In the last few days, I’ve run links to a story in The State and another in the Post and Courier giving the 30,000-foot view of Gov. Sanford’s budget line-item vetoes, with all the quotes about political philosophy, descriptions of the state of the political relationship between the governor and lawmakers (somewhat better than in past years, you may be surprised to learn), and rehashes of just how much the governor hates the federal stimulus and is looking forward to saying “I told you so” when the money runs out.
What I have not seen is a good rundown of what he was cutting. And boy, am I missing having Cindi Scoppe working for me. Give her a couple of days of communing with the budget document (which might as well be written in Greek for all the good it does me), and she’d tell me everything I needed to know about it. When it comes to writing about the budget, to paraphrase Blanche Dubois,I have always depended on the kindness of… people who know how to read that stuff.
But a number of things have caused me to wonder in the last couple of days.
- The consternation I picked up on over at ETV studios over the massive cut to their budget. ($5.2 million — that detail was in the P&C report)
- The call I got from someone yesterday whose girlfriend works at the State Museum, and she was worried because the governor had vetoed the museum’s entire appropriation (which would shut it down if not overridden).
- An e-mail I got saying the same about the Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum. (I say, is nothin’ sacred?) This appears to be part of the governor’s elimination of the entire appropriation for the Budget and Control Board.
To quote from that last:
Yesterday Governor Sanford vetoed the Board’s entire $25.2 million General Fund appropriation for the Budget and Control Board for next year. This section of the budget includes the entire General Fund operating budget for the S.C. Confederate Relic Room and Military Museum. If this veto is not overridden, the museum will have to cease operations.In his veto message to the General Assembly, the Governor stated that he was taking this action because the “Board has sufficient carry-forward and other funds to maintain its operations in this fiscal year.” This is not correct. There are not sufficient funds to make up the $25.2 General Fund cut to the Board, which includes $765,000 for the museum.This veto represents the greatest threat the museum has faced in our 114 years of existence. If this veto is not overridden we will no longer be able to preserve South Carolina’s proud military legacy.
Now one can have all sorts of debates as to the relative importance of the museum formerly known simply as the Confederate Relic Room (although I can tell you from having visited that it’s much more now), but what’s bugging me is that, with the vote coming up Tuesday, I just don’t have a clear idea of WHAT all is at stake.
Do any of y’all? And if so, please share.