Originally created 11/05/06

Across South Carolina



Ballot copies to aid in long voting lines

COLUMBIA - In hopes of easing long lines Tuesday, election officials are urging voters to read the ballot's constitutional amendment questions before they step in the booth.

The state Election Commission has printed more than 600,000 fliers that list and explain the ballot's seven questions, which will be handed out at polling places for people to read while waiting.

The more questions on a ballot, the longer it takes for people to vote. And a South Carolina ballot hasn't had this many questions since 1988, when there were 11, commission spokesman Chris Whitmire said.

Nearly 2.5 million South Carolinians are registered to vote in Tuesday's election, up about 140,000 voters since 2004.

Hostage situation ends without violence

RIDGELAND - A 13-hour hostage situation with a suicidal inmate at Ridgeland Correctional Institution ended nonviolently Saturday, according to the state Corrections Department.

Armed with a homemade weapon, inmate Lloyd Isaac, 35, took a female prison employee hostage at about 12:15 p.m. Friday, according to a department release.

Mr. Isaac, who is serving a 50-year sentence at the Jasper County prison, asked authorities in a note and throughout negotiations to kill him, but the situation ended nonviolently at about 1:30 a.m., the release said.

The investigation continues, and the medium security prison remained on lockdown, the release said.

Clemson might soon become smoke-free

CLEMSON - Members of the Clemson City Council will see examples of ordinances developed by the city staff that would prohibit smoking in public buildings inside the city limits when they meet Monday to consider a smoking ban.

The ban could include private buildings that are accessible by the general public, including stores, offices, restaurants, bars and lobby areas within public buildings.

The Clemson University campus is outside the city and any ordinance would not affect the campus.

Extension center is named for senator

ORANGEBURG - State Sen. John W. Matthews Jr. has been honored by his alma mater, as South Carolina State University named its 1890 Extension Center in his honor.

Mr. Matthews said the naming of a building at his alma mater ranks near the top of the list of awards and recognitions he's received over his lifetime.

"This day ... will be the most proud moment that I can remember in my lifetime, to be honored by an institution from which you graduated," he said Friday.