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CITY BLIPS

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Better Luck ·
Next Time ·
So here's a little piece of irony: the supposedly armed man who ran into the King Street offices of The Post and Courier last week was not an employee of the Charleston City Paper. Apparently, the man was being chased on foot by police in connection with another alleged crime, and ducked into the daily newspaper's loading docks. To make matters weirder, an off-duty cop working at a nearby grocery store heard the call, came over to help, then suffered a heart attack and had to be revived by Charleston Fire Department members using an electronic defibrillator. The man, who had outstanding warrants, was arrested on a weapons charge, and the officer is recovering nicely. —Bill Davis

This Week In Columbia ·
Looks like property tax reform isn't as done a deal as everyone thought it was in the Statehouse. With "we're moving too quickly on something so important" claxons sounding all over the Capitol, one legislator has put forward a plan to convene a committee to study the issue for a year before the legislature takes any action to remove local property taxes in favor of an increased state sales tax. Yet, over in the House, a panel approved two bills that would swap local property taxes for increases in the state sales tax and cap property reassessments, respectively. If the bills pass the full Ways and Means committee in the House, they could be voted on on the floor of the Statehouse as soon as next week. Education was the hot-button topic last week, as the Put Parents in Charge bill, which Gov. Mark Sanford fought for last year before giving up on it this year in favor of an expanded school-choice program for kids in failing schools, resurfaced as a trimmed-down private school voucher and tax credit for families wanting to put their kids in private school. —BD

ColleenLoses Two ·
Charlie Smith bowed out last week from his spot on the County's Planning Commission after County Council decided not to challenge the removal of another candidate nominated to the Board of Zoning Appeals by Councilperson Colleen Condon. Condon, who replaced Joey Douan on Council after the courts threw out a prior election result, had nominated Smith to the Planning Commission and Aubrey Alexander to the BZA. But Sam McConnell, Douan's man for the BZA, sued and won his seat back, with the judge finding that since the entire Council appointed him, McConnell should be allowed to finish out his four-year term. Smith says he decided to step aside because he didn't want to waste taxpayers' money on a non-elected seat battle or distract the Planning Commission from the important matters on its agenda. Paul Speights, Douan's man who replaced Smith, praised him and Condon for being so "gracious." Speights adds that he was glad the situation "did go in a different direction, from my standpoint." —BD

Haiku of the week

Our squandered millions
In war, no comparison
To our loss of life

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