Friday, May 17, 2013
Congratulations to Sullivan’s Island Mayor-Elect Mike Perkis, who won a narrow victory over Mayor Carl Smith in the election on May 7. The final numbers are very revealing: Mike Perkis received 459 votes out of 905 total votes cast. There were a total of 446 write-in votes in the mayoral election, of which 430 went to Mayor Carl Smith.
That all works out to 50.7 percent of votes for Mr. Perkis - a very bare majority and just six votes more than necessary to avoid a run-off. Given that there were a total of 446 write-in votes in the mayoral race, that means a total of 49.3 percent of Sullivan’s Island voters supported someone other than Mr. Perkis for mayor.
Under South Carolina election law, a run-off election is required unless a candidate garners more than 50 percent of the votes cast.
In the case of the election, that number was 453 votes and Mike Perkis received 459 votes. Had a run-off election been held, the names of the top two vote getters in the race Mike Perkis and Carl Smith, would have been placed on the ballot.
Mr. Perkis’ 29-vote margin (involving a write-in candidate) should finally be a shake and wake-up call to Sullivan’s Island Town Council.
The 58 percent turnout emphasizes the passion on both sides of this issue.
The fair solution is, of course, to follow the law, finally respect both the law and constituents and give island residents their referendum. It is interesting to note that the number of votes keeping Sullivan’s Island out of a run-off situation - six - is equal to the number of town council members who continue to vote to deny Sullivan’s Island residents a vote on the referendum.
Mr. Perkis says he wants to “unite islanders” and “establish a dialogue with the people who voted against him.” Let’s begin with talks on when to schedule the legal/certified referendum on the school.
A referendum on the size and scope of the school is the one thing that will unite and heal Sullivan’s Island. Allow islanders to at last have their vote. That is Democracy 101.
I don’t know which was funnier - the 2013 Spoleto Festival poster, or The Post and Courier’s reporter’s tortured prose trying to explain its meaning.
For well over a decade small businesses have complained loudly about the affordability of health insurance. Efforts to address this problem have been controversial and often too partisan.
That is why it is important to publicly recognize legislators who are problem solvers and forge a bi-partisan solution to benefit are small businesses and individual policyholders.
Representatives Robert Brown, Wendell Gilliard, Jenny Horne, Chip Limehouse, David Mack, Jim Merrill, Samuel Rivers, Mike Sotille, Leon Stavrinakis and Seth Whipper have joined more than half the members of the South Carolina House of Representatives in sponsoring H.4095.
Thirty-five Republicans and 39 Democrats have found a way to address a critical issue that is making health insurance unaffordable for everybody.
Right now those with health insurance pay higher premiums to cover the uncompensated care of the uninsured, who are mostly low income. For a family policy this additional cost is about $1,000 a year. This cost shifting or “hidden tax” will only go away when most citizens have some form of health insurance.
House Bill 4095 would help low-income citizens obtain private insurance using effective managed care organizations and health savings accounts. Through the effective utilization of federal funds, today’s uninsured and insured South Carolinians will realize the benefits of affordable health insurance without adding significant expense to the state taxpayers.
We applaud the leadership of these Representatives in pursuing affordable health insurance for our small businesses and citizens.
Frank Knapp Jr.
President & CEO
South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce