What's New

HOUSE

The House started the week receiving a number of regulations and bill introductions. The Joint Transportation Review Committee's Final Report of Qualifications was received.

On Tuesday, Representative Tommy Pope (R-York) discussed H. 3188, a bill related to Campaign Contribution Limits and H. 3184, the State Ethics bill. Both bills resulted in a number of questions from House members. The House continued debating the bills for the next few days before giving third reading to the Ethics bill, which will now go to the Senate.

The House Transportation Infrastructure and Management Ad Hoc Committee met Tuesday to discuss a draft proposal addressing issues in the Department of Transportation and some funding aspects. The first proposal component would allow the Governor to appoint the Highway Commission and the Commission to appoint the Secretary of Transportation. The second component would expand the State Infrastructure Bank Board to 13 members and lower the project threshold from $100 million to $25 million. And the third component addressed the transfer of local roads back to counties and outlined possible funding options.

SENATE

The Senate convened on Tuesday after focusing on subcommittee and committee work last week. There were several gubernatorial appointments received, and bills were referred to committees. Senator Larry Martin (R-Pickens) took the Senate floor Tuesday to give the Senate an explanation of S.1, the ethics reform bill. He said there was broad support for ethics reform throughout the State. Much of the debate in the Senate this week on the bill pertained to having an independent investigative committee and how appointments would be made to the group.

On Wednesday, the Senate convened for several hours working the Calendar and discussing the Ethics Reform bill. After lengthy discussion, the Senate adjourned to attend several legislative functions and left the bill in Interrupted Debate.

On Thursday, Judiciary Committee Chairman, Senator Larry Martin (R-Pickens) stated that since a number of members had issues with the bill, he asked that they work with Judiciary staff to draft amendments to take up next week. He wants to move the bill to the House next week.

The Senate Judiciary Committee met this week and gave a favorable as amended report to S.11, a bill requiring political entities to produce agendas 24 hours prior to a meeting and a super majority vote to the change the agenda.

On Thursday, the Governor announced the creation of the South Carolina Domestic Violence Task Force. She also announced that she would personally Chair the group. The task force’s main goals will be to collect data from counties around the State, identify specific problems causing domestic violence, and implement solutions for combating and preventing domestic violence.

South Carolina has consistently ranked at the top in the nation for women killed by men in domestic-violence related incidents.

Top News Articles

SC gets almost $10M from feds for homeless programs 

South Carolina is receiving almost $10 million from the federal government for programs to help the homeless. Read more

SC Supreme Court denies Gov. Haley’s, lawmakers’ request to rehear school-equity suit 

The S.C. Supreme Court has denied a request by Gov. Nikki Haley and state lawmakers to rehear a landmark, two-decades-old school-funding lawsuit. Read more

Report: Volvo could put new plant in S.C. 

South Carolina is reportedly on the short list of possible sites for Volvo to build a manufacturing facility. Read more.

Rural areas in SC joining jobs recovery 

End-of-year jobless numbers show that the recovery from the worst recession in a generation finally reached the state’s poorest counties in 2014, but the expansion may be slowing in South Carolina’s most prosperous urban areas. Read more.

Offshore drilling stirs waters in South Carolina 

Environmental groups in South Carolina ripped a new federal plan that could lead to oil and gas drilling off the Palmetto State’s coast, saying the Obama administration’s proposal Tuesday threatens to pollute the beaches that draw vacationers here. Read more.

Boeing’s first North Charleston-built 787 ‘Dash-9’ Dreamliner rolls off production line 

The first Dash-9 Dreamliner to be built at Boeing Co.’s North Charleston campus rolled off the production line Monday and is slated for delivery to United Airlines in early March, Boeing officials said Tuesday. Read more.

S.C. State vows to improve 13.7% graduation rate 

Struggling S.C. State University wants an added $13.7 million from House budget writers to pay off a $6 million state loan and improve operations at the college, which has one of the worst graduation rates in the state. Read more.

Rite Aid officially announces $90M facility, plans to create 600 jobs 

Spartanburg County's economy got another shot in the arm Wednesday. Rite Aid Corp. officially announced its plan to consolidate three distribution centers into a new facility on a portion of a 1,400-acre site owned by Johnson Development Associates off Interstate 85 between highways 9 and 221. Read more.

Bose in Columbia to close in September 

Electronics manufacturer Bose Corp. will close its Columbia operations this fall and eliminate all 300 positions at the plant, the company said Thursday. Read more.

Uber cleared to operate in South Carolina 

The app-based car ride service Uber is legal in South Carolina — for now — after state regulators Thursday granted the Silicon Valley-based company a temporary license to operate. Read more.

Gov. Nikki Haley heading task force confronting culture of domestic violence

Victims’ advocates on Thursday applauded Gov. Nikki Haley’s creation of a domestic violence task force that aims to change a culture in South Carolina that has enabled abusers and led to the deaths of hundreds of women. Read more.

Ex-SC lieutenant governor, senator gets $122,000 state job 

Yancey McGill has a new state job that pays $122,000 a year.The Democrat, who was lieutenant governor for half a year and a state senator for a quarter-century, has taken a job as state director of the S.C. Office on Aging, working for new Lt. Gov. Henry McMaster. Read more.

Graham: I've got what GOP needs in 2016 

Blunt-spoken Lindsey Graham is a vocal supporter of the Iraq War, a deal-cutter on immigration and a backer of President Barack Obama’s Supreme Court nominees. Read more.

Trident Technical College ends fiscal 2014 with $3 million in surplus funds 

All financial health indicators are on the right path at Trident Technical College, but the college will need to prepare for possible changes in the next fiscal years, according to Scott Poelker, vice president for finance and administration. Read more

Meetings and Events

February 3, 2015

6:00  Legislative Reception, by SC Economic Developers Association – Capital City Club

7:00  Legislative Reception, by Atlantic Institute – Capital City Club February 4, 2015

8:00   Legislative Breakfast, by SC Commission for the Blind – Blatt 112

12:00 Legislative Luncheon, by Wil Lou Gray Opportunity School – Blatt 112

6:00   Legislative Breakfast, by Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce – Clarion Town House

February 5, 2015

8:00  Legislative Breakfast, by SC Children’s Hospital Collaborative – Blatt 112

Newly Introduced Legislation

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT: 

H. 3454 Hamilton: RELATING TO TAX CREDITS ALLOWABLE FOR A PORTION OF THE EXPENSES INCURRED BY A TAXPAYER IN THE REHABILITATION, RENOVATION, OR REDEVELOPMENT OF A TEXTILE MILL SITE  EDUCATION: 

H. 3438 Cobb-Hunter: TO IMPOSE A MANDATORY EMPLOYEE FURLOUGH PROGRAM AT SOUTH CAROLINA STATE UNIVERSITY 

H. 3453 Forrester: SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT A STUDENT ENROLLED AT A PUBLIC INSTITUTION OF HIGHER LEARNING AND A STUDENT ORGANIZATION OFFICIALLY RECOGNIZED BY A PUBLIC INSTITUTION OF HIGHER LEARNING MAY BE REPRESENTED BY AN ATTORNEY OR A NONATTORNEY ADVOCATE AT A DISCIPLINARY HEARING BEFORE THE INSTITUTION 

S. 391 Young: RELATING TO IN-STATE TUITION RATES FOR MILITARY PERSONNEL AND THEIR DEPENDENTS UNDER CERTAIN CONDITIONS  EMPLOYMENT:

H. 3431 Sandifer: RELATING TO THE SCOPE OF AUTHORITY OF A POLITICAL SUBDIVISION TO SET MINIMUM WAGE RATES  HEALTHCARE: 

H. 3448 Hardee: SO AS TO ENACT THE "AIR AMBULANCE AFFORDABILITY ACT" 

JUDICIARY: 

S. 9 Cleary: RELATING TO THE PROHIBITION ON LOTTERIES AND THE EXCEPTIONS TO THIS PROHIBITION 

H. 3184 Pope: RELATING TO THE STATE ETHICS COMMISSION AND ITS MEMBERSHIP 

H. 3433 Erickson: SO AS TO ENACT THE "DOMESTIC VIOLENCE REFORM ACT" 

H. 3441 Norman: RELATING TO THE VIDEO RECORDING OF THE INCIDENT SITE AND THE BREATH TEST SITE OF A PERSON CHARGED WITH OPERATING A MOTOR VEHICLE WHILE UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF ALCOHOL OR ANOTHER ILLEGAL SUBSTANCE 

TRANSPORTATION/INFRASTRUCTURE: 

H. 3445 Whipper: SO AS TO IMPOSE AN ADDITIONAL USER FEE EQUAL TO SEVEN CENTS A GALLON ON CERTAIN MOTOR FUELS