Ten at the Top
Upstate News

April 1, 2013 - Vol 4, Issue 4
April 4
Upstate Elected Officials Meeting 
BMW Zentrum - 3:30-5:00 p.m. with reception to follow
Click Here to Register 

April 25
Upstate Workforce & Skill Development Stakeholder Meeting
Palmetto Bank - 2:30-4:30 p.m.

May 22-23
Community Vibrancy Workshops
May 22 - 9-11 a.m. - USC Upstate
May 22 - 3:30-5:30 p.m. - Greenwood
May 23 - 9-11 a.m. - Clemson
May 23 - 3-5 p.m. - Kroc Center

June 6th
Our Upstate Vision Forum - Natural Resources
CU-ICAR - 3:00-5:00 p.m. with reception to follow
Click Here To Register
Join Our Mailing List!



Taylors Elementary and A.J. Whittenberg Elementary School of Engineering  have become the first Greenville County Schools to receive a Clean Air Upstate Grant in recognition of their participation in the South Carolina Department of Health & Environmental Control (SCDHEC) Breathe Better Anti-Idling Program.


Through a grant from the Hollingsworth Funds, Clean Air Upstate is providing individual schools in Greenville County that are participating in the Breathe Better anti-idling program with a one-time $400 grant. The Breathe Better program encourages school buses and parents to turn off their engines while waiting for students on school premises. It also includes an educational component for students on the importance of clean air and how we can all make a difference.


Taylors Elementary and A.J. Whittenberg Elementary School of Engineering have both been participating in the program over the last two years and are the first schools to receive the grants. Any other school in Greenville County that is currently participating in the Breathe Better program is eligible to receive the grant this school year. Schools can also start the program and receive the grant later this fall. The Clean Air Upstate Grant program will be enlarged for the 2013-2014 school year to include schools from across the entire 10-county Upstate region.


Clean Air Upstate is also developing an anti-idling program that encourages no-idling zones in shopping centers, malls and other parking areas across the Upstate.  


If your school, business or community is interested in learning more about the Clean Air Upstate program, please contact Alissa Ritzo Duncan at 864-283-2313 or check out the website www.cleanairupstate.org.  



water In 2013 the Our Upstate Vision Forum Series is focusing on Destination 2030 and looking for those BIG and BOLD ideas that will help ensure that the Upstate in 2030 is universally recognized as a leading place to live, learn, do business and raise a family.


Each forum will focus on a key issue that not only impacts the Upstate today, but will play a critical role in ensuring the region meets its long-term potential.


The next forum, on June 6th from 3:00-5:00 p.m. at CU-ICAR, will explore the important role that Natural Resources play in maintaining and growing the Upstate Economy.  


During the forum we will look at the current status of water, air and land as regional resources as well as look at what could impact the ability to maintain these valuable resources moving forward.   


The forum will also include a group discussion where we will try to pinpoint some of the BIG and BOLD initiatives and opportunities that if done across the Upstate would help ensure that the region in 2030 is universally recognized for the valuable role that natural resources play in the economic success of the Upstate.


The forum is free and open to the public, but guests are asked to register in advance. 


Click Here to Register 



Is your community or neighborhood looking for a "spark" or "great idea" to help enhance the economic and community vibrancy within your area? 


 On May 22-23, Ten at the Top is hosting a series of Community Vibrancy Workshops in locations across the Upstate. Each workshop will be interactive and provide great opportunity to engage with others who have dealt with similar challenges and opportunities when working to increase vibrancy in their communities.


Don't miss this opportunity to interact with others from across the region, state and country as we explore ideas that have helped increase community vibrancy around neighborhoods, downtowns, parks & recreation, events & programs and arts & culture.


All workshops are FREE and open to the public, but we ask that you register in advance.


Below is the workshop schedule.  Please click on each forum for more details and to register.

Wednesday, May 22
9-11 a.m. - USC-Upstate - Click to Register
3:30-5:30 p.m. - Greenwood Arts Center - Click to Register

Thursday, May 23
9-11 a.m. - Clemson City Hall - Click to Register
3-5 p.m. - Kroc Center (Greenville) - Click to Register


To help fight the growing obesity epidemic in our state, Governor Nikki Haley and S.C. Department of Social Services Director Lillian Koller recently announced a plan to request a waiver from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to help South Carolinians who participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) eat healthy and avoid obesity.

Currently, more than 878,000 South Carolinians participate in SNAP, commonly known as "food stamps," receiving cash benefits of $1.4 billion per year. The list of eligible food items that can be purchased under SNAP includes almost all consumable products, regardless of an item's nutritional value. South Carolina now seeks to update our SNAP eligible foods list to better reflect the health needs of our state.


Join us at this public comment forum. Tell us what food items you think should be removed from or remain on the SNAP list of eligible foods in South Carolina.


April 18th - 5:30-7:30 at Greenville County Council Chambers (County Square) 301 University Ridge, Greenville, SC 29601 


The April InnoVenture 2013 City Tour  will feature big ideas in each of nine cities across the Carolinas as well as conversation cafes involving both presenters and attendees.  The annual tour which leads up to the May 8-9 InnoVenture conference in Greenville, includes meetings in Spartanburg, Columbia, Greenville, Charleston, Charlotte, Bluffton-Hilton Head, Fayetteville, Winston Salem and Raleigh.  The events offer attendees an opportunity to discover new ideas, build relationships with influential people and learn new insights from other attendees. The meetings are free to attend but require advance registration. Additional information and registration are available here. 


