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More than twice as many people were hospitalized with flu symptoms over the past week compared to the same period last year, with 14 of the 38 total reported flu deaths across the state this season occurring over the same period. Source: P&C

New National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data analyzed by Mothers Against Drunk Driving shows that 44% of South Carolina highway deaths are caused by drunk driving, the highest rate in the nation and more than 10 percent higher than the national average. But a CofC professor and a state Department of Public Safety official say that MADD’s take on the data is misleading. Source: S.C. Radio Network, P&C

The S.C. Ethics Commission voted to dismiss ethics complaints against state Attorney General Alan Wilson on Wednesday that he collected over-the-limit donations after he admitted fault, saying that the illegal contributions were unintentional, and refunded the money to donors. Commission members dismissed the complaint partially because they could not get in touch with the person who filed the complaint, leading some to believe that they were frivolous filings. Source: P&C

A bill floated in the state Senate by Republican Sen. Larry Martin of Pickens would revoke the right of domestic abusers to possess firearms and ammunition or carry a concealed weapon. Source: The State

Upstate Congressman Mick Mulvaney laid his cards on the table on Tuesday afternoon after the U.S. House voted to re-elect Speaker John Boehner to continue leading in the new Congress despite the attempts of some conservatives to oust the speaker: “This was an effort driven as much by talk radio as by a thoughtful and principled effort to make a change.” Source: The State, Mulvaney

After the shooting in a Paris satirical newspaper yesterday, U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham said on CNN that members of the press to remain vigilant: “People in your business need to be concerned.” Source: NYT, Politico

After meeting for nearly five-hours on Wednesday, Charleston zoning officials approved 19 of 37 total proposals to remove grand or protected trees from several sites in the city. Source: P&C

A Charleston school board committee voted 3-2 against a proposal to extend the contract of district diversity consultant Kevin Clayton for another year. The proposal will go before the full board next week. Source: P&C

Last year was the deadliest year for fire deaths in S.C. since 2000, said the State Fire Marshal’s Office.

Three years ago, according to a watchdog group, the federal budget office directed the Savannah River Site near Aiken to stop redirecting money marked for cleanup into its program to develop small nuclear reactors. Source: The State