We must resist divisive choices
We were heartened to see Mayor Doug Echols’ article in The Herald regarding the upcoming Sons of Confederate Veterans Convention at York Technical College. It was a well-reasoned, full-throated, inspirational and timely stance for justice and equality in our community.
It was also a powerful argument for having the right perspective about injustice, discrimination, racism and xenophobia. We must peacefully but forcefully resist choices, words and even symbols that divide us. The power of words and symbols is that they can become policy.
There is no time like now for us to reaffirm our values as a community, resist the urge of embracing those who spew vitriol and work to pull down hateful and divisive imagery. This is one of the paths that we must take to find our way toward the oneness of that “more perfect union.”
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Rock Hill NAACP
S.C. House should pass solar bill
The S.C. Senate did the right thing passing Senate Bill 44, which would increase solar energy infrastructure development in our state and increase jobs and overall revenue. We need to stimulate economic development and bring jobs to South Carolina, and this bill is a major step forward for our state’s economy.
Now it is time for the S.C. House to pass S.44’s companion, House Bill 3079. In our current economy, a tax cut for homeowners that provides sustainable solar energy development while creating hundreds of jobs in our local communities is a win-win for both the homeowner and South Carolina businesses.
South Carolina needs to create ways to further develop our economy and invest in our state’s infrastructure, much like our neighbors have. Just two years ago, South Carolina invested $10 million in solar installations, while our neighbors in Georgia and North Carolina invested $311 million, and $1.69 billion respectively.
When you look at our progress compared to the region, we are drastically behind, and it will take a lot of hard work and collaboration to catch up. Luckily, by lowering property taxes for homeowners who implement solar technology, this legislation will vastly improve our state’s solar energy infrastructure while bringing much-needed jobs and investment to the state.
Across America, 38 states have passed renewable energy property tax legislation. In 2008 North Carolina passed a renewable energy property tax exemption, and by 2015 it had the second-highest amount of solar installations in the nation. The revenue that would be generated to the state if this legislation is passed is staggering. Specifically, we have the potential to generate over 90 solar projects here in the state, encouraging an overall investment of over $1.4 billion in just three years.