What's New

On Tuesday, the House amended and gave final reading to the General Appropriations and Capital Reserve Fund Bills. Several House members took to the House floor to discuss their opinions of the budget. There was an amendment to add Columbia College and Converse College to the list of eligible institutions to receive funds under the Higher Education Excellence Enhancement Program. Representatives only addressed one other bill on their calendar before adjourning for the day.

The House spent the majority of their debate time Wednesday on South Carolina State University but agreed to adjourn debate on a resolution related to the institution and instead considered a Senate passed resolution.

On Thursday, the House cleared their calendar in order to prepare for a busy week starting Tuesday. Members gave third reading to six bills and second reading with automatic third reading Friday to four bills. Bills of interest include:

  • H.3663 - SCSU Board of Trustees 
  • H.3847- Speech Language Pathologist Assistants
  • H.3849 - Evaluations of Public School Teachers
  • H.3204 - Cervical Cancer Prevention Act

The Senate convened in a brief session on Tuesday, working through the Calendar and giving numerous bills readings. They spent some time discussing, S.229, the Pollution Control Act. Other bills of interest include:

  • S.167 – Licsenses related to hearing aids
  • S.339 – Mammograms
  • S.350 – SC Community Economic Development Act
  • S.413 – Pharmacists administration of influenza vaccines

Bills of interest that were passed on Wednesday include:

  • S.374 – Hearings for nonjudicial candidates
  • S.436 – Judicial Pledges and Elections

Senators met briefly in session on Thursday, moving through the Calendar and carrying over the majority of the uncontested calendar. Senators passed S.357, relating to immunity from liability for providing free health care services.

The Senate Finance Committee met Tuesday and gave a favorable as amended report to S.170 regarding Internet sales tax. The bill states that Internet retailers in South Carolina who have gross sales of $10,000 will have to comply with the South Carolina Sales and Use Tax. Rick Reames, Director the Department of Revenue, said during a hearing that the bill was limited in scope and would not reach all e-retailers.

The House and Senate will reconvene next Tuesday.

Top News Articles

Machinists’ union files petition for vote at North Charleston Boeing plant 

Production workers at Boeing Co.’s Dreamliner campus in North Charleston soon may decide whether they will be represented by the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, as organized labor makes one of its largest pushes into South Carolina despite the state’s long anti-union history. Read more.

AOL co-founder to invest $100,000 in Charleston startup in pitch competition 

AOL co-founder Steve Case will travel to Charleston on May 6 to choose one local startup for a $100,000 investment. Read more.

Gov. Nikki Haley says she’s willing to compromise on roads fix 

Republican Gov. Nikki Haley said again Monday she is willing to compromise on a plan to pay to repair the state’s crumbling roads. Read more.

Boeing’s S.C. plant delivers first 787-9 aircraft 

The first “Dash-9” Dreamliner built at Boeing Co.’s North Charleston campus was delivered Monday to United Airlines, marking the 250th delivery of the manufacturer’s Dreamliner program of twin-aisle commercial airplanes. Read more.

Bush calls for higher education reform during Greenville stop 

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, a potential Republican presidential candidate, said in Greenville Tuesday that federal student loan programs are financing a "dramatic expansion" of buildings and "prestigious programs for universities for them to feel good about what they're doing." Read more.

Clinton Taps SC Campaign Head 

Hillary Rodham Clinton has chosen a former aide to Rep. James Clyburn of South Carolina to lead her campaign in the South's first presidential primary. Read more.

College presidents urged to mobilize supporters to lobby for borrowing plan 

A Hopkins senator urged the presidents of Medical University of South Carolina and Winthrop University to mobilize their supporters if they hope to get a borrowing plan the House scrapped last week back on track. Read more.

State records largest number of people working in January 

South Carolina broke its record in January for the number of people working. The state’s workforce grew to 2.08 million, an increase of about 10,841 compared with December’s revised estimate. The state’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady at 6.6% in January, showing no change from the revised December estimate. Read more.

SC Gov. Haley opposes reopening Barnwell nuclear waste site to more states 

Gov. Nikki Haley said Thursday she opposes reopening the Barnwell County low-level nuclear waste dump because burying radioactive garbage from across the country isn’t the kind of legacy South Carolina wants to continue. Read more.

Advocates slam ‘weak’ House domestic violence bill that omits gun ban 

A state House panel advanced tougher penalties for domestic violence offenses on Thursday, but victim advocates slammed the measure as “weak” because it doesn’t adopt the Senate’s ban on convicted batterers possessing guns. Read more.

Haley opposed to Senate panel's road-funding plan 

Gov. Nikki Haley said Thursday she isn't interested in the one roads-funding plan that has thus far passed out of a legislative subcommittee. Read more.

Cruise opponents see dark lining in Sunshine’s arrival 

Charleston residents battling the cruise ship industry say Carnival Cruise Lines’ plans to have another cruise ship depart from here next year is proof that their fight is a necessary one. Read more.

Meetings and Events

Tuesday, March 24 

5:30      Reception honoring Senators Glenn Reese and Floyd Nicholson 
             Inn at USC, 1619 Pendleton Street

Wednesday, March 25

5:30      Reception honoring Representative Laurie Funderburk 
             First Citizens Cafe, 1210 Main Street

5:30      Reception honoring Senators John Matthews and Darrell Jackson 
             Inn at USC, 1619 Pendelton Street

Newly Introduced Legislation

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT/TAXATION: 

H. 3837 Loftis: TO ENACT THE "SOUTH CAROLINA NEW MARKET JOBS ACT" 

H. 3878 White: RELATING TO TAX RATES FOR INDIVIDUALS, ESTATES, AND TRUSTS, SO AS TO INCREASE THE SIZE OF THE TAX BRACKETS FOR EACH TAX RATE

EDUCATION

H. 3848 Huggins: SO AS TO ENACT THE "SOUTH CAROLINA FOUNDING PRINCIPLES ACT"

ENVIRONMENTAL

H. 3836 Loftis: RELATING TO DEFINITIONS PERTAINING TO MOTOR FUELS 

H. 3868 Pitts: SO AS TO ENACT THE "WETLANDS CONSERVATION ACT" 

H. 3874 Mitchell: SO AS TO PROVIDE FOR AN INCOME TAX CREDIT TO AN INDIVIDUAL OR BUSINESS THAT CONSTRUCTS, PURCHASES, OR LEASES RENEWABLE ENERGY PROPERTY

HEALTHCARE

H. 3851 G. M. Smith: RELATING TO REGULATION OF BIRTH CENTERS

JUDICIAL

H. 3862 Quinn: RELATING TO RETIRED JUDGES AND JUSTICES CONTINUING TO PRESIDE IN CERTAIN COURTS

TRANSPORTATION: 

S. 561 Groom: RELATING TO THE COMMISSION OF THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION