Sprinkler veto called ‘reckless'

S.C. Gov. Mark Sanford was “reckless” to veto a bill that offered tax breaks for installing fire sprinklers, a firefighter representative said Thursday.

Firefighters criticized Sanford's veto of a bill they pushed after nine colleagues died nearly a year ago in a blaze at a Charleston Sofa Super Store. It was the deadliest single firefighting incident since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

Afterward, firefighters called for mandatory fire sprinkler systems. They backed legislation to give property and income tax breaks for businesses voluntarily installing them, saying sprinklers save lives, reduce property damage and protect firefighters.

The bill would have allowed local governments to decide whether to offer property tax breaks of up to 25 percent of a sprinkler system's cost with a dollar-for-dollar matching state income tax credit. Associated Press