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From the Dome to Your Home 

The S.C. General Assembly convened on Tuesday, January 9, for the start of the second year of a two-year legislative session. The House of Representatives welcomed new members from special elections and debated budget vetoes, while the Senate agreed to debate budget vetoes next week.

Local Government Fund update
The House Ways and Means Legislative, Executive and Local Government subcommittee met on Wednesday and heard testimony from the Municipal Association and the S.C. Association of Counties on the Local Government Fund. The subcommittee members are Bill Herbkersman (chairman, R – Beaufort, Jasper), Alan Clemmons (R - Horry) and Todd Rutherford (D – Richland).

Melissa Carter testified on behalf of cities and towns about the funding levels of the LGF. The House Ways and Means subcommittees will continue to meet and make recommendations to the full committee. For information on the Local Government Fund, contact Melissa (mcarter@masc.sc) at 803.933.1251.

Plastic bag ban bill back up for debate
The House of Representatives plans to debate H3529, the bill that bans local governments from passing ordinances that regulate plastic bags, on January 24. As written, this bill will ban municipalities from adopting ordinances regulating local use of plastic bags. Cities that adopt ordinances before the bill is passed would be allowed to continue enforcing them. Future ordinances on the subject, even arguably those amending pre-existing ordinances, would be banned. For questions on the bill, contact Tiger Wells (twells@masc.sc) at 803.933.1270.

Hometown Legislative Action Day 2018
Hometown Legislative Action Day is on Tuesday, February 6, 2018, at the Marriott in Columbia. Registration and hotel information are available now. The preregistration deadline is January 18.

2018 Advocacy Initiatives
The 2018 Advocacy Initiatives include encouraging business growth and development; providing quality services; increasing funding for law enforcement; expanding funding sources for infrastructure and reducing blight. Check out the December Uptown story on the initiatives and read the City Connect blog for more details on each advocacy initiative.

Weekly Bill Introductions
Access bills that were introduced this week and bills that received action from a subcommittee or committee through our legislative tracking system complete with short summaries. Visit the legislative tracking system to see and comment on all bills pending in the House and Senate.

Stay in Touch
The Municipal Association legislative team is on Twitter this session bringing you updates from the State House lobby and committee and subcommittee meetings. Follow Melissa Carter (@melissaMuniSC), Scott Slatton (@scottMuniSC) and Tiger Wells (@tigerMuniSC) on Twitter for updates. Also follow the Association at @MuniAssnSC.

Subscribe to City Connect blog, the blog of the Municipal Association connecting with the resources and tools local elected officials need to provide efficient and cost-effective services to residents and businesses.

Website Update
The Municipal Association website will be down for routine maintenance from 10 p.m. on Friday, January 12 until 2 p.m. Saturday, January 13, which means this report will not be accessible during those hours.

 More resources

Weekly legislative action