Government Monopoly Fever Spreading…

Government MonopolyBy Paul Gable

The urge to establish a government monopoly in sectors of the economy seems to be getting irresistible for local governments in South Carolina.

Currently this trend is being seen in county flow control ordinances that force municipalities and private waste haulers to dispose of their collected garbage and other solid waste at landfills owned or designated by county government.

Why is this such a big deal?

Because it supports inefficiently run government landfills and costs taxpayers money.

Begun in 2009 in Horry County, monopoly flow control is catching on in other counties at the same time the General Assembly is considering legislation to make the practice illegal.

The latest is happening in Greenwood County where, according to published reports, county manager Toby Chappell is urging members of the Greenwood County legislative delegation to vote against the bill in order to improve the overall landfill budget for the county.

According to media reports, Greenwood County lost over $700,000 from its landfill operations last year. The county’s deputy director of public works, Donna Sightler, attributed this loss of revenue to solid waste being taken to out of county landfills for disposal.

Why? Because the Greenwood County landfill charges tipping fees of $40 per ton while the Greenville County Twin Chimneys landfill charges only $30 per ton for disposal. According to Sightler, much of the lost waste is being taken to Twin Chimneys.

Chappell, reportedly, urged county council to pass a flow control ordinance combined with a ‘slight’ increase in residential “uniform service fees”. Chappell called it a “golden opportunity.”

It certainly is a golden opportunity for Greenwood County to shaft its taxpayers. Pass an ordinance that requires all waste generated in the county to be disposed of at the county landfill (that’s what flow control is) at higher costs.

Rather than try to eliminate waste, become more efficient or improve whatever is causing Greenwood County to charge 25 percent more at its landfill than Greenville County does, just pass the cost on to the taxpayers and force them to pay it by establishing a government monopoly.

Isn’t government ownership and control of inefficient, costly government run industries what ultimately led to the downfall of the Soviet Union?

In this reddest of states (supposedly) do we want to copy all the negatives of socialism?

This certainly seems to be the philosophy in Horry, Greenwood other counties that see government ownership, control and monopoly of an industry to be a solution, not a problem.

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