Orthodontist in Levy, SC

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A smile is such a simple thing, but it can hold so much power. Smiling is universally considered to be a way that humans display joy. Smiles communicate to others how we’re feeling and are often the best way to break the ice when meeting a new person. A good-natured smile can work wonders, but if you’re like most folks, your smile may not be perfect. Every day, we hear stories from people who feel embarrassed, ashamed, or even scared to flash their smile. In fact, 75% of prospective orthodontic patients could benefit from straighter teeth. Thankfully, Winning Orthodontic Smiles offers affordable orthodontic solutions that give our patients a healthier mouth, more self-esteem, and more confidence.

At Winning Orthodontic Smiles, your smile is our passion. Our orthodontists and hygienists are dedicated to providing you with the best orthodontic care possible in a stress-free, comfortable setting. We know what a difference a beautiful smile can make, which is why we are so dedicated to giving our clients a winning smile they love.

Having served the Lowcountry for more than 30 years, we know that no two patients have the exact orthodontic needs. That’s why we offer a variety of treatment options to correct each patient’s unique concerns, along with payment plans that make braces affordable for every family. You can rest easy knowing that our team specializes in the latest innovations in the field of orthodontics. This allows us to treat our patients in the most efficient, affordable, and aesthetically pleasing ways possible.

A few of our orthodontic treatment options in South Carolina include:
  • Invisalign®
  • Invisalign® Teen
  • Clear Braces
  • Traditional Braces
  • Early Treatment
  • Adult Treatment

If you’re looking for an orthodontist in Levy, SC, who is professional, trustworthy, and compassionate, look no further than Winning Orthodontic Smiles. Your pathway to a beautiful smile starts by selecting the orthodontic treatment option best suited for your needs.

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Invisalign Treatment

Invisalign® Treatment in Levy, SC

Over the last few years, Invisalign® has become one of the most popular and effective orthodontic treatment options in South Carolina. For those looking for a convenient, comfortable, discreet way to realign their teeth, Invisalign® should be on your shortlist.

What Is Invisalign®?

Invisalign® is a treatment used by orthodontists in Levy that straightens patients’ teeth without traditional braces. Invisalign® works using a succession of custom trays that cover your teeth, which gently pull them into proper alignment over time. Each custom tray brings your teeth closer to their final position. Treatment times vary depending on how severe your case is but typically don’t last longer than two years. Once treatment is complete, you may need a retainer for the longest-lasting results.

Since they are clear, most patients find Invisalign® less noticeable than traditional braces. Unlike metal braces, Invisalign® can be removed while eating, meaning patients don’t have to worry about damaging their trays with certain foods. Invisalign® is great for people of all ages and has become a top choice for teens and adults alike.

Invisalign® works well for patients who have:
  • Crooked teeth
  • Gapped or spaced teeth
  • Overcrowded teeth
  • Overbites, Underbites, and Crossbites

How Does Invisalign® Work?

Invisalign® works for most patients in a three-step process:
Initial Consultation

Initial Consultation

You will meet with your Invisalign orthodontist in Levy, SC. During this consultation, your doctor will take a 3D digital scan of your teeth. From there, they will put together a comprehensive treatment plan customized to your needs. The best part? Before you leave, they will give you a sneak peek at your new smile using an innovative scanner.

First Fitting

First Fitting

During this step, your orthodontist will make sure that your custom aligners fit correctly. If you have any questions, this is the perfect time to ask. Before you leave, your doctor will let you know what to expect over the coming weeks and months. Treatment completion times will vary for patients, but you should see early results in just a few weeks. During this, you will check in regularly with your orthodontist.

Love Your Smile

Love Your Smile

Love Your Smile – Once your treatment is complete, it’s time to show off your new smile to as many people as possible! Be sure to ask your orthodontist if you will need to use a retainer to keep your teeth straight over the long haul. The last thing you want is for your teeth to shift gradually back into their original positions.

Invisalign® vs. Traditional Braces – Which is Right for You?

