On July 16, The Sun News printed a letter from Mr. Jason Barr (“Overturn Haley’s vetoes”) that was demeaning and insulting to Gov. Nikki Haley. The comments were directed at the governor for her veto of certain budget items. The writer does not acknowledge the need for her to comply with the mandates of a balanced budget.
Gov. Haley has been a consistent anti-tax fiscal conservative who has emphasized education. She recently vetoed obvious pork barrel spending issues such as money for the South Carolina Arts Commission, the Sea Grants Consortium, an African-American museum and a history museum in North Myrtle Beach. She also eliminated a one-time pay raise for teachers.
In a total budget of $6.8 billion she cut $67.5 million, an amount less than 1 percent of the total budget for the fiscal year. I commend the governor for her efforts and would have encouraged her to cut deeper. These are perilous times financially and I am pleased to see that the leader of this state is making decisions in the best interest of the citizens.
She raised the budgets of 30 state agencies by a million dollars or more over last year. She authorized $48 million to provide raises for state employees and she dedicated an additional $152 million to education. Some of this money could be used for pay raises. She has a B.S. in accounting and prior experience as a chief financial officer. She is certainly more than well qualified to use the power of the line item veto to pass a balanced budget. I stand with our former first lady Jenny Stanford in describing Gov. Haley as one who has taken a courageous stance in defense of the taxpayers.
The writer lives in Myrtle Beach.