“I plan on getting rose after rose after rose until I get a ring on the finger.”

Folly Beach resident Stephanie Tipper on the premiere episode of The Bachelor: An Officer and a Gentleman on ABC. Tipper is one of four ladies picked from the Lowcountry to compete for the Navy sailor’s affection.

Goodloe-Johnson Looks West

The Lowcountry was surprised to learn last week that embattled superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson had been approached by the Seattle School District to take the reins of their troubled program and that she was one of two finalists for the job.

“I’m very happy here,” she said. “But it’s a great professional opportunity.”

The Seattle district has said it’s looking for a superintendent with K-12 experience in an urban district and it was likely the Charleston district’s success at urban schools like Sanders-Clyde Elementary that got Goodloe-Johnson to the final two.

She took a trip to Seattle at the end of last week to interview again with its board and speak with community members. The Seattle board will then send a contingent to Charleston to tour our schools before making their final decision. They expect to decide before the end of April and would need the new superintendent to start in August.

With another year still left on her contract, Goodloe-Johnson says that she isn’t looking for opportunities to leave, but couldn’t pass this one up when approached. As for the Charleston Plan for Excellence, she says that the foundation is in place, but progress has to continue on fairly funding our schools and closing the achievement gap.

“The work is not yet finished, that’s for sure,” she says. —Greg Hambrick


That’s the number of named storms expected this hurricane season, with a 74 percent chance that a major storm will impact the U.S. coast. Source: The Associated Press

Ease My Pain, Mary Jane

A S.C. bill that would allow patients suffering from pain that may be alleviated by marijuana to possess up to six plants or an ounce of marijuana has been recommended for a second subcommittee hearing. Bill S. 220’s lone sponsor, the late Sen. William Mescher (R-Pinopolis), passed away this week, and it will likely require a showing of public support to move the bill forward. Mescher’s late wife was told by doctors that the plant could ease her suffering during her battle with lung cancer. The bill would require eligible patients to register with the state and receive an ID card. Sen. Mescher saw concerns about addiction in a terminal patient as senseless and regarded marijuana as “no different than morphine or any other painkiller that a doctor can prescribe.” The second hearing was called to allow more people to speak, but it will require quick action to get through the Senate before the May 1 deadline. —Stratton Lawerence


That’s the amount in investments that has gone missing, according to a lawsuit filed against Al Parish. The local businessman and economics professor has recently claimed he has amnesia. Source: The Post and Courier

“Such a ‘review’ requirement by the state, in my view, would likely be held as constitutional as long as there is no requirement and no effort is made to force an unwilling patient to view an ultrasound image against her will.”

State Attorney General Henry McMaster having second thoughts about a bill awaiting approval by the state Senate requiring women to view an ultrasound prior to an abortion. Source: The State

Stagnant Port

CaroLinks, the Charleston-based company that had hoped to bring barges up the Cooper River to Santee, has yet to purchase the property they plan to build an 800-acre inland port and distribution center near the intersections of I-95 and I-26. They withdrew their permit for barging soon after our December feature story on the topic, and appear to have made little headway towards their projected 2008 opening of the facility. Last week they entered into an operating partnership with the Weiser Companies, the developer that built North Charleston’s Centre Pointe, a 300-acre office and retail development. Weiser will handle the ground-breaking and physical building of the project, while CaroLinks will handle business and marketing. If they ever buy the land. —Stratton Lawrence


That’s how many acres of national forest have been proposed for sale to make up for fiscal year 2008 budget shortfalls, with 4,500 of those acres coming from Sumter and Francis Marion National Forests. Citizens can comment to U.S. Senators and Representatives on the budget until April 15. Source: Coastal Conservation League

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