Senate President Pro Tem Glenn McConnell is calling for management performance audit of financially ailing Patriots Point to avert a public bailout of the state-owned visitor attraction. In a letter to the Legislative Audit Council, a watchdog agency, he expressed his concern that Patriots Point "has drifted into a state of inertia and has become overcome by its liabilities."

The Mount Pleasant attraction borrowed $9 million from the state to repair its sinking warship Laffey without any means to repay those funds or even to bring the destroyer back. Adding fuel to the fire, Patriots Point has asked to spend $1.2 million on a parking lot.

Soaring costs

Travelers and tourism officials agree: Southwest Airlines can't touch down in Charleston fast enough.

Newly released figures from the government show that Charleston International Airport posted the biggest hike in airfares in the nation between the first quarters of 2009 and 2010, reflecting the departure of low-fare carrier AirTran last December.

The average ticket from Charleston jumped 16.1 percent year-over-year to $443, according to the report. Charleston also had the second-highest fares overall in the first quarter.

Digging in

The secular real estate market slowdown may not be over, but a North Charleston congregation, acting on faith, is moving forward on rebuilding its church in an otherwise stalled Berkeley County development.

Northwood Assembly said it will begin construction on a new $15 million church within weeks, marking the first major development within the planned 2,300-acre Carnes Crossroads project.

Northwood Assembly is relocating from its longtime location on Rivers Avenue after the church was destroyed by fire in 2006.

Rank ranking

South Carolina's image took a shot from Bloomberg BusinessWeek, which ranked the Palmetto State as the eighth laziest in the nation. The publication rolled together various government studies that examined the nation's sleeping habits, exercise patterns and time spent working. Louisiana took top spot in terms of laziness, but South Carolinians reportedly spend more time watching TV than any other state.