The state of South Carolina finally knows how many buildings and how much land it owns, after years of no one having any idea. Gov. Nikki Haley had issued an executive order for state agencies to compile the list, and it's finally finished.
She had been asking for an inventory of state property since she took office, and Gov. Mark Sanford, her predecessor, tried for eight years to get it. The list is now available on the state Budget and Control Board's website.
The state owns 7,815 buildings and 2,526 pieces of land.
Gov. Haley says, "We need to look and see how much of that we need to get rid of. How much of that can we consolidate? What do we have that the taxpayers are paying for that's not even being used? So our hope is that we're going to start to clean all of this stuff up, make sure that we're being as efficient as possible and as smart as possible with the properties that we have."
State treasurer Curtis Loftis, who's also a member of the Budget and Control Board along with Gov. Haley, says, "We've got to know what we own and we've got to know how to best use it. Some of it we might want to sell. Some we might need to raise the rent on. It just depends. But, as a landlord, if you want to be prudent, you've got to know what you own."
Most of the buildings are being used, but some are being only partially used, some are being held for future use, and some are considered surplus because they're not being used now and won't be for the next three years.
The list does not include how much the buildings or land are worth. Loftis says, "We're going to have to have some professionals help us with this. We'll get local realtors and maybe even national and international realtors, 'cause we've got a lot of valuable land. Some of this is big plantations. Some of it's waterfront property, some of it's downtown property, buildings, all sorts of things."
You can see the lists at http://www.gs.sc.gov/sb-ps/parcels/RPS-parcels.phtm