Greenville County, South Carolina
Greenville County is one of 46 counties in South Carolina. As of the 2010 census, its population was 451,225 making it the most populous county in the state. It is included in the Greenville–Mauldin–Easley Metropolitan Statistical Area. Its county seat is the city of Greenville.
Last rated on May 7, 2012.
- Council members listed with contact information.
- Meeting schedule, agendas, and minutes posted.
- Millage rates are posted. Local tax info provided.
- Building permits details and forms, along with zoning ordinances, are provided.
- Financial audit available.
- Budget is published.
- Public records requests can me made online, and County's policy is posted.
- Bids are posted.
- You can search public records online and the Register of Deeds serves as the Public Information Officer for the county.
- Department contact information is provided, but heads of departments and e-mails are not listed.
- Administrative employee names and e-mails details are not listed.
- Contracts are not online.
- Does not disclose if belongs to government sector lobbying associations.
The County's biennium budget for FY 2012 and FY 2013 totals $372,596,160.
|FUNDS||ADOPTED BUDGET FY2010||ADOPTED BUDGET FY2011||PROPOSED BUDGET FY2012||PROPOSED BUDGET FY2013|
The County's bases property valuation is estimated at $1.876 billion, a growth of 3% over the previous year. 60.95% of the County's budgeted revenue comes from the local ad valorem property tax.
The County is governed by a 12 member County Council. Members are:
|Butch Kirven, Chairman||District 27|
|Bob Taylor, Vice-Chairman||District 22|
|Joseph Baldwin||District 18|
|Jim Burns||District 21|
|Sid Cates||District 20|
|Joe Dill||District 17|
|Lottie Gibson||District 25|
|Willis Meadows||District 19|
|Xanthene Norris||District 21|
|Fred Payne||District 28|
|Dan Rawls||District 26|
|Liz Seman||District 24|
The current County Administrator is Joseph Kernell. Kernell was appointed by the County Council in January, 2004. The Administrator oversees the day-to-day operations of the county government, and carries out the directives of the County Council. The Administrator is also responsible for the annual budget. Kernell had previously served as County Administrator for St. Charles County, Missouri.
A county organizational chart can be found here.
A database maintained by the Journal Watchdog includes both administrative and elected officials' salaries. Elected officials' salaries are:
|Butch Kirven, Chairman||$27,470.97|
|Bob Taylor, Vice-Chairman||$24,037.14|
|All other members||$22,898.71|
The database lists 15 employees earning more than $100,000. The county's top five highest administrative salaries are:
|Joseph M. Kernell||County Administrator||$192,147.00|
|Mark W. Tollison||County Attorney||$147,467.00|
|Joseph F. Hansley||Deputy County Administrator||$136,832.00|
|Stephen D. Loftis||Sheriff||$128,861.00|
|Charles B. Simmons, Jr.||Master in Equity||$128,620.00|
Transparency & public records
Freedom of Information Act requests can be filed online here, with the County Attorney's office.
In 2005, Greenville County reported $20,000 spent on lobbying. 
- Official Greenville County Website
- Greenville County, SciWay
- Greenville County Quick Facts, U.S. Census Bureau
- Greenville County Schools Online
- Greenville County Sheriff's Office
Council meeting - low transparency
Greenville County Council meeting attendees are allowed three minutes to address “current agenda items” at the beginning of each council meeting. However, if the agenda item has had a previous “public hearing,” residents are not allowed to comment, no matter how long it has been since the item was mentioned. If the text amendment to an ordinance had no input or input from only one individual in the hearing, residents are still not allowed to comment at another meeting.
The only way to learn if an agenda item is in this category is by reviewing the list before the meeting starts. The agenda transcript doesn’t include information on items that are exempt from comment so residents must contact council members before the reading and vote to make their feelings known on matters.
- Meeting minutes
- Millage Sheets
- Tax Collector
- FOIA Request
- Public records
- 2012 Budget Message
- County Administrator
- County Elected Salaries, Journal Watchdog, Accessed May 7, 2012
- County Salaries, The Journal Watchdog, Accesses May 7, 2012
- Greenville County - Open Secrets
- "Greenville Council Squelching Public Input ," The Nerve, December 1, 2010