Gov. Haley announces first director of South Carolina's soon-to-be 17th Cabinet agency



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COLUMBIA, South Carolina — Gov. Nikki Haley announced Thursday that the director of the agency that handles much of state government's bureaucracy will be South Carolina's first Department of Administration secretary.

Haley named Marcia Adams to lead the agency that officially won't exist until July 1. It will be South Carolina's 17th Cabinet agency.

Adams has been the director of the Budget and Control Board since August 2011 and will remain in that role for the next six months. But Haley said she wanted to go ahead and make the announcement to help with the transition.

"This really was a no-brainer," she said of Adams' appointment. "This was one of the easiest decisions I've made."

A long-sought government restructuring law signed by Haley earlier this year divides the Budget and Control Board's wide-ranging divisions among several new and existing agencies. Most of the agency's workers will transfer to the new Department of Administration, giving the governor oversight of bureaucratic functions such as fleet and property management, mail, human resources and technology services.

The law's passage was a major victory for Haley as she sought re-election.

Former Gov. Mark Sanford fought unsuccessfully throughout his tenure to abolish the board, which is actually an agency overseen by a five-member panel of lawmakers. Though chairman, Sanford was often on the losing end of 3-2 votes.

In 2010, Haley managed to make a largely inside-the-Statehouse debate over an arcane agency a campaign issue, and abolishing what she called the "big, green, ugly monster" became a central part of her agenda. However, that five-member panel will still exist under another name, the State Fiscal Accountability Authority. Who will lead that new agency is unknown.

It will be overseen by the same five people — governor, treasurer, comptroller, and the chairmen of the House and Senate budget-writing committees — who will maintain authority over fiscal decisions such as bond approvals, purchasing and insurance reserves.

The first moves under the law occurred in July, as the agency's economic divisions become the Revenue and Fiscal Affairs Office.

Adams' salary will be nearly $193,000 on Jan. 1 as Budget and Control Board director. Her 4 percent increase was among 37 raises approved last week by the Agency Head Salary Commission.

It is unclear what Adams will make in her new role, in which she'll oversee fewer employees. The commission must decide that.

Thursday marked Haley's fifth Cabinet announcement since winning re-election.

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