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Greenville Business Magazine

The Business Narrative: Charging Up

Oct 14, 2022 01:04PM ● By David Dykes

Governor Signs Executive Order to Coordinate State’s Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Rollout

S.C. Gov. Henry McMaster on Oct. 13, 2022, signed Executive Order 2022-31, which formalizes the governor’s efforts to coordinate the future roll-out of the state’s electric vehicle infrastructure.

The governor’s order prioritizes the state’s efforts to recruit electric vehicle-related businesses to South Carolina by training the state’s workforce to be prepared for the jobs related to the industry and establishing a “one-stop-shop” at the South Carolina Department of Commerce (Commerce) for businesses interested in investing in the state.

The governor’s executive order also creates an Interagency Working Group tasked with working collaboratively with stakeholders and local governments to develop a comprehensive plan regarding the strategic deployment of electric vehicle-related resources and infrastructure across the state.

The Working Group will be focused primarily on developing a plan for strategically placing electric vehicle charging infrastructure on South Carolina’s interstates and roadways.

The Working Group consists of the following agencies:

South Carolina Department of Transportation

Office of Regulatory Staff

South Carolina Department of Commerce

South Carolina Department of Employment and Workforce (SCDEW)

South Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles

South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control

State Fiscal Accountability Authority.

“The only way South Carolina has been able to maintain its status as an automotive industry leader for nearly three decades is by strategically adapting as the industry innovates,” McMaster said. “As the industry continues to move towards electric vehicles, South Carolina will move along with it – working to ensure that our state will continue to be seen as the ideal place for manufacturers and suppliers to do business. Along with these investments comes good-paying jobs that our people will be ready to take on.”

Commerce will designate an “Electric Vehicle Coordinator” who will become the state’s “one-stop-shop” for all things related to the electric vehicle industry.

Along with creating a website providing information about all the state’s resources and opportunities in the sector, the coordinator will be the primary point of contact with the business community and industry stakeholders on electric vehicle-related issues.

Those issues may include economic investment, workforce development, emerging technologies, and infrastructure, and the Coordinator will connect interested parties with the appropriate state agencies to answer questions and facilitate further communication.

SCDEW will conduct a supply-gap analysis of the electric vehicle ecosystem by working with the business community, industry stakeholders, education providers, and other state agencies and departments, to evaluate electric vehicle-specific occupations and the projected demand for any relevant training, credentials, or certifications.

The agency will explore opportunities to enhance the state’s workforce development policies to specifically address the needs of the electric vehicle industry.

The agency will also identify and report to the governor and the General Assembly any recommended statutory or regulatory changes need to address these specific needs.

South Carolina is home to over 500 automotive companies and 72,000 autoworkers. The industry has a $27 billion economic impact on the state.

South Carolina Air National Guard Extends Operations at Columbia Metropolitan Airport

The South Carolina Air National Guard’s 169th Fighter Wing, which has been operating out of the Columbia Metropolitan Airport (CAE) since April due to runway renovations at McEntire Joint National Guard Base, will extend its flight training operations at CAE for several weeks, SCANG officials announced Oct. 13, 2022.

“When we started the renovations of our main runway in April, we had expected that this project would take approximately six months and consequently we had been aiming for an end of October completion date,” said Col. Quaid Quadri, 169th Fighter Wing commander.

“However, due to unforeseen circumstances during the construction process, we have had to adjust the completion timeline and will be staying at Columbia Metropolitan Airport several more weeks,” Quadri said.

Unanticipated conditions during the demolition of the existing runway at McEntire Joint National Guard Base created additional work which dictated more time required to finish the project, Quadri said.

The 169th Fighter Wing has been conducting its flight training operations as well as supporting its 24/7 homeland defense mission from Columbia Metropolitan Airport in Lexington County since April.

Approximately 200 military personnel from the SCANG have been working at Columbia Metropolitan Airport at any one time during the week.

On drill-training weekends, the number of SCANG personnel at the airport is closer to 300 people. The vast majority of SCANG personnel remained and will continue to remain at McEntire Joint National Guard Base for their work.

“We understand the challenges with large-scale projects and invite our partners with the South Carolina Air National Guard to continue this temporary relocation as long as they need,” said Mike Gula, CAE executive director.

“Our ultimate goal is to ensure we’re supporting our military community in every way we can.”

SBA Announces Over $4 million in New Funding to Expand Veterans Business Owner Outreach

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced a new funding opportunity for up to $400,000 to be awarded to up to 12 entities including private organizations, colleges and universities, private sector firms, nonprofit organizations and state, local or tribal governmental agencies to provide critical training and counseling to aspiring and existing veteran small business owners as a Veterans Business Outreach Center (VBOC).

The news comes ahead of Nations Veterans Small Business Week 2022, one of the agency’s flagship events, taking place Oct. 31 – Nov. 4.

Organizations across Alaska, Central California, Colorado, Kentucky, Nebraska, Iowa, Nevada, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, and South Florida may apply for a portion of the total $4.1million in funding available for this program in Fiscal Year 2023.

Each award is made for a base project period of 12 months, with four 12-month option periods, starting May 1, 2023.

Additional information about the funding opportunity, including specific coverage areas and instructions on how to apply, can be found at and by searching “SB-OVVB-23-001.”

With the SBA funding, grant awardees will be able to provide training to transitioning service members and military spouses through the Boots to Business entrepreneurship training program, which is part of the Department of Defense’s Transition Assistance Program.

Additionally, applicants will provide counseling, technical assistance, financial skill development, comprehensive business assessments, and mentoring services to veterans, transitioning service members, Reserve and National Guard members, and military spouses interested in starting or growing a small business.

The Cliffs Announces Q3 2022 Sales

Cliffs Realty, the official brokerage of The Cliffs, announced strong real estate sales through Q3 2022 by its brokerage teams totaling $180,762,443 across 197 transactions. That represented an increase in volume from the same period last year.

In The Asheville Region, which encompasses The Cliffs at Walnut Cove, the brokerage reported total sales of $40,817,191 across 32 transactions through Q3 2022. That represented a 576 percent increase in sales volume and a 300 percent increase in transactions from the same period last year.

The top-selling property for The Asheville Region was a three-bedroom, 3.5 bath home at 19 Nestlewood Drive in the community’s Wildwood enclave which sold for $1.75M.

In The Mountain Region, which consists of The Cliffs at Glassy, The Cliffs at Mountain Park and The Cliffs Valley, Cliffs Realty reported total sales of $63,375,205 across 84 transactions.

The highest transaction in the region was the $4.675M sale of 15 Hidden Mountain Way at The Cliffs Valley, a mountain home custom designed by renowned architect, Stephen Fuller, which marked the highest home sale in the history of the community.

In The Lake Region, which includes The Cliffs at Keowee Falls, The Cliffs at Keowee Springs and The Cliffs at Keowee Vineyards, Cliffs Realty reported $74,579,047 in sales volume across 81 transactions.

The highest sale through Q3 2022 was a custom-designed home from Cliffs Builders at 126 Waterfern Court at The Cliffs at Keowee Springs which sold for $6,237,500 – the highest sale ever recorded on Lake Keowee.

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