Has your joy reading this summer included the South Carolina debt report? No, I did not think so. It is probably not much more complicated than 5th grade math, and yet it is difficult for me to grasp. Want to have a look for yourself? Here it is. I found page 12 most interesting especially the long extending line for the Public Service Authority.
This week I have submitted credit cards online, attended “Fact and Fee” days with check book in hand, and paid amounts for each of my children to be fully registered in their three respective public schools. Although the amounts are minimal, in each case I am asked by my child, “Why do we pay to go to a public school?” The conversation leads to a full on discussion about governments, their size, their responsibility for fire, police, schools, roads, etc. I have (and hate) to admit that if it were not for Saturday Night Live, my children would have not interest in anything political. Thank you Kate McKinnon and Alec Baldwin!
We have followed the local news about the 526 extension..or not. So, we know there is state money connected to the Transportation Infrastructure Bank. We have followed the news about the VC Summer nuclear plant so we know there is state money involved in that construction failure. And, because I have teenagers, we spend a great deal of time thinking about education on the local and state level. So, if you had asked me to graph state investments and debts in specific areas, I might have come up with some of the right categories. Turns out I would have been way off on the amounts.
Take a look at this graph and see for yourself. What would you have guessed?