Comp time on top of high executive pay supposedly justified by long hours of important work? The state Lottery Commission chairman today chastised Gamecock Passailaigue for this high-handed maneuver before going into an executive session. Will they hire, fire, promote, demote or discipline an employee, the only legal reasons for private discussions?

UPDATE: The honeymoon is winding down. When the Commission returned from executive session, a motion was made by Ben Pickard and seconded by Joe White to terminate Lottery chief Passailaigue, but it drew only those two votes and failed. It is, nonetheless, not a good note for Ernie P’s permanent record. White told Gerard Matthews that the commission is interested in getting the state’s help in resolving problems over personnel issues, where lottery practices have diverged from state general practices.

When asked if the motion was made because lottery salaries had always been an issue and this news was likely to further public distrust, White said, “I can only speak for myself, but I had a disagreement with [Passailaigue] concerning the issuance of comp-time to exempt employees which included the top three members of the lottery. There are other folks involved also. It has been reported that there are up to 500 hours have been awarded.”