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The Past Week in the Senate: April 23 - 27, 2018

As always, please let me know if there is anything I can do to help, and thank you for allowing me to serve you in Columbia.

Sent to the House for consideration...

Permits for Alcohol

A bill to extend the ability to obtain permits to purchase and sell beer and wine for on-premises consumption and a biennial license to purchase alcoholic liquors by the drink to include at a soccer complex.

Abandoned Building Revitalization Act

A bill to extend the provisions of the South Carolina Abandoned Buildings Revitalization Act until December 31, 2025.

Returned to the House with amendment...

Dyslexia Screening

A bill to require the DOE to establish and provide training and support for a statewide multi-tiered support system (MTSS) framework with three tiers of interventions. The MTSS framework will consist of a data based system to match instructional resources to educational needs, an ongoing system of student assessment, and a layered continuum of support. The department would develop a universal screening process to screen for identifying students who may be at risk for problems in reading, math, writing and social/emotional development. The screening would be used by local school districts through their existing response to intervention framework. Beginning the 2019/2020 school year, school districts are to use the universal screening process to screen each child from kindergarten to second grade at least three times a year.

Turkey Seasons and Limits

A bill to extend the period in which wild turkey seasons and bag limits for certain counties are suspended, until July 1, 2019.

Second Reading...


A joint resolution to direct the DHEC to focus the resources of the Department’s dams and reservoirs safety program on regulating the state’s high and significant hazard dams.

Special Alcohol Permits

A bill to allow the DOR to issue permits to sell beer and wine at multiple locations on multiple days at a festival via one application.

Beneficiary Designations

A bill revoking certain beneficiary designations by divorce, annulment or an order termination marital property rights under employee benefit plans administered by PEBA.

Mandatory Reporters

A bill to add clerical and non-clerical religious counselors who are charging for services as mandated reporters.

Workers’ Compensation Commission Hearings

A bill to provide that hearings must be held in the Workers’ Compensation Commission district, rather than the city or county, in which an injury has occurred, so long as the location is no greater than seventy-five miles from the county seat of the county in which the injury occurred.

Enrolled for ratification...

American Indian Groups

A bill that discontinues the practice of recognizing native American Indian Groups which are distinct from recognized tribes, in this state. Groups that have already received recognition retain their status.

Health Information

A bill to allow for the disclosure of personal health information about a child to certain caregivers as part of child protection and adoption proceedings. It further adds immunity from liability protections under the mandatory reporter sections. DSS would be authorized to release certain health information of a child to certain caregivers.

Beachfront Management Reform Act

A bill that would repeal final seaward movement of the baseline previously set by statute. It provides a new framework for new lines to be based upon the best available data. It establishes a cycle for baselines and setbacks, provides locations of new lines must be on department’s website, it must be noticed by publication in statewide and local newspapers and at least one hearing in county or municipality of geographic area. It provides for a review process for affected landowner.


A bill to revise provisions governing the issuance of shellfish importation permits by the SCDNR in order to eliminate references to genetically modified shellfish.

Made Special Order...

Dismemberment Abortion

A bill to enact the “South Carolina Unborn Child Protection from Dismemberment Abortion Act”. This Act will prohibit dismemberment abortions, with exceptions, and provide injunctive relief and civil remedies to enforce the provisions of the Act.

Conference Appointed...

Senator Massey, Rankin, Setzler/Representative McCoy, Finlay, Rutherford

Public Service Commission

A resolution that prohibits the PSC from holding a hearing on the merits for requests made per the base load review act before November 1, 2018. It also requires that the PSC issue a final order for a docket in which a request was made per the base load review act by December 21, 2018. The Public Service Commission shall order investor-owned utilities to provide to the ORS and PSC an accounting of their estimated tax savings from January-December 2018 resulting from the Federal Tax Cuts Act as expeditiously as possible. The PSC shall issue an order within fifteen days after the receipt of this information to provide that customers receive these estimated tax savings. On March 1, 2019, all affected investor-owned utilities must submit to the ORS and the PSC the actual tax savings, as well as any related tax benefits received.

General Committee Favorable Report:

Commission for the Blind

A bill to require that three members of the Commission meet the legal definition of Blindness. To further provide for the use of counselors to assist teachers of students with certain visual impairments.

Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee Favorable Reports:

South Carolina Solar Habitat Act

A bill to establish a voluntary solar best management practices for commercial solar energy generation sites that provide native perennial vegetation and foraging habitats beneficial to game birds, songbirds, and pollinators and reduce stormwater runoff and erosion at the solar generation site. The bill provides that certificates of compliance may be issued to those that meet the guidelines.

Home-Based Food Production

A bill that implements recommendations arising from the Legislative Oversight Committee’s study of the Department of Agriculture. It eliminates outdated references to the department’s role in regulating home-based food production operations which are now supervised by the DHEC.

Identification Tags

A bill revising requirements for the identification tags placed on cotton bales stored in a warehouse operated under the state warehouse system. The bill provides that the system may utilize the permanent bale identification number and tag of another gin if the tag meets the requirements. However, if the PBI tag does not meet the requirements, a sticker mayxbe affixed to the PBI tag or bale of cotton adjacent to the PBI tag that meets these requirements.

Judiciary Committee Favorable Reports:

Human Trafficking

A bill to revise the criminal definitions and provide more stringent penalties that apply when a victim is under the age of eighteen.

Real Property Maintenance

A bill to authorize counties to establish standards for residential or commercial property upkeep and any notification processes to alert property owners to conditions needing correction.


A bill to restructure the criminal penalties for littering increasing their severity with the amount of litter waste involved.

Law Enforcement Officer Misconduct

A bill to revise the process for addressing misconduct allegations. The bill authorizes the LETC to appoint attorneys from the criminal justice academy to sit as hearing officers for contested case hearings. No officer who has a pending allegation of misconduct may be employed as a law enforcement officer or as a telecommunications operator or perform any law enforcement duties until a decision has been made that authorizes employment.

As always, thank you for the privilege of serving you in Columbia. If I can ever be of assistance to you, or if you have ideas on the issues you want me to share with the rest of the General Assembly, please don't hesitate to contact me at 843-385-4302.

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