Diverting gas tax dollars to pay local officials?

On Tuesday, the South Carolina Senate passed a bill that would pay certain transportation officials (appointed by lawmakers) using their county’s local share of gas tax revenue.

S.447 would pay each member of the Lee County Transportation Committee (CTC) $100 for each meeting attended, for up to fifteen meetings. This bill would also make the legislative delegation chairman an ex-officio, non-voting member of the CTC, although it does not prohibit that lawmaker from receiving payments for attending meetings.

A similar House bill (H.3277) would pay each member of the Union County Transportation Committee $75 for each meeting attended, for up to ten meetings. 

Both bills would pay members from “C” fund revenues – which comprise the counties’ share of gas tax revenue, used to fund local road improvement projects. This comes at a time as road repairs across the state are running behind schedule.

Lawmakers filed similar bills last year to pay transportation officials in Union, Lee and Kershaw counties.

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