With so many great teeth straightening options available today, it can be hard to settle on a treatment choice. One of the most common questions we get revolves around which treatment is better: Invisalign® or traditional braces? The answer to that question is nuanced since every patient will have different needs. A younger patient with slightly crooked teeth might benefit from the discreet features of Invisalign®. On the other hand, an older patient with a severe underbite might benefit more from the reliability of traditional braces.

Invisalign® vs. Traditional Braces–Which is Right for You?
Keep in mind the following highlights, which will help you remain informed when doing your research:
Are They Removable? Invisalign® trays can be removed. Traditional braces cannon.
  • Treatment-Length-icon

    Treatment Length

    Invisalign® treatment can last anywhere from six months to two years. Treatment times for traditional braces can last from one to three years. Each time frame can vary depending on the patient’s individual case.

  • Orthodontic-Visits

    Orthodontic Visits:

    With Invisalign®, patients visit their Invisalign dentist in Levy, SC, every three months. With traditional braces, patients can expect to visit every month or every other month.

  • Cleaning-icon

    Cleaning

    Regular brushing and flossing is recommended for patients using Invisalign®. A specialized floss threading tool and regular brushing and flossing are recommended for patients with traditional braces.

  • Benefits

    Benefits

    Invisalign® is discrete, comfortable, can be removed, and doesn’t require any food restrictions. Traditional braces offer consistent progress, are effective for severe cases, have time-tested reliability, and can be a good choice for cost-conscious shoppers.

Ready to learn more about Invisalign® in Levy, SC? Give our office a call, and we would be happy to get you scheduled for your first consultation.

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Adult Orthodontic Treatment

Are you craving a beautiful smile but feel that you’re too old for braces? You wouldn’t be the only adult to have that thought. However, the truth is that 25% of our orthodontic patients are now adults. At Winning Orthodontic Smiles, you’re never too old for braces!

We want you to know that a healthy, stunning smile is attainable no matter what age you are. Our orthodontist in Levy, SC, offers several treatments that are perfect for working adults and can help you decide if braces are right. If you decide that adult braces are the way to go, we have a number of options for you to consider. From traditional metal braces that offer time-tested results to more discreet options like Invisalign®, your new smile is more attainable than you might think. During your initial visit with our doctor, we will review all of your treatment options and help you choose the one you need for optimal results.

Adult Orthodontic Treatment

Benefits of Adult Braces

Most patients understand that a straighter smile is more aesthetic; however, not everyone knows that properly aligned teeth can improve your oral health. Here are just a few reasons why so many adults are optimizing their oral health with adult braces:

Benefits-of-Adult-Braces
More Confidence

More Confidence

If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your teeth look, you’re not alone. Millions of adults around the U.S. aren’t happy with the way that their oral aesthetics. Adult braces help restore your confidence and can give you a smile that you’re proud to show off. When you like the way your teeth look, you’ll be more likely to smile. This simple act makes you feel happier, reduces stress, and can improve your mental health. Plus, it makes people around you feel great too.

Less Bad Breath

Less Bad Breath

Few things are as nasty as speaking to someone with bad breath. We’ve all been there, but it is never any less embarrassing when someone tries to subtlety offer you a mint for your breath. What most folks don’t know is that misaligned teeth and bad breath are often connected. That’s because when your teeth are crooked or over-crowded, bacteria can find their way in between your teeth. This is an area that most toothbrushes can’t reach. With time, that bacteria builds up, and your breath begins to stink. When left unchecked, these bacteria can cause serious health problems.

Better Oral Health

Better Oral Health

When you have poor oral health, there are a number of health risks that should concern you. Misaligned teeth can cause bacteria to build up. Over time, harmful bacteria cause serious problems like cavities, tooth decay, and gum disease. Thankfully, orthodontic treatment can help you avoid severe tooth decay, gum recession, and bone loss. You can even reduce and prevent irregular tooth enamel loss pain associated with TMJ and TMD.

Enjoy More Foods

Enjoy More Foods

If you have never had a major problem with your teeth, you might not know that eating can be painful if you have misaligned teeth. This causes some patients to avoid foods that cause them pain. Adult braces can straighten your teeth and correct over and underbites for patients with severely crooked or crowded teeth. When you don’t have to worry about painful chewing or biting, you can experience the full joy of eating a delicious meal.

Improved Speech

Improved Speech

Having crooked teeth can make you feel self-conscious about your smile, but they can also affect how you pronounce certain words. If you’re having problems pronouncing words because your teeth are severely misaligned, adult braces can change your life. This is especially true for working professionals who speak publicly, take part in Zoom calls, and work over the phone. If this sounds like you, speak to our trusted Invisalign orthodontist in Levy, SC, about discreet ways to improve your oral health and speech at the same time.

Early Orthodontic Treatment

Your child’s early and teen years are a great time to consider orthodontic treatment. According to The American Association of Orthodontists, the optimal time for a child to receive their first orthodontic treatment is by age seven. When you treat your child for braces early, you have the opportunity to discover and correct oral issues before they become serious. Doing so gives your child a leg-up on their peers and saves you time and money in the long run.

The overall goal of early orthodontic treatment is to intercept the possible issue, eliminate the cause, oversee facial and jawbone growth, and make sure there is enough space for adult teeth. Depending on how your child’s teeth develop, they may need a second course of treatment after their permanent teeth have formed.

Early Orthodontic Treatment

A few common orthodontic problems that may require treatment for children include:

  • Crossbites – this happens when your child’s jaw shifts to one side.
  • Underbites – this occurs when your child’s front lower teeth are ahead of their front upper teeth.
  • Excessively spaced teeth
  • Extremely crowded teeth
  • Extra teeth
  • Missing teeth
  • Teeth that do not meet properly or don’t meet at all
  • Pacifier, finger, or thumb-sucking that affects your child’s jaw or teeth growth

The best way to learn whether your child will need early treatment is to speak with your orthodontist in Levy, SC. Dr. Travis, Dr. Katie, and Dr. Gavin are trained to spot subtle problems, even in young children. During your child’s initial consultation, you can expect one of three outcomes:

  • There is a problem that early orthodontic treatment may correct.
  • Treatment may be necessary in the future. We’ll keep an eye on your child’s oral health while their face and jaw matures.
  • There is no treatment necessary at this stage.

Latest News in Levy

Explained: Why a court ruling has raised fears of ‘Polexit’

Poland and the European Union suffered a setback in their already hampered relationship this week, after a Polish court provided a major challenge to the EU’s legal framework, effectively rejecting the primacy of EU law over Polish national legislation in certain matters.The controversial ruling was defended by Poland Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, who played down its implications and said his country is not an “uninvited guest” in the EU and therefore does not agree to be treated as a second-class country....

Poland and the European Union suffered a setback in their already hampered relationship this week, after a Polish court provided a major challenge to the EU’s legal framework, effectively rejecting the primacy of EU law over Polish national legislation in certain matters.

The controversial ruling was defended by Poland Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, who played down its implications and said his country is not an “uninvited guest” in the EU and therefore does not agree to be treated as a second-class country.

Many have described this as a move that could lead towards a “legal Polexit”, as it introduces deep issues in cooperation between the Polish and European courts. The ruling has therefore invited backlash from the bloc, and several other member states, triggered a national outrage in the country which thinks this could jeopardise Poland’s access to EU funds among other things. Several thousand Poles have taken to the streets to reaffirm their demand to stay in the bloc.

So what is the ruling that has triggered this tussle?

Poland’s Constitutional Tribunal on Thursday ruled that some articles of one of the European Union’s primary treaties were not compatible with the Polish Law. Essentially, it declared that EU law should not have primacy over every national legislation in Poland.

This legal challenge to the European bloc was brought by the Poland prime minister himself in March this year. This represents a one of a kind situation, as it is the first time since the formation of the EU that a leader of a member state has questioned its treaties openly in a constitutional court.

The ruling also says that Polish Judges should not use EU law to question their peers.

What has led to this ruling?

It all started when some new changes were introduced in the Polish Judiciary, especially since Poland’s nationalist Law and Justice party came to power in 2015. The ruling party brought amendments to the legal system that increased more government control over judges, thereby reducing judicial independence in some aspects.

These new changes were condemned by the European Commission as well as other international legal bodies, who accused the government of increasing political interference and control over the judiciary.

Adding to this, Poland introduced a new Supreme Court chamber which had the power to sanction judges for specific rulings. This chamber, according to critics, was also being used to silence and punish those judges who had spoken against the government.

The Commission asked the European Court of Justice (ECJ) to levy daily fines to Poland for not suspending the activities of this new SC chamber. The ECJ also ruled that the new system of appointing Polish judges infringes EU law. It was after this ruling that prime minister Morawieck brought the legal challenge in March.

How has the EU reacted to the latest legal challenge?

In a statement, the EU said the Polish challenge raises serious concerns in relation to the primacy of EU law and the authority of the Court of Justice of the European Union. It reiterated the founding principles of the EU’s legal order that clearly states its primacy over national laws of all its member states.

“We will analyse the ruling of the Polish Constitutional Tribunal in detail and we will decide on the next steps. The Commission will not hesitate to make use of its powers under the Treaties to safeguard the uniform application and integrity of Union law,” it said.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said she was deeply concerned by the actions of Poland. “I have instructed the commission’s services to analyse it thoroughly and swiftly. On this basis, we will decide on next steps,” she said in her first public statement on the matter.

Other member states like France and Germany have also reacted to this by reminding Poland of its obligations to the bloc. “Poland has a moral and legal obligation as a member of the European Union to abide by its rules completely and unconditionally,” the foreign ministers of France and Germany said in a joint statement issued on Friday.

Could this lead to a possibility of a “Polexit”?

After the ruling received widespread backlash, the Prime Minister reiterated the fact that Poland wants to stay in the EU and said the issue has become a bigger deal than it is. Morawiecki and another prominent political leader Jaroslaw Kaczynski have instead blamed the country’s opposition parties for spreading “fake news” regarding the exit to stoke fear in people.

On the possibility of a Polexit, Morawiecki took to Facebook and wrote, “this is a harmful myth, which the opposition uses for its own lack of ideas about Poland’s responsible place in Europe.”

However, others have different ideas of what this could lead to. Donald Tusk, the former European Council president and now the head of Poland’s largest opposition group Civic Coalition, said the country stared at a real possibility of an exit. “We have to save Poland, no one will do it for us,” he wrote on Twitter.

How have the Polish people reacted to this?

Reacting to the ruling, and reiterating their stance of staying within the EU, over 100,000 Poles took to streets on Sunday. Amid fears that Poland could leave the bloc, rallies were held across the entire country.

According to the organisers, protests were held in about hundred cities and towns, with over a hundred thousand turning up in the capital Warsaw alone. People could be seen waving the flags of Poland and the EU and shouting slogans like “We are staying.” Several members of the opposition, political activists and others were a part of these protests.

Even opinion polls have consistently shown a strong backing for EU membership among the voters, according to the BBC.

What could Poland lose amid all this?

The ruling has thrown Poland and EU’s relations into a state of crisis. Since the EU provides trade, jobs and other benefits to the country, this tussle could have an impact on that. EU officials were also expected to approve funds to Poland this month. However the last ruling complicates this, as some officials have called to freeze all kinds of financial flows to the country.

Economist Touts Advantages Of Proposed South Carolina Tax Changes

Yesterday, my news outlet published a report on some proposed changes to the South Carolina tax code – notably a piece of draft legislation from state senator Josh Kimbrell seeking a significant reduction in the state’s punitively high and regressive top marginal income tax rate....

Yesterday, my news outlet published a report on some proposed changes to the South Carolina tax code – notably a piece of draft legislation from state senator Josh Kimbrell seeking a significant reduction in the state’s punitively high and regressive top marginal income tax rate.

Regular readers of this news outlet are well aware that lowering income tax rates has been a priority of mine for many years …

“The Palmetto State is simply not competitive when it comes to its income tax rate,” I noted in a column back in December.

Lowering this anti-competitive rate is absolutely critical if South Carolina hopes to experience sustained employment and income growth – and facilitate the incubation and expansion of more small businesses and sole proprietorships.

Kimbrell’s proposal (.pdf) would scrap the state’s current income tax code and replace it with one flat income tax rate. Its most appealing provision? It would cut the state’s top marginal rate in half – from 7 percent to 3.5 percent – delivering as much as $500 million in annual tax relief to limited liability corporations and other businesses.

As I have previously pointed out, this top rate – which is the highest in the southeast – is extremely regressive in that it is assessed on all income above $15,400.

Beyond the top marginal rate reduction, Kimbrell’s plan would lower rates in several other state income tax brackets while providing for a standard deduction of $12,000 for single filers and $24,000 for married couples filing jointly.

The state’s corporate tax rate would be eliminated as part of the overhaul, too.

(SPONSORED CONTENT - STORY CONTINUES BELOW)

On the revenue generation side, the plan would get rid of “the vast majority of current exemptions to categories of goods with regard to the sales tax” – another punitively high levy in South Carolina. However, the proposal would leave in place the current sales tax exemption on groceries – which benefits all citizens (but especially low- and middle-income earners).

Late Thursday, I shared Kimbrell’s proposals with Rebecca Gunnlaugsson of Acuitas Economics in the hopes of getting her thoughts. The former chief economist for the S.C. Department of Commerce (SCDOC), Gunnlaugsson has made a name for herself in recent years by offering incisively insightful takes on high profile “economic development” deals and anti-competitive tax climates.

In 2019, for example, she exposed several flawed assumptions associated with a taxpayer-funded corporate giveaway to liberal billionaire David Tepper – owner of the National Football League (NFL)’s Carolina Panthers. Her work on the Panthers’ boondoggle sparked a renewed push for transparency and accountability regarding taxpayer-funded incentives doled out by SCDOC – a charge which has been led by state senators Dick Harpootlian and Wes Climer.

Last year, Gunnlaugsson published a study highlighting the extent to which South Carolina’s capital city of Columbia had become glaringly non-competitive from a tax standpoint – particularly its commercial property tax.

“Columbia’s commercial property tax rate equates to 3.2 percent of appraised property value, making it one of the highest rates in the nation,” Gunnlaugsson’s study noted. “Under these conditions, businesses are more likely to establish elsewhere.”

So … what did Gunnlaugsson think of Kimbrell’s plan?

“(The proposal) addresses perhaps the biggest problem in South Carolina’s tax code — the myriad of ad hoc deductions and exemptions which keep getting piled on every year that make it complex, unfair, unsustainable and unsupportive of economic growth,” Gunnlaugsson told me. “This plan seeks to create a simple, low rate, broad based system, which is fantastic.”

*****

DON’T MISS A STORY …

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She also offered positive feedback on Kimbrell’s plan to ditch the corporate income tax.

“Eliminating the corporate tax makes sense,” she said. “In addition to it being a double tax on earnings, it has so many specifics and loopholes that it is generally ineffective, unpredictable and raises little relative to the state budget.”

Gunnlaugsson also embraced the plan’s sales tax reforms.

“Our sales tax rate is (1) high and (2) obsolete,” she noted. “Around 70 percent of the economy is service-based, but the sales tax code for South Carolina and most states was developed back when goods were the primary economic driver.”

She did argue that the state should do away with its sales tax “holiday” in favor of “dropping the rate” across the board.

“Sales tax holidays are popular among legislators and large businesses (who stand to gain), but they do not facilitate permanent, low-tax, sustainable sales tax systems,” she said.

That is true … as I have frequently editorialized.

While Gunnlaugsson said she believed Kimbrell’s bill would require several technical changes to ensure conformity, she offered her support for its “overall concepts of low, broad, equal rates that minimize economic distortions.”

Stay tuned … my news outlet will continue keeping tabs on efforts by state lawmakers to provide long-overdue tax relief to Palmetto State citizens. You know, as opposed to what South Carolina legislators typically do – which is blow every penny of new money they receive on the same failed bureaucracies.

