Weekly Update from Rep. Tom Young – September 18, 2012 to September 24, 2012

The House of Representatives is out of session for the rest of the year.  I hope that you find this update helpful and informative:

South Carolina Lottery:  Recently, the SC Lottery Commission posted an updated historical analysis of the appropriated lottery revenue.  For fiscal year 2012, $233.8 Million went to higher education and $34.5 Million went to K-12 education.  To see the full detailed list of appropriations back to 2002, go here.

Silver Bluff Road Widening:  On Tuesday of last week, I attended the public information meeting for the widening of Silver Bluff Road from Richardson’s Lake Road back toward the City of Aiken.  Several hundred residents attended. For those of you who were unable to attend last week’s meeting, public comments can be submitted until October 3, 2012. The plan can be viewed at http://www.scdot.org/inside/publichearings.aspx. Comments can be faxed to 803.737.1510 or emailed to GanttKI@scdot.org.  The links for the information provided by DOT before the meeting are as follows:

SC 302 Silver Bluff Road:  http://www.scdot.org/inside/pdfs/PublicHearings/302_handout.pdf
Display of Proposed Work: http://www.scdot.org/inside/pdfs/PublicHearings/302_display.pdf

Small Business Help – SC Dept. of Commerce: The South Carolina Department of Commerce has helpful information for small business owners and employees.  To learn more, go to http://sccommerce.com/sc-business-network.

Save for College – Future Scholar 529 College Savings Plan:  South Carolina’s 529 College Savings Plan Future Scholar offers special tax benefits for South Carolina residents including:

  • Tax –deductible contributions from your state income tax return;
  • Tax-deferred growth potential year after year;
  • Tax-free withdrawals provided that funds are used for qualified higher education expenses.

To learn more or to enroll, go to www.FutureScholar.com/parents.

Voter Registration:  To vote in the November 6 election, you must be registered to vote by October 6. To learn more, go here.

Unemployment Numbers for August:  In August, Aiken County unemployment rate dropped ½ % from 8.9% in July to 8.4% in August. A year ago the level was at 9.1%. August statewide average unemployment was 9.6%.

Other Local News

Chukker Creek School Traffic:  Last Fall, Rep. Bill Taylor, Senator Ryberg, and I requested SCDOT to look at how to improve the traffic problems at the beginning and the end of the school day at Chukker Creek Elementary School.  Earlier this year, SCDOT recommended improvements and did some of them on its own. The Aiken County School District and the Aiken County Transportation Committee are jointly addressing additional improvements.

Planning for the 2013 Legislative Session:  The 2013 legislative session begins on the second Tuesday in January.  If elected to the State Senate, I appreciate input from constituents on the critical issues facing our state and area including tax reform; spending reform; K-12 education; the costs of higher education; health care; economic development; job growth; and the underfunded liabilities in our state’s retirement systems.  Your input is welcome on any issue important to you.  Please email me back or contact me by phone or in person.

Free Goals and Communications Seminar for High School and College Students:  This event, sponsored by the Aiken Jaycees, will be held tomorrow, Tuesday, September 25 from 6:00 to 7:30 pm at USC Aiken in Penland 106.  To learn more and to register, go here.

Opt Out of Prescreened Offers of Credit:  To opt out of receiving prescreened offers of credit in the mail, go to www.optoutprescreen.com.

Upcoming Meetings

Dates for End of Session Town Meetings: Currently, I have two town meetings set as follows:

  • Wednesday, October 3 at 6:00 pm at Odell Weeks Center in Aiken;
  • Tuesday, October 2 at 4:00 pm at Woodside Plantation Reserve Club House in Aiken.

Education – Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteer in Local Schools:  If you would like to help with educating our children, consider volunteering in our local schools.  Please click here for more information on volunteer opportunities in our public schools. Thank you to our local Aiken Downtown Rotary Club for putting together this list of opportunities.

Improving Reading Skills in Children:  In addition to serving as a volunteer in one of our local schools, you can also help with early literacy by volunteering with Children’s Place where you can spend time reading with a young child or helping an older child with reading. Children’s Place would also be grateful for donations of lightly used books to send into the homes of needy children.  Children’s Place will gladly help distribute those books to low income children throughout Aiken County by sharing them with all community agencies.  If you are interested in helping through Children’s Place, please contact Peggy Ford at 641-4145.

Senate Campaign Update

Senate Campaign:  Here is the latest on the Campaign for Senate District 24:

  • Bumper stickers for “Tom Young for Senate” are available.  They may be picked up at my office downtown at 409 Park Avenue SW; at the Tom Young Allstate agency on Whiskey Road next to Home Depot; or at Hixon Insurance in North Augusta.  If you prefer, I can send a sticker to you.  Just let me know.
  • The following communities in Aiken County are in Senate District 24: most of Aiken, North Augusta, Warrenville, Gloverville, Montmorenci, Couchton, New Ellenton, Jackson, Windsor, and Beech Island.
  • To learn more about my campaign for State Senate, go to www.tomyoungforsenate.com, email me at tom@tomyoungforsenate.com, or call me at 215-3631.

Constituent Information

Speaking with Groups Around the District: Several local groups have invited me to attend one of their meetings to provide a legislative update.  If you have a group that would like for me to come to a meeting, please let me know.

Report Waste, Fraud and Abuse in State Government:  To report waste, fraud and abuse in state government, you can call: 1-855-SC-FRAUD.

Facebook:  I have a Facebook page for Representative Tom Young. Please “like” the page to receive updates during the week from me on Facebook.

Tom Young’s Website: My website can be reached at www.tomyoungforsenate.com. There are links to a variety of constituent services; the status of sponsored bills; and roll call votes. Please add my web site as a bookmark on your computer.

State House Tours:  Tours are available for the S.C. State House by calling (803) 734-2430.  If you set a tour between January and June and it is on a Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday, please let me know so I can do my best to see you.

Email Updates:  If you know of people in or around District 81 who do not receive my updates but they would like to get them, please email their names and email addresses to me.

Road Issues:  If you see a road problem, 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 tom@tomyoungforsenate.com or call me. Generally, 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. Most unpaved roads in the County are maintained by the County.

Thank you for the opportunity and the honor 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.


Tom Young

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