Since the Hurricane Florence aftermath flooding, I have been keeping you updated as to what our state government is doing to reduce the physical and mental anguish brought on by the natural disasters that we have all endured in recent years. In addition to what I have already reported there is another tool in the state government tool box that I want you to be aware of that is still a work in progress.
Last year, the S.C. Senate passed Sen. Stephen Goldfinch’s innovative flood damage mitigation bill almost unanimously – 44 to 1. It’s past time for the House to pass and Gov. McMaster to sign this important bill, especially with the recent devastating flooding in Georgetown County.
It’s costly for taxpayers to have to repeatedly pay for flood damage repairs or reconstruction to the same flood prone homes. This happens through federal flood insurance or disaster recovery funds, time after time.
Sen. Goldfinch’s S.C. Resiliency Revolving Fund bill would help save taxpayer money by providing the required matching dollars for a federal buyout of these flood prone homes. This would end the very costly flood and repair, flood and repair cycle for taxpayers for these homes.
In addition to saving our tax dollars, the bill provides a way out for these impacted families, who want to relocate and end the cycle, but can’t without a buyout.
Sen. Goldfinch’s bill makes good common sense. The House needs to pass it now.
I know that there is a Teacher Appreciation Week that is celebrated each year in the schools, with PTO and other community groups showing appreciation for the job our teachers do…however…I want to take this opportunity to give a BIG SHOUT OUT to our Teachers, our school Curriculum Coaches, Media Specialists, Paraprofessionals, and school Administrators.
On Sunday, March 15, 2020, our Governor announced the closing of our schools due to the Coronavirus. Our fabulous staff members reported to their campuses on Monday and worked diligently to get packets ready for students, run off copies where needed, and put together assignments in Google Classrooms. All preparations were in place before the end of the day, and ready for pick-up on Wednesday and Thursday. No complaining, no negative attitudes. All working together to make sure students could continue their lessons, even as students were going to be out for an extended time. Teachers will be checking their emails and their Google Classrooms over the time that we are out, and be able to answer questions about assignments.
These awesome school staff members got student devices and chargers ready to go in bags and in packets; and devised a system for handing out the work and devices. There were so many to volunteer to help with getting devices to parents and students either by drive up or walk up and carry. District folks were out and about as well.
Not only that, but many teachers, and school staff members volunteered to work at the schools where meals were being served.
I am so proud to be associated with the Georgetown County School District. If you see a teacher, school staff member, Media Specialist, Guidance Counselor or Administrator…are friends with some on social media sites…or have time to drop them an email…Please tell them how much you appreciate their efforts in this trying time. #GCSDChampions #GCSDStaffMembersAreAwesome
I am writing about the trash along our highways. As I drive most weekdays from Pawleys to Georgetown I
am always dismayed and somewhat disgusted with all the trash along route 17. I have lived in and visited many
other states where they take great pride in their highways. I do not understand the lack of concern people seemed to
have here about throwing trash out of their automobiles. Whether going towards Myrtle Beach or Charleston it
is the same. Perhaps they need to put cameras up to catch the repeat offenders and start fining them. I really
do not know what the answer is, but please people take some pride in your community. We live in a beautiful area
and are responsible for our environment and the world we want to leave for our children.
To the Editor:
We need to fix the issue of surprise medical billing. Just like millions of others, I’ve been hit with medical bills I never saw coming, all because my insurance company wasn’t up front about what is and is not covered under their plan.
Surprise medical billing is only going to get worse due to United Healthcare’s decision to drop Mednax, a large physician group. Thousands of doctors will no longer be in-network and their patients won’t realize it until they are sent a bill for out-of-network costs. It doesn’t matter if they saw the doctor at an in-network-facility; United Healthcare will not cover any expense from a Mednax doctor.
The health insurance lobby claims they want to stop surprise medical bills, but only by convincing Congress to let them set their own reimbursement rates. Insurance companies would naturally set the lowest possible rates, which would force thousands of doctors to close their practices. These closures would then leave tens of thousands of Americans without access to healthcare.
Independent Dispute Resolution (IDR) is the best way to address this crisis. IDR uses an arbitration system that takes patients out of the billing dispute and replaces them with an independent mediator.
Nothing is off the table in the insurance companies’ quest for financial gain; cancellations, rate setting, anything that makes them money at the expense of Americans’ healthcare. We need to push IDR as a remedy for surprise medical billing to protect patients and medical providers.