DSS Director, Lillian Koller, Resigns

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By News Department

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- The embattled director of South Carolina's Department of Social Services has resigned, a day before senators planned to take up a no-confidence resolution on her leadership.

Gov. Nikki Haley's office says she accepted Lillian Koller's resignation Monday. Koller's letter said it's become increasingly apparent that she's causing a distraction that's making it more difficult for DSS to continue improvements made at the agency during her tenure.

Her resignation comes a day before the Senate was expected to debate a bi-partisan measure saying the agency under Koller's leadership has failed to protect the state's abused and neglected children. Also this week, Koller was to testify a third time before a Senate panel investigating problems at the agency.

Haley has repeatedly backed Koller, despite calls for her ousting.

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Renee Reliant said on Monday, Jun 2 at 4:14 PM

Ms. Koller consistently turned a blind eye to CPS activities and failing practices during her tenure. It is a department she chose to ignore and was apparently clueless about. In picking and choosing what she "preferred" to concentrate on, (such as adoptions) the CPS workers also picked and chose what they wanted to handle----or NOT handle. As the leader goes, so go the people. Ms. Koller in effect unleashed a monster in Richland County, with CPS in other counties beginning to follow suit. I'd say the chickens have come home to roost. Let's hope Gov. Haley learned something from this embarrassing exercise. CPS is the front-line compared to foster care and adoptions work. When the foundation work crumbles, the rest of the building is bound to collapse. Praise to Mr. Lourie who dared to take the bull by the horns in this fiasco---not a popular act, but one that needed to be done. We hope he will continue down the path of improvement. There is a lot to get done.

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