Update – December 22 to January 3, 2011

The House of Representatives begins the 2011 session on January 11, 2011. I hope that you find this update helpful and informative:

Happy New Year: Happy New Year to you and your family! During the Holidays, I hope that you took a few moments to remember the true meaning for why we celebrate Christmas. I also hope that you were able to spend time with family and friends and reflect on how blessed that we are to live in the United States. My wife Heather and I hope and pray that the New Year brings you much joy, health, and happiness. Thank you for the opportunity to serve you in the South Carolina House of Representatives.

2010 Census and Reapportionment: The 2010 Census has resulted in a reapportionment of representation in the U.S. House of Representatives. Because of South Carolina’s population growth over the past decade compared to the rest of the U.S., South Carolina will gain one seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. There will now be 7 members of Congress from South Carolina after the 2012 elections. South Carolina joined Georgia, Florida, Texas, and Arizona in gaining at least one seat in the U.S. House.

Blue Ribbon Commission on America’s Nuclear Future: The U.S. Department of Energy’s Blue Ribbon Commission on America’s Nuclear Future will be in Aiken County this week. The Commission will tour SRS and have a public meeting on Friday, January 7 from 8:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Augusta Marriott Hotel and Suites. The Commission is charged with making recommendations to the current Presidential Administration on nuclear issues including the storage, processing, and disposal of civilian and defense spent nuclear fuel and nuclear waste. For more information, click here.

Message to Department of Energy and Blue Ribbon Commission: During the past couple of months, I have joined other area leaders in meeting with representatives from the U.S. Dept. of Energy and in preparing a message for the Blue Ribbon Commission. That message can be summarized as follows:

1. The DOE must ensure that Yucca Mountain remains in line to be the final destination for the nation’s nuclear waste in a vitrified form and the nuclear waste at SRS should not remain there indefinitely.;

2. If Yucca Mountain is no longer an alternative as a final repository for keeping the nation’s nuclear waste in vitrified form, then the DOE should support returning the over $1.0 Billion paid by South Carolinian utility ratepayers over the past few decades for the development of Yucca Mountain.;

3. The DOE should consider using SRS facilities and expertise to help solve the national issue involving Yucca Mountain and disposal of high level nuclear waste.;

4. The DOE must be committed to SRS long term for both clean up and for its use in meeting the future energy needs of the nation. This includes development of an Energy Park at SRS.;

5. The DOE must be committed to the National Lab at SRS just as it is to the other 11 national labs around the nation. This commitment should include increased financial support; new infrastructure; and the support of new missions for research and development at the Lab.

Comptroller General’s 2010 Annual Financial Report: On December 23, Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom’s office released the 2010 Financial Annual Report for the State. The report can be accessed on my website by clicking here.

Owens Corning Expanding Production in Aiken County: Owens Corning announced just before Christmas that it is expanding its Aiken County plant by adding another production line for non-woven glass fiber mat. The Company intends to invest $36 Million in the expansion and hire 24 more people at the plant. To learn more, click here.

New State Flag for Schools in District: If you know of a school in District 81 which needs a new South Carolina state flag, please let me know.

Aiken County Legislative Delegation: The next meeting is on Monday, January 10, 2011 at 4:00 p.m. at the Aiken County Council Chambers.

Holiday Mailer to District with 2011 Magnetic Calendar: If you live in District 81 and did not receive my Holiday mailer with the 2011 Magnetic Calendar, please let me know. They were delivered on December 20 and December 21 last month.

Email Updates: Many people in District 81 are receiving this email update. However, there are many others who do not receive them because I do not know their email addresses. If you know of people who do not receive my updates but they would like to, please email their names and email addresses to me.

Road Issues: If you see a road problem, you can call the SCDOT at 641-7665 or Aiken County at 642-1532 to report the problem. If you do not get a prompt response, please let me know at TomYoung@schouse.gov or call me. In general terms, most paved roads in the County are maintained by SCDOT and are identified on the road- sign poles by a small black and white sign listing the road number, such as S-2-1669. On the other hand, nearly all unpaved roads in the County are maintained by the County.

Thank you for the opportunity to represent you. Please let me know if I can help you in any way or if you have questions about these or other issues. Your feedback is meaningful and appreciated.

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