Palmetto Goodwill (copy)

Summer Hatley, vice president of donated goods for Palmetto Goodwill leads a tour  in 2018, of the Goodwill store on Rivers Avenue. The company employs almost 400 disabled persons across the state. file/Brad Nettles/Staff

As we celebrate 40 years of service to coastal South Carolina, I want to take time to thank every person who has ever donated to Palmetto Goodwill, supported our events, shopped in our stores, partnered with us or volunteered their time.

When Palmetto Goodwill opened its doors in 1979 with six employees and a $90,000 budget, nobody envisioned the immense impact it would have, providing training, employment and community services to more than 400,000 people and placing 19,157 into new jobs during that span.

We are proud that more than 90 cents of every dollar we generate from our business services and through the sales of donated items continues to provide these same services in the communities we serve.

These revenue streams enable Palmetto Goodwill to annually provide over 41,000 services to more than 15,000 individuals, and assist with the placement of more than 3,000 people into new jobs.

The unsold donations we receive also result in more than 16 million pounds of waste and e-waste being diverted from area landfills.

I truly believe Goodwill founder the Rev. Edgar Helms would be proud of the work we have done over the past 40 years. But I also believe he would encourage us to continue moving forward with new initiatives that help more people overcome their barriers to employment and become more self-sufficient and prosperous.

As Palmetto Goodwill continues to grow and evolve, we are humbled and grateful for the community support. It helps us serve a greater good, and we remain committed to being a valued provider of education, training and employment services to those in need.

On behalf of our board of directors, employees, partner agencies and, most importantly, the people we serve, I want to thank you. We are truly grateful for your contributions and continued support, and we promise to make our next 40 years even more successful.

ROBERT SMITH

President and CEO

Palmetto Goodwill

Eagle Drive

North Charleston

Santee Cooper

The Sept. 29 Post and Courier editorial about the need to reform the governance of Santee Cooper shed some light on one of the big reasons the Mount Holly aluminum smelter in Goose Creek curtailed its capacity by 50%, costing at least 300 employees good-paying jobs that helped support families and our community.

Tom Kemmerer

Washington Town Road

Summerville

Keep Hwy. 61 trees

I wasn’t surprised to read that flooding has cost South Carolina $438 million over the past five years. The state has created this problem with development. Bees Ferry Road, once lined with forests, met its demise with bulldozers. Now when a good rain comes, the homes along the road and church parking lots are flooded.

Charleston councilman calls to ban flood-worsening building practice for new development

I recently attended what was supposed be a public DOT meeting, but I was told no one was allowed to make oral comments and a decision had been basically made. Two alternatives were discussed, one destroying about 50 trees, the other about 250 trees (at least 18 inches in diameter) along S.C. Highway 61 just past Middleton Place.

I was told the reason the trees were to be removed was that drivers had run into them. But some quick research shows that about a third of fatalities are caused by drunken driving, and speed is right there among the top causes along with distracted driving.

Driver error causes about 85 percent of accidents. I’ve never seen a highway patrolman writing a tree a ticket.

When I was young sailor, I used to put about $1.50 in gas into my Volkswagen Beetle and drive my beautiful wife up Ashley River Road under the canopy of trees to Middleton.

I didn’t have the money for a membership so we’d park by the horse fence and just watch the horses. I would also take my visiting mom from Indiana to look at the horses. She said, “I understand why you stayed in Charleston and didn’t come home after Navy service.”

Keep Ashley River Road beautiful. Tourism is S.C.’s greatest source of revenue. Build an alternative to bypass Highway 61.

Once it is lost, it will be gone forever. If there were no trees at all, there would be more speeders and more deaths. More road means more speed. Think about it.

Dick Winters

Pinehurst Avenue

Charleston

Google water

So Google gets the OK to pull 549 million gallons of water a year from an aquifer shared by Mount Pleasant Waterworks and other utilities.

SC approves Google permit to pull 549 million gallons annually from groundwater aquifer

What a disgrace. This is a classic example of letting Big Brother take care of you.

I attended the Sept. 30 Charleston-area water review committee meeting and two things were evident.

• The committee recommended denial of Google’s request and approved Mount Pleasant Waterworks compromise request for its water permit.

• We, the people, lost the first round to the Department of Health and Environmental Control.

If we lose the second round, forcing the waterworks to buy water elsewhere, be prepared to have water bills increase 10% to 15%.

Google’s good neighbor pleadings, along with its artificial intelligence, pales in comparison when all its future needs are kept secret.

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Be prepared because this issue will not go away soon or have a happy ending.It is disheartening knowing that even as we live in a democratic republic, more and more of our lives are controlled by artificial intelligence.

John W. Matthews

Legends Club Drive

Mount Pleasant

C of C’s president

As a proud alum of The College of Charleston, I was delighted to read the article in the Oct. 11 Post and Courier about Dr. Andrew T. Hsu, the new president at the College of Charleston.

President Hsu's vision for the College of Charleston balances tradition, transformation

Dr. Hsu brings a fresh, new leadership style that is sure to further propel the college in national and international recognition.

Kudos to the college’s board of trustees, faculty, staff and students for selecting such an outstanding individual. What a wonderful way to start the next 250 years.

Catherine Musgrove

Old Ivy Way

Mount Pleasant

‘The Pearly Gates’

Hats off to the author of a Sept. 18 Post and Courier letter to the editor urging

a newer, more descriptive and in-vogue name for the bridge that connects the world to our town, Mount Pleasant.

I second the motion and humbly suggest that the architectural masterpiece be called “The Pearly Gates.”

Even as a nickname, this should be acceptable.

At any rate, the name is befitting the fashion of our time and the genius of those who had a hand in it.

So I ask you, how else should we enter the Holy City except through “The Pearly Gates”?

HENRY B. MIZELL JR.

Rifle Range Road

Mount Pleasant