Happening at the Statehouse (May 3 – May 5)
The regular legislative session ends Thursday, May 12, meaning less than two weeks remain for most bills to reach the governor’s desk to be signed into law. Here’s a quick update on some major pieces of legislation (good and bad) in circulation at the Statehouse.
H.3948 – Raising local sales taxes
This bill would give counties that already passed a one percent sales tax two separate paths to impose an additional one percent sales tax. State law requires that a new sales tax would need to be approved via a local referendum.
The bill passed the House and is scheduled for the full Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday at 11:30am. Click here to view the livestream.
S.945 – Streaming school board meetings
This bill pushes school boards to livestream their meetings. Additionally, it would require that meetings be open and accessible to the public, and that video recordings of meetings be posted online within two business days. Read our extended analysis of the proposal here.
The bill passed the Senate and is scheduled for the full House Education and Public Works Committee Tuesday afternoon (exact time depends on House adjournment). Click here to view the livestream.
H.4082 – Requiring a license for hair designers
This bill would require hair designers to have a license to work in South Carolina. To obtain a license, a candidate would need to complete at least 1,200 hours of class time or be a registered “master hair care specialist”, pass a test and pay an unspecified fee.
The bill passed the House and is scheduled for the full Senate Labor, Commerce and Industry Committee on Wednesday at 9am. Click here to view the livestream.
S.290 – Eliminating Certificate of Need requirements
This bill would eliminate much of South Carolina’s Certificate of Need (CON) regime, which requires healthcare providers to go through an extensive regulatory process before constructing or expanding facilities or making certain purchases.
The bill passed the Senate and is scheduled for a committee hearing Tuesday afternoon (exact time depends on House adjournment). Click here to view the livestream.
S.1106 – Increasing revenue requirement for state rainy day fund(s)
This constitutional amendment would increase the percentage of revenue that must be set aside in the General Reserve Fund each year. The latest House version of the proposal would also raise the revenue requirement for the Capital Reserve Fund.
As this is a constitutional amendment, the proposal would need to be approved by voters at the election this November.
S.1106 passed the Senate and is now on the House floor.
S.935 – Creating an Education Scholarship Account program
This bill would let state education funds follow students beyond their normally designated schools. Under the proposal, that money could be used for private school tuition, textbooks, tutoring services, and even transportation to reach other public schools.
The House Ways and Means Committee passed an amended version of the bill. It now sits on the House floor calendar.