Saturday, November 6, 2021

McKie Fails to Report R2 Income

Every year every school board member is required to file a Statement of Economic Interests Report (SEI) with the South Carolina Ethics Commission. Most do.

Amelia McKie has racked up $57,100 in fines payable to the Ethics Commission, and you'd think that, after 7 years in public office, she would either know how to complete the forms herself or find someone who does.

When McKie filed her 2021 SEI, she neglected to report her income from the Richland 2 School District. 

There are several possibilities: 1. She decided not to accept the pay; 2. Since she isn't a legitimate trustee, the District didn't pay her; 3. She didn't think she was supposed to report it; 4. She didn't know what "Income from an [sic] S.C. Governmental Entity" was; 5. She didn't think a school board/district was a S.C. Governmental Entity. (The other six members of the board correctly reported R2 income.)

She did file her SEI on-time on January 12, 2021. Give her points for that.

But she failed to report her $9,600 income for the calendar year of 2020. I think it's a fair assumption that she received it. 

McKie reported personal income from NLLC, whatever that is. A filer is not required to report the amount of personal income.

McKie did not report any amount under Family Members' Income. Was she single by January 1, 2020?

All the other trustees and trustee-elect Holmes reported Richland 2 income. Holmes, Caution-Parker, Agostini, Scott (Elkins) each reported $9,600 from Richland 2. Manning reported $10,600. McFadden reported $1,600 (she took office in November 2020 and was paid for two months of 2020 service).

When a filer reports personal income from a business entity by its initials only, it is impossible to discern whether any conflict-of-interest exists. The Ethics Commission should require filers to spell out the name of the business. If a business is known by its initials, then there ought to be a public record of such a business in the office of the S.C. Secretary of State. The first result for NLLC from Google is Newfoundland Labrador Liquor Club. I'm going to guess that's probably not her source of income. Just a guess, of course.

Also, when the Ethics Commission allows a filer to use a P.O. Box, it is impossible to know where the filer lives. This is important when it is a school board trustee (or trustee-elect, as is the case with McKie) because, as I understand it, a trustee must reside in the school district.