Some folks are upset over a DNR-recruited “alligator specialist” shooting a 10-foot gator after it washed up in the Folly Beach surf, saying the reptile was too big and dangerous to corral back to its freshwater habitat. [P&C]

Conservationists are hoping state House lawmakers vote down proposals that would loosen coastal building restrictions that they say would exacerbate coastal erosion along developed beach communities. [The State, WBTW]

Following up Alison Piepmeier’s story on USC Upstate closing its campus gender studies center, The State and WYFF-TV published reports on the budget cuts which the school says results in the program’s closing. [CP, The State, WYFF]

State Sen. Robert Ford has been ordered to pay $45,000 over ethics violations that a Senate committee determined ocurred before he resigned his post late last year. $30,000 will be paid as a fine, and $15,000 in restitution will be paid toward the Children’s Trust. [AP]

Some political watchers think Ford’s ethics allegations emerging parallel to House Speaker Bobby Harrell’s well-publicized case could give some hope to action on ethics reform by Statehouse lawmakers, who mostly police their own colleagues’ violations themselves under state law. [P&C]

Chances are you saw the insane pictures this week of a vinyl bounce house like the ones kids everywhere love being picked up like Dorothy’s house in the Wizard of Oz. Turns out, S.C. regulators don’t do too much regulatin’ to keep an eye on those. [WYFF]

A senior White House official has been assigned to oversee a VA review of hospital policies after well-publicized reports of patient safety concerns at some medical facilities, including in South Carolina. [AP]

Talking with T+L, Stephen Colbert dishes on some of his favorite Charleston spots. [T+L]