A number of important questions will be answered in Laurens County during 2016


Questions abound for the remaining 51 weeks in 2016.

Who will win the national championship football game on Monday?

Has the University of South Carolina become a basketball school?

Who will be the first to embarrass his school in 2016 – Clemson’s Dabo Swinney with his silliness or USC’s Will Muschamp with his “intensity?”

Will Red Devil football make strides in the journey back to championships?

Some of the questions are not as important as sports, but will be answered this year.

What will happen in Clinton when the weather turns cold and residents receive high electric bills? Because for all the action taken by city administrators and city council to deal with the aftermath of last summer’s electric bill crisis, nothing has really been done yet to lower power bills in Clinton.

No matter how many payment plans are approved or how much financial assistance is made available, the fact is we still pay more for electricity than anyone in the state. The reason can be debated, but the fact remains.

Who will be the next Laurens County Administrator? Ernie Segars goes against Dylan Thomas’ advice and will go gentle into that good night of leisure on March 18.

Segars, who started his professional career at this newspaper, has led Laurens County for 27 years – first as the county’s administrative assistant and then as the county administrator – the only administrator the county has ever had.

Segars chose his retirement date – in the middle of the month – because it’s the end of a pay period. That makes it nice and neat for the county’s HR department. Segars was a stickler for keeping things nice and neat.

He never lost his temper (in public) or his incredible sense of humor. He will be hard to replace, but he has earned a chance to take life easy.

Will 2016 bring any more big people news? Marvin Moss retired as the executive director of the Laurens County Development Corporation at the end of 2015 (he started to work Monday as the City of Clinton’s part-time economic recruiter). Segars is leaving in March. Several other public agencies underwent changes in 2015.

Will 2016 be a year of leadership stability? We doubt it. It doesn’t happen very often. Change is normal and to be expected.

In recent years, the City of Clinton and Laurens County and School District 56 have all been fairly consistent at the department head/leadership levels. There have been a few new hires or promotions, but, for the most part, those making the day-to-day decisions have remained in place.

Who will win elections in 2016 – both in Laurens County and in the United States? As outlined in the Dec. 23 issue of The Chronicle, there will be a raft of elections this year. From Laurens County sheriff to Laurens County council. From School District 56 to the soil and water conservation district.

What will Donald J. Trump be doing one year from today? Will he be back at work running his business empire or preparing for his inauguration on Jan. 20, 2017? Will we, as a country, follow the election of our first African-American president by electing our first female commander in chief?

Will the frontage road open this year? Will it have to be repaved before it even opens? Has there ever been more clear evidence of a government boondoggle than our frontage road? The road is officially named West Corporate Center Drive, but it’s been called many less-pleasant names. We hope, that in 2016, it will be called the road to some new businesses. But we won’t hold our collective breaths.

Will Clinton really, finally take a positive step to partner with somebody and build (or at least announce) a new recreation complex? Will that happen before the frontage road opens?

Will PC hire a new president in 2016? Will Andrew Webb get interim removed from his job title? Will Clinton host a second Nat Fuller Feast this year?

So many questions and only 51 weeks to have them answered.





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