The InnoVenture 2013 conference is set for May 8-9 at the TD Convention Center in Greenville. The InnoVenture program is built around high-impact Idea Conversations, which are a series of brief 8 minute 10 slide presentations followed by a Conversation Cafe to explore how those in the audience can contribute and benefit. Ideas are presented by leaders in major corporations, middle market companies, entrepreneurial businesses, and academic centers.  Focus areas for the upcoming conference include:

  • Sustainable Materials, Systems and Energy 
  • Intelligent Transportation and Mobile Services 
  • Manufacturing and Supply Chain Innovations 
  • Aerospace and Aviation Innovations

Please join us to discover new business ideas by participating in the InnoVenture 2013 Conference, as well as visits to nine cities across the Carolinas.  InnoVenture has a distinctive format of idea presentations and conversation cafes unlike other events you might attend. Get involved by registering to attend one of the InnoVenture events and presenting your own idea on innoventure.com.



On March 22nd, the Greer Commission of Public Works officially opened their fast-fill natural compressed gas station at 115 Duke Street in Greer, SC. Although CPW has operated a slow-fill station for their three compressed natural gas vehicles, the new CNG station will be the first public natural gas fueling station in Greer. The station will be open 24 hours a day to the public, and will allow the use of a credit card for payment.

The CNG facility is deemed a "fast fill" station, meaning that it is designed to fill a standard vehicle in the same amount of time as a regular gasoline station. The time it takes to fill your tank may be similar to that of a gasoline tank, however, the cost is vastly different. Gasoline in South Carolina is currently averaging about $3.50 per gallon. The gas gallon equivalent (GGE) of natural compressed gas, however, is only $1.80. This cost difference will mean big savings for Greer CPW and their customers. By cutting costs, the CPW will be able to reduce their operating budget, create major savings for their customers, and greatly reduce the dependency of foreign oil product.


Currently, Greer CPW operates three compressed natural gas vehicles and are planning to have two more vehicles running by the end of the second quarter of this year.  Although CNG powered vehicles cost more upfront, several state and federal incentives have been implemented to help offset some of the upfront costs. Incentives include tax deductions/credits, reduced license fees, reduced vehicle sales taxes, and lower registration fees.   




Governor Nikki Haley has established a Regulatory Review Task Force to evaluate the state's current regulatory burdens on businesses and to propose recommendations to relieve those burdens. As part of this review, the Task Force will evaluate reports submitted by agencies that identify current and proposed state statutes, rules, regulations, and policies that are a burden on South Carolina's economy.


SCDOT is hosting five public hearings across the state, including one in Greenville on April 2nd, to receive oral comments for consideration in preparing the agency's report. Those who attend the hearings are welcome to speak publicly for three minutes. Attendees also have the option to fill out a comment card in writing with their concerns. The comments cards can be left at the registration desk, or they can be mailed to the agency at the following address: SCDOT Office of Communications 955 Park Street - PO Box 191 Columbia, SC 29201  

 Another option is to forward comments via email at this address ContactUs@scdot.org. All comments mailed to SCDOT must be received by April 10, 2013. which has been set up to accept comments on this issue. You do not need to be present at any of the five hearings to submit comments via email.


Tuesday, April 2 - Greenville

12:00-1:30 p.m. 

Greenville County Library, Hughes Main Branch

Meeting Rooms B & C

25 Heritage Green Place, Greenville SC 29601



Thanks to a partnership between Ten at the Top and WSPA-TV, it is now easier to access the comprehensive calendar and resources available on the Upstate Information Hub through a new mobile app that is available for both Android devices and Apple products.   

The app will now allow mobile users to easily access the hundreds of local calendar events and
more than a thousand local community resources from across the 10 counties of South Carolina's Upstate that are available on the Information Hub.
In addition to the events and resources available on the Information Hub, mobile users can also sign up for the weekly "Uniquely Upstate" e-newsletter
, which highlights the "hot events" happening across the region that weekend and also includes a feature story that showcases something unique about the Upstate.

Recent feature stories include: Women's History Month,  Football Showdown at the South Carolina All-Star College Football Game, Working for Cleaner Air in the Upstate, The Big Buck Cross Country MotorCross Race.  

If you have calendar events, resources or feature stories that you would like to see added to the Information Hub, please contact Meredyth Boaz (


TATT Logo Over the last three years, more than 80 organizations and individuals from across the Upstate have helped support the mission of Ten at the Top to promote collaboration and planning in the Upstate by donating funds or services as either a continuing funding partner (commitment of at least three years), annual funding partner or event sponsor.


Each month we will be highlighting some of these organizations that recognize the value of regional collaboration, planning and partnerships across the 10-county Upstate region as we work together to ensure that the Upstate remains a great place to live, learn, do business and raise a family for generations to come.


This month we want to thank our Continuing Funding Partners (three-year funding commitments) at the highest levels:


Regional Visionary: BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina 


Regional Steward: GSA Business, Greenville News  


Regional Benefactor: Greenville Hospital System  


Regional Partner: AnMed Health 


You can read the entire list of TATT Funding Partners on our web site. 

If your organization recognizes the value of regional collaboration, planning and partnerships and would like to become part of this prestigious group of local champions, please contact Dean Hybl (dhybl@tenatthetop.org) or go to the web site to download our pledge form.

Latest News
If your city, county or organization has news you want to share or an event you want to promote with people across the 10-county Upstate Region, send it to us and we will include it in the next Ten at the Top e-newsletter.
The TATT newsletter is typically distributed the first Monday of each month (except for when there is a holiday) to more than 6,500 residents across the Upstate. The deadline for submitting information is the Thursday prior to the first Monday of the month.

Send information about an upcoming event, special recognition or anything else you think is of regional interest to Meredyth Boaz