HACKED TAX RETURNS
14 companies may bid for hacking cleanup contract
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - State officials say the next contract for taxpayers' credit monitoring services must be issued next month to prevent a coverage lapse.
Budget and Control Board director Marcia Adams says mid-July is the deadline for assuring a new contract is in place before the 1-year contract with Experian expires. That contract was signed just before Gov. Nikki Haley announced Oct. 26 that a hacker stole the personal data of millions of residents from their tax returns.
That $12 million contract gave residents until March 31 to sign up.
Adams says 14 companies indicate they want the next, multi-year contract.
She says the state's official request for bids should be ready for the board's review July 1. Adams says the timing allows for potential protests from companies that don't win the contract.
SC Ports agency approves fiscal 2014 plan
CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) - The South Carolina State Ports Authority board has approved an aggressive budget for the next fiscal year that includes projections of an almost 6% increase in container volume.
The budget approved spending $123 million on capital projects for the fiscal year starting July 1. About $29 million of that will go toward the authority's new warehouse in Greer slated to open in September. The so-called inland port allows the transfer of cargo from trucks to be taken by train to and from the coast.
The board also agreed Tuesday to purchase two new larger container cranes to handle the supersize container ships coming into service with the widening of the Panama Canal. The authority is spending about $25 million on the cranes expected to be in service in 2015.
MOTEL SHUT DOWN
Fire marshal closes part of Myrtle Beach motel
MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (AP) - A fire marshal has shut down part of a Myrtle Beach motel after finding up to 14 people in some rooms and smoke detectors missing.
Myrtle Beach Fire Marshal Bruce Arnel said the safety issues were found Monday during an inspection at the Calypso Inn.
Officials say a number of international students in Myrtle Beach to work for the summer were in the motel and had to find a different place to stay.
Arnel gave the owner of the motel a day to get the number of guests back under maximum capacity.
Motel owner Yehuda Sadeh says he is asking all the students to leave because of their poor behavior. Sadeh says he is correcting the problems found in the inspection.
FIRE STATION FIRE
Columbia firefighter causes fire at own station
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - A Columbia firefighter rushing to a call during a thunderstorm left a pot of grease on a stove that caused a blaze in the kitchen of a fire station.
Fire Chief Aubrey Jenkins said sprinklers helped contain the blaze Monday evening before firefighters could get back to the station, but the fire still caused $20,000 in damage.
Jenkins says the fire station was empty when the grease caught fire because all the firefighters were responding to several call during a thunderstorm.
The fire chief says he knows some people might laugh at a firefighter causing a fire. But Jenkins says it shows fires can happen anywhere and no one is immune from a careless mistake that might spark a blaze.
SC teen charged with felony DUI after collision
FLORENCE, S.C. (AP) - An 18-year-old Florence man is charged with felony driving under the influence after a woman was killed in a two-car collision in Florence.
The Morning News of Florence reported that Nicklas Surls was arrested by the South Carolina Highway Patrol in connection with the wreck Saturday.
Surls was charged with one count of felony driving under the influence with death and one count of felony driving under the influence with great bodily injury.
Coroner Keith von Lutcken said 21-year-old Jennifer Marie Thomas of Orangeburg was a passenger in the other vehicle and died from her injuries.
It wasn't clear whether Surls has an attorney.
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