The National Debt and the Fiscal Cliff — Weekly Update from Rep. Tom Young – October 16, 2012 to October 23, 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:

National Debt: In late August, this newsletter focused on the ever growing national debt. Now, there is increasing likelihood that Congress will take up the National Debt Commission Report after the November elections. Last November, I provided information on this report in this update. Currently, automatic across the board cuts of $1.2 Trillion are set to take effect in January 2013. Meanwhile, the national debt continues to grow and is the greatest threat to the future of the United States. For over a quarter of a century, the Federal Government has spent more than it takes in. Eventually, the chickens will come home to roost. To read about this problem and potential solutions, please see the National Debt Commission Report seen here.

Fiscal Cliff: The “fiscal cliff” refers to the problem that the federal government faces at the beginning of January when the temporary payroll tax cuts expire and workers will see their paychecks drop by 2%. Additionally, businesses will lose certain tax breaks, the alternative minimum tax will increase, the Bush era tax cuts expire, and taxes related to the federal health care law kick in. In addition, across-the-board budget cuts totaling $1.2 trillion over the next 10 years will begin as the debt-ceiling deal of 2011 goes into effect. All of the uncertainty associated with the “fiscal cliff” is affecting the economy now as many businesses – both large and small – and families have plans on hold not knowing what the future will bring. To see a recent article about the impact of the “fiscal cliff” on our current economy in South Carolina, go here.

Impact on South Carolina: In view of the above, it is critically important for our state to be prepared for budget cuts in money coming from the Federal Government and for significant constrictions on the ability to borrow money for capital projects. We should have a contingency plan in place for how South Carolina’s state government will deal with the challenges presented by problems with the Federal Government associated with the debt. The debt problem described above underscores why it is so important for South Carolina to keep a balanced budget; build up the state’s cash reserves; address the unfunded liabilities in the state retiree health care plan; and do everything that we can to keep the state’s bond rating as high as possible.

Governor Forms Commission on Ethics Committee: Last week, by executive order, Governor Haley formed the S.C. Commission on Ethics Reform. The Commission is charged with making recommendations to amend current ethics laws to include, but not be limited to: enforcement of ethics laws by state and legislative bodies, income disclosure for public officials, conflict of interest rules for public officials, lobbying rules and restrictions, campaign practices and use of campaign funds, and rules regarding state and private plane usage by state officials.

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.

Child Passenger Safety: To learn more about ways to keep your children or grandchildren safe in your car, go to The information at this link is provided in part by the South Carolina Department of Public Safety.

Other Local News

Hitchcock Parkway Widening – Public Input Meeting: SCDOT has begun design work and has scheduled a discussion session to hear comments on November 8 from 5-7 pm at South Aiken High School.

One Table Thanksgiving in Aiken: On Thanksgiving Day, many churches and non-profit organizations within greater Aiken are sponsoring a community-wide Thanksgiving celebration called One Table in The Alley in downtown Aiken. Food will be served at noon. To learn more, go here:

SC Traveler: To learn more about some of the unique places, fall festivals, and events in South Carolina, go here.

Senate Campaign Update

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

  • Election day is November 6 and absentee voting is happening now. I am listed on the ballot twice. Your vote for me as either the Republican nominee of the Petition candidate will count the same as the totals for each will be combined.
  • 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, email me at, 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 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.

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

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.

Thoroughbred Country– South Carolina Regional Tourism Organization: To learn more about tourism in the four county region of Aiken, Allendale, Bamberg, and Barnwell, visit

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 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
215-3631 (cell)

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