Creating the Department of Children’s Advocacy

UPDATE: The House passed this bill by a vote of 107 – 0 on 4/24/18 with one minor amendment. Upon the governor’s signature, this bill will become law.  If the goal of a particular piece of legislation is to streamline and improve government services, then creating an entirely new department would probably not be the best […]

S.1128 – ORS may request circuit court for release of V.C. Summer documents

This joint resolution would allow the executive director of the Office of Regulatory Staff (ORS) to file for a circuit court order requiring V.C. Summer documents and/or witnesses to be produced. It should also be noted that ORS already has authority to require – under oath – the production of documents and witnesses. While state […]

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S.1112 – Shortening session by one month

This bill would shorten the legislative session by around four weeks. Instead of ending on the second Thursday in May, it would end on the second Thursday in April. All other related deadlines would also be moved up a month. For instance, deadline for the budget’s passage in the House would be February 28 instead […]

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S.854 – Extends disability filing period for public employees

S.854 allows members of the South Carolina Retirement System (SCRS), the Police Officers Retirement System (PORS), and the General Assembly Retirement System (GARS) that become disabled due to a job related injury to apply for disability benefits up to one year after they retire (the application window under current law is 90 days). To qualify […]

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Phase Two: State Pension Reform? Not Quite

  Over the last several weeks, South Carolina’s pension system has drawn even more attention from lawmakers, prompting them to propose bills that would significantly change the state’s retirement landscape. Some bills would completely overhaul the system, while others would simply modify it. And with more public employees retiring each day, the proposals aren’t going […]

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Friday Follies: Selling Seashells by the Seashore, No More

Just in case it wasn’t abundantly clear, South Carolina lawmakers want to make sure citizens know that it is not illegal to pick up sea shells by the seashore – unless of course, you intend to sell them without a license. H.5110 would require a person who wants to sell “sea shells, shark or fish […]

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Spending Growth, Priorities in the 2018 House Budget

UPDATE: When the Senate’s version of the budget returned to the House, the latter readopted the original House budget with additional amendments. The total budget spending approved by the House is now $24.5 billion – a $4 billion decrease from the original House budget. This decrease comes from a reduction in the Other Funds revenue projection. […]

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Lawmakers Take Aim at Charter School System

It’s no secret that South Carolina’s education system is regarded as one of the worst in the country. In many cases, lawmakers have turned to increased spending and growing government programs to solve the state’s education crisis, but by and large, these solutions have failed to produce desired outcomes. However, one segment of schools in […]

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Friday Follies: Fines and Community Service for Saggy Pants

This past week, the legislature showed an unusually keen interest in how South Carolinians choose to wear their clothes. H.4957 would make it a civil offense for a person to expose their underwear or skin by wearing his pants more than three inches below his “ileum”. For those unfamiliar with obscure anatomical terms, the ileum […]

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S.41 – Mandating free school breakfast and lunch

This bill would mandate that lunch be provided to South Carolina public school students at no charge to the students. While schools do currently provide breakfast and lunch, the students and their families must pay unless they qualify for free or reduced-price meals. Moreover, only the breakfast program is mandatory for all schools, under current […]

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