Weekly Update from the SC State House - May 2014: The House joined the Senate for a Joint Assembly on Wednesday to elect a number of judges...

by Nexsen Pruet, PLLC

Details from Each Chamber


The House worked through the Calendar this week, joining the Senate for a Joint Assembly on Wednesday to elect a number of judges. Tuesday, the House cleared some of their uncontested calendar before adjourning debate on several bills.

On Wednesday, the House worked before and after the Joint Assembly at noon. They adjourned debate on the budget, CRF and a number of other bills.

The House worked quickly through the Calendar Thursday, in preparation for the last week of regular session. Prior to adjourning, Chairman White gave a brief update on the budget, saying both versions were very similar and they were working to amend them to avoid a conference committee. The sticking points have been K-4, local governments funds, school buses, C-Funds and new funds.

The House will reconvene Tuesday at noon

A number of bills of interest passed the House this week:

  • S. 812 Rural Infrastructure Authority
  • S. 294 Local accommodation tax revenues
  • S. 1033 Out of State businesses/Emergency or Disaster
  • S. 495 Charitable organizations
  • S. 437 Property tax (returned to Senate with amendments)
  • S. 825 Ad Valorem Taxation (returned to Senate with amendments)
  • S. 965 Property Tax Millage (returned to Senate with amendments)
  • S. 985 Fairness in Lodging Act (returned to Senate with amendments)
  • S. 1008 SC Retirement System (returned to Senate with amendments)
  • H. 4520 Uncle Preston's Law (sent to Senate)
  • H. 3075 State Grand Jury (sent to Senate)
  • S. 1085 Transportation Infrastructure


The Senate worked swiftly through the Calendar this week giving numerous bills readings. On Tuesday, the Senate received several Statewide Appointments from the Governor. The Senate non-concurred with House amendments to H. 3945, Ethics Reform. The Transportation Committee reported favorably on the appointment of David Posek for the SC State Ports Authority.

Wednesday, the Senate met with the House in a Joint Assembly to elect a number of judges. Below are the results of the Joint Assembly and other confirmations:

  • Court of Appeals, Seat 7: Honorable Stephanie P. McDonald
  • Circuit Court, 10th Judicial Circuit, Seat 2: Honorable R. Scott Sprouse
  • Circuit Court, 16th Judicial Circuit, Seat 2: Honorable Daniel Dewitt Hall
  • Family Court, 11th Judicial Circuit, Seat 1: Honorable William G. Seigler
  • Board of Trustees for the Winthrop University, At Large, Seat 10: Honorable GlenA. McCall
  • Public Service Commission, Second District, Seat 2: Honorable Elliot F. Elam, Jr.
  • Public Service Commission, Fourth District: Honorable Elizabeth Fleming
  • Public Service Commission, Sixth District, Seat 6: Honorable Nikiya Hall
  • Legislative Audit Council: Honorable Phillip F. Laughridge, Honorable Jane P. Miller and Honorable Charles L.A. Terreni
  • Consumer Affairs Commission: Honorable Donald H. Jackson

The Senate convened on Thursday and worked steadily on the Calendar and bills received from the House. A significant amount of time was spent discussing the need for changes in DSS and DSS leadership. Following procedural debate, S. 1356, a Senate resolution declaring the Senate has no confidence in Lillian Koller's leadership of DSS, and that during her tenure in office the Department has failed in its mission, was placed on the Calendar without reference. S. 5282, the Sine Die Resolution was adopted and returned to the House with concurrence.

The Senate will reconvene Tuesday June 3rd at noon.

A number of bills of interest passed the Senate this week:

  • S. 718 Penalty for passing or overtaking a school bus
  • H. 5014 Commercial drivers license (amended)
  • H. 4603 DHEC approve erosion control devices (amended)
  • H. 4550 Long term healthcare administrators (amended)
  • S. 1251 Employee Pension plans
  • H. 3102 Jaidon's Law - DSS Placement (amended)
  • H. 4399 Allow alcohol permit in proximity of churches (amended)
  • H. 4673 Limitation on liability of landowners with airstrips (amended)
  • H. 4732 Party conventions and party primary elections
  • H. 4997 Automobile Dealer License (amended)  

Top News Articles of the Week     

S.C. Insurance Director: 'Obamacare' policies will cost more next year
The S.C. Department of Insurance director predicts the same four companies that sold health insurance plans to South Carolina residents on the federal exchange during the Affordable Care Act's first enrollment window will offer those plans again later this year.  Read more.

Beer bill garners nearly unanimous support
A pending beer bill that would make South Carolina more attractive to out of state breweries gained almost unanimous support from legislators on Wednesday, as the House of Representatives and the Senate approved the bill through roll-call votes of 96-0 and 43-1, respectively. Read more.

Upstate Senator Blocks SC Sex Ed Bill
A bill aimed to improve sex education in the Palmetto State is dead after an Upstate Senator blocked it from advancing.  Read more.

SC senators seek annual caseload stats from child-welfare agency
The S.C. Senate wants the state's child-welfare agency to report directly to lawmakers statistics showing how many cases each of its workers have and the number of children in the system. Read more.

House revives Charleston research university
The South Carolina House resurrected an attempt to create a research university in Charleston after two senate leaders tried to defeat it. Read more.

Haley to announce 304 jobs in 5 rural SC counties
Gov. Nikki Haley says seven businesses are bringing a combined 300 jobs to five rural South Carolina counties. Read more.

National solar companies skeptical of SC
West Coast solar energy companies remain critical about a plan that is projected to expand sun power in South Carolina after years of reticence from utilities toward renewable energy in the Palmetto State. Read more.

South Carolina's Ban on Election Day Liquor Sales May Go the Way of Prohibition
Tony Suh, the owner of Harvard's Wine and Beverage here, does not know why South Carolina's government will not let him sell liquor on statewide election days. Read more.

Medicaid enrollment grows in South Carolina, despite 'non-expansion' stance
Joyce Brown can't get a Medicaid card in South Carolina and, like many applicants recently denied coverage here, she may have qualified for the government's low-income health insurance program if conservative leaders had changed their minds about Obamacare or if the federal law was written differently. Read more.

Charleston, Columbia see rise in construction jobs, Greenville flat
Construction employment expanded in the Charleston and Columbia metro areas, but remained flat in Greenville between April 2013 and April 2014, according to an analysis of federal employment data released by the Associated General Contractors of AmericaRead more.

State senators to consider solar power compromise
It would be easier for South Carolinians to install solar panels on their property under legislation that's up for debate in the state Senate this week.  Read more.

Rep. Tom Rice takes role in passage of law to help SC ports
South Carolina's 7th District Congressman Tom Rice is celebrating his first major success on Capitol Hill. Read more.

Medicaid enrollment grows in South Carolina, despite 'non-expansion' stance
Joyce Brown can't get a Medicaid card in South Carolina and, like many applicants recently denied coverage here, she may have qualified for the government's low-income health insurance program if conservative leaders had changed their minds about Obamacare or if the federal law was written differently.

A lot on line for College of Charleston as Legislature winds down
At the end of this year's legislative session, the College of Charleston could house the state's fourth comprehensive research university, have additional classroom space and still be dealing with the fallout around last summer's freshmen book choice. Read more.

Boeing's footprint continues to grow in Lowcountry
Boeing's startling decision in 2009 to build its newest jetliner in South Carolina was skewered by some as a huge miscalculation, especially among the rank-and-file in Washington state, home of the company's commercial aircraft division.  Read more.



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Nexsen Pruet, PLLC

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