House and Senate members met in session on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, with subcommittees and committees moving bills to the floor throughout the week.
Sunday Liquor Sales Moves Out of Committee
The House Judiciary Committee amended H4231 and gave it a favorable report, moving the bill to the floor of the House of Representatives for debate. H4231 allows municipalities to offer a referendum for Sunday retail liquor sales. The committee amended the bill to only allow liquor sales from 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. on Sundays and to eliminate the $3,000 annual license fee for single-store owners. The bill is on the House of Representatives’ uncontested calendar for debate next week.
For questions on this bill, contact Scott Slatton (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 803.933.1203.
Election Bills See Action in the House and Senate
Both House and Senate subcommittees heard testimony and took action on election bills on Thursday. The House Judiciary Constitutional Laws subcommittee took up seven bills related to elections and gave two a favorable report, moving them to the full committee. Subcommittee members approved H4589, a bill that deletes language that requires incumbents to hold over in office, pending a final determination of an election.
A Senate Judiciary subcommittee met right after the House subcommittee to take up H3734, the bill that requires municipal elections to take place in odd-numbered years only. The subcommittee amended the bill and gave it a favorable report, moving it to the full Judiciary Committee. The amendments eliminate all municipal election commissions for cities and towns with a population below 100,000 residents. Another adopted amendment requires any currently unresolved election be certified within 30 days of the effective date of the bill. An additional amendment allows cities and towns to set commencement dates for the terms of their elected officials no sooner than 48 hours after the election is certified, but no later than 75 days after certification.
For questions on the election bills, contact Scott Slatton (email@example.com) at 803.933.1203.
Stay in Touch
The Municipal Association legislative team is on Twitter. Follow Scott Slatton (@ScottMuniSC), Joannie Nickel (@JoannieMuniSC) and Erica Wright (@EricaMuniSC) for updates from the State House. Also follow the Association at @MuniAssnSC.
Don’t forget to listen to the From the Dome to Your Home podcast every Friday for a recap of the week’s legislative issues and a look to the week ahead at the State House.
Senate Finance Committee
H3951 – Enacts the Working Agricultural Lands Preservation Act – favorable report as amended by the subcommittee to remove deed stamp language from the bill.
Summary of the bill as introduced: Creates a committee that will identify and provide permanent protection to strategically-located working farmland properties.
Senate Medical Affairs subcommittee
S915 – Creates the Executive Office of Health and Policy – favorable report.
Summary of the bill as introduced: Creates the Executive Office of Health and Policy to include departments on public health, aging and intellectual disabilities.
House Judiciary Constitutional Laws subcommittee
H4590 – Extends the hours of operation of early voting centers – favorable report.
Summary of the bill as introduced: Extends the hours of operation of early voting centers until 7 p.m.
H4022 – Adds the instant runoff voting method of conducting municipal elections – adjourned debate.
Summary of the bill as introduced: Adds the instant runoff voting method of conducting municipal elections.
H4591 – Prohibits the use of ranked-choice voting or instant runoff ballots in elections – the subcommittee ran out of time before they could take action on this bill.
Summary of the bill as introduced: Prohibits the use of ranked-choice voting or instant runoff ballots in elections.