*****

(Via: FITSNews)

Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina and before that he was a bass player and a dive bar bouncer. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children. And yes, he has LOTS of hats (including the above-pictured Toronto Blue Jays’ lid).

Got something you’d like to say in response to one of our stories? Or an issue you’d like to address proactively? We have an open microphone policy here at FITSNews! Submit your own letter to the editor (or guest column) via-email HERE. Got a tip for a story? CLICK HERE. Got a technical question or a glitch to report? CLICK HERE.

GET SOUTH CAROLINA’S LATEST NEWS IN YOUR INBOX …

*****

Economist Touts Advantages Of Proposed South Carolina Tax Changes

Yesterday, my news outlet published a report on some proposed changes to the South Carolina tax code – notably a piece of draft legislation from state senator Josh Kimbrell seeking a significant reduction in the state’s punitively high and regressive top marginal income tax rate....

Yesterday, my news outlet published a report on some proposed changes to the South Carolina tax code – notably a piece of draft legislation from state senator Josh Kimbrell seeking a significant reduction in the state’s punitively high and regressive top marginal income tax rate.

Regular readers of this news outlet are well aware that lowering income tax rates has been a priority of mine for many years …

“The Palmetto State is simply not competitive when it comes to its income tax rate,” I noted in a column back in December.

Lowering this anti-competitive rate is absolutely critical if South Carolina hopes to experience sustained employment and income growth – and facilitate the incubation and expansion of more small businesses and sole proprietorships.

Kimbrell’s proposal (.pdf) would scrap the state’s current income tax code and replace it with one flat income tax rate. Its most appealing provision? It would cut the state’s top marginal rate in half – from 7 percent to 3.5 percent – delivering as much as $500 million in annual tax relief to limited liability corporations and other businesses.

As I have previously pointed out, this top rate – which is the highest in the southeast – is extremely regressive in that it is assessed on all income above $15,400.

Beyond the top marginal rate reduction, Kimbrell’s plan would lower rates in several other state income tax brackets while providing for a standard deduction of $12,000 for single filers and $24,000 for married couples filing jointly.

The state’s corporate tax rate would be eliminated as part of the overhaul, too.

(SPONSORED CONTENT - STORY CONTINUES BELOW)

On the revenue generation side, the plan would get rid of “the vast majority of current exemptions to categories of goods with regard to the sales tax” – another punitively high levy in South Carolina. However, the proposal would leave in place the current sales tax exemption on groceries – which benefits all citizens (but especially low- and middle-income earners).

Late Thursday, I shared Kimbrell’s proposals with Rebecca Gunnlaugsson of Acuitas Economics in the hopes of getting her thoughts. The former chief economist for the S.C. Department of Commerce (SCDOC), Gunnlaugsson has made a name for herself in recent years by offering incisively insightful takes on high profile “economic development” deals and anti-competitive tax climates.

In 2019, for example, she exposed several flawed assumptions associated with a taxpayer-funded corporate giveaway to liberal billionaire David Tepper – owner of the National Football League (NFL)’s Carolina Panthers. Her work on the Panthers’ boondoggle sparked a renewed push for transparency and accountability regarding taxpayer-funded incentives doled out by SCDOC – a charge which has been led by state senators Dick Harpootlian and Wes Climer.

Last year, Gunnlaugsson published a study highlighting the extent to which South Carolina’s capital city of Columbia had become glaringly non-competitive from a tax standpoint – particularly its commercial property tax.

“Columbia’s commercial property tax rate equates to 3.2 percent of appraised property value, making it one of the highest rates in the nation,” Gunnlaugsson’s study noted. “Under these conditions, businesses are more likely to establish elsewhere.”

So … what did Gunnlaugsson think of Kimbrell’s plan?

“(The proposal) addresses perhaps the biggest problem in South Carolina’s tax code — the myriad of ad hoc deductions and exemptions which keep getting piled on every year that make it complex, unfair, unsustainable and unsupportive of economic growth,” Gunnlaugsson told me. “This plan seeks to create a simple, low rate, broad based system, which is fantastic.”

*****

DON’T MISS A STORY …

*****

She also offered positive feedback on Kimbrell’s plan to ditch the corporate income tax.

“Eliminating the corporate tax makes sense,” she said. “In addition to it being a double tax on earnings, it has so many specifics and loopholes that it is generally ineffective, unpredictable and raises little relative to the state budget.”

Gunnlaugsson also embraced the plan’s sales tax reforms.

“Our sales tax rate is (1) high and (2) obsolete,” she noted. “Around 70 percent of the economy is service-based, but the sales tax code for South Carolina and most states was developed back when goods were the primary economic driver.”

She did argue that the state should do away with its sales tax “holiday” in favor of “dropping the rate” across the board.

“Sales tax holidays are popular among legislators and large businesses (who stand to gain), but they do not facilitate permanent, low-tax, sustainable sales tax systems,” she said.

That is true … as I have frequently editorialized.

While Gunnlaugsson said she believed Kimbrell’s bill would require several technical changes to ensure conformity, she offered her support for its “overall concepts of low, broad, equal rates that minimize economic distortions.”

Stay tuned … my news outlet will continue keeping tabs on efforts by state lawmakers to provide long-overdue tax relief to Palmetto State citizens. You know, as opposed to what South Carolina legislators typically do – which is blow every penny of new money they receive on the same failed bureaucracies.

(Via: FITSNews)

Will Folks is the founding editor of the news outlet you are currently reading. Prior to founding FITSNews, he served as press secretary to the governor of South Carolina and before that he was a bass player and a dive bar bouncer. He lives in the Midlands region of the state with his wife and seven children. And yes, he has LOTS of hats (including the above-pictured Toronto Blue Jays’ lid).

Got something you’d like to say in response to one of our stories? Or an issue you’d like to address proactively? We have an open microphone policy here at FITSNews! Submit your own letter to the editor (or guest column) via-email HERE. Got a tip for a story? CLICK HERE. Got a technical question or a glitch to report? CLICK HERE.

GET SOUTH CAROLINA’S LATEST NEWS IN YOUR INBOX …

*****

S.C. bill isn’t about medicine; it’s about legalizing marijuana in our state| Op-Ed

When was the last time we needed South Carolina legislation for a medicine to be prescribed by a doctor or dispensed by a pharmacy? When medicine goes through the normal FDA approval process, state legislation is not necessary. But, that’s not what we are dealing with when discussing marijuana. Doctors cannot legally prescribe it. Pharmacists cannot legally dispense it. There is no way to accurately dose it. Rather, this 55-...

When was the last time we needed South Carolina legislation for a medicine to be prescribed by a doctor or dispensed by a pharmacy? When medicine goes through the normal FDA approval process, state legislation is not necessary. But, that’s not what we are dealing with when discussing marijuana. Doctors cannot legally prescribe it. Pharmacists cannot legally dispense it. There is no way to accurately dose it. Rather, this 55-page bill is an attempt to legislate around the FDA approval process by creating a complex scheme to cultivate, process, and dispense marijuana that still violates federal law.

This bill ultimately allows people to vape, eat, or ingest marijuana that has not had any traditional medical review and is not approved by the FDA. This is a truly dangerous proposition. Perhaps this is why 77% of South Carolinians said marijuana should be regulated by the FDA in a 2016 Winthrop poll. It is not surprising that many proponents of this bill use words like “prescribe” when discussing marijuana. They do this to make us all think this will be handled like all other prescription medications. But the reality is this narrative is simply false. The marijuana allowed in this bill remains a Schedule 1 drug, which means it cannot be legally prescribed, cannot be legally dispensed by a pharmacy, and cannot be legally possessed by individuals without violating federal law.

In medical marijuana states, dispensaries with no in-house medical professionals pop up in local neighborhoods selling marijuana products with unknown potency, with no dosing instructions, and with flashy names designed to appeal to children. It is truly reprehensible the lengths that some of these companies will go to target our youth with these dangerous products. This is particularly true with vape products, edibles and oils, all of which are legalized under this legislation. In many cases, vape cartridges, oils and edible products contain unreasonably small serving sizes mixed with incredibly high percentages of THC. This is extremely dangerous, especially with regard to our children — our most vulnerable.

In South Carolina and throughout the country, marijuana is the number one reason for addiction and treatment admission for minors between 12 and 17 years old. I have spent my 43 years in law enforcement standing up for those who can’t stand for themselves. This is why I have consistently voiced my concerns about legalizing marijuana in any form. Of course, I am compassionate to those who are suffering from debilitating diseases and illnesses. However, this is why I support continued clinical trials; research; and forms of medicine that are legally obtained, FDA approved, prescribed by a physician, and dispensed by a pharmacist. This is what medicine is in the 21st century. This bill does not follow that model, which is why, in my opinion, this bill is not about medicine. It’s about legalizing marijuana in South Carolina.

Mark Keel has served as Chief of the S.C. Law Enforcement Division (SLED) since July 1, 2011.

This story was originally published April 4, 2021 1:00 AM.

S.C. bill isn’t about medicine; it’s about legalizing marijuana in our state| Op-Ed

When was the last time we needed South Carolina legislation for a medicine to be prescribed by a doctor or dispensed by a pharmacy? When medicine goes through the normal FDA approval process, state legislation is not necessary. But, that’s not what we are dealing with when discussing marijuana. Doctors cannot legally prescribe it. Pharmacists cannot legally dispense it. There is no way to accurately dose it. Rather, this 55-...

When was the last time we needed South Carolina legislation for a medicine to be prescribed by a doctor or dispensed by a pharmacy? When medicine goes through the normal FDA approval process, state legislation is not necessary. But, that’s not what we are dealing with when discussing marijuana. Doctors cannot legally prescribe it. Pharmacists cannot legally dispense it. There is no way to accurately dose it. Rather, this 55-page bill is an attempt to legislate around the FDA approval process by creating a complex scheme to cultivate, process, and dispense marijuana that still violates federal law.

This bill ultimately allows people to vape, eat, or ingest marijuana that has not had any traditional medical review and is not approved by the FDA. This is a truly dangerous proposition. Perhaps this is why 77% of South Carolinians said marijuana should be regulated by the FDA in a 2016 Winthrop poll. It is not surprising that many proponents of this bill use words like “prescribe” when discussing marijuana. They do this to make us all think this will be handled like all other prescription medications. But the reality is this narrative is simply false. The marijuana allowed in this bill remains a Schedule 1 drug, which means it cannot be legally prescribed, cannot be legally dispensed by a pharmacy, and cannot be legally possessed by individuals without violating federal law.

In medical marijuana states, dispensaries with no in-house medical professionals pop up in local neighborhoods selling marijuana products with unknown potency, with no dosing instructions, and with flashy names designed to appeal to children. It is truly reprehensible the lengths that some of these companies will go to target our youth with these dangerous products. This is particularly true with vape products, edibles and oils, all of which are legalized under this legislation. In many cases, vape cartridges, oils and edible products contain unreasonably small serving sizes mixed with incredibly high percentages of THC. This is extremely dangerous, especially with regard to our children — our most vulnerable.

In South Carolina and throughout the country, marijuana is the number one reason for addiction and treatment admission for minors between 12 and 17 years old. I have spent my 43 years in law enforcement standing up for those who can’t stand for themselves. This is why I have consistently voiced my concerns about legalizing marijuana in any form. Of course, I am compassionate to those who are suffering from debilitating diseases and illnesses. However, this is why I support continued clinical trials; research; and forms of medicine that are legally obtained, FDA approved, prescribed by a physician, and dispensed by a pharmacist. This is what medicine is in the 21st century. This bill does not follow that model, which is why, in my opinion, this bill is not about medicine. It’s about legalizing marijuana in South Carolina.

Mark Keel has served as Chief of the S.C. Law Enforcement Division (SLED) since July 1, 2011.

This story was originally published April 4, 2021 1:00 AM.

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