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Constituent Update #1 – 2014

 

The SC General Assembly returned to Columbia last week to complete the second of a two year session.  While it is not an election year for the Senate, it is for all members of the House of Representatives and constitutional officers.  This dynamic adds to the already challenging environment to address some very important issues in SC.  Namely tax policy, ethics reform, governmental restructuring, education, jobs, transportation infrastructure, and more.  Legislation not passed before we adjourn in June, will need to start the process all over in 2015.  We have a lot of work to accomplish but I’m optimistic we can advance many of these important issues.

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Government Restructuring
An attempt has been made over the last several years to restructure state government in order to make it more efficient and accountable.  2014 may finally be the year a level of restructuring is achieved.  Bills passed in each house of the General Assembly have now been agreed upon in a House and Senate conference committee.  That compromise bill will be in front of us this week for consideration.

Ethics Reform
The people of South Carolina deserve elected officials they can count on.  Unfortunately human behavior makes it next to impossible to completely prevent unethical activities. I continue to believe that the only way to ensure ethical conduct within government is to elect ethical people. However, I also believe that we must make every attempt to create an environment that demands ethical behavior and accountability. With that, I look forward to the debate on how best to improve our state’s ethics laws over the coming weeks.

Economic Development & Tax Reform
I have joined with several colleagues within the Senate who are committed to taking a deep and thorough look at our state’s economic policies to include tax policy and job creation activities.  Over the next few weeks, and likely into next session as well, we will coordinate the filing of several pieces of legislation that we believe will improve South Carolina’s economic standing and provide opportunity to our citizens.

Healthcare, Education, Roads & The Environment
There are many other pieces of legislation moving through the General Assembly. They include attempts to push back against Federal overreach of State authority, finding funding for our crumbling roadway infrastructure, and effective management of our natural resources.  Each are important and demand thoughtful analysis and debate and in many cases bold initiatives.  I’ll keep you up to date as these issues advance.

Community Meetings
I would be happy to speak at your home owners association, civic club, or other community group or organization that you believe would benefit. If I can help, simply contact Kirsten Artman in my Summerville office or submit a booking request from the menu on the right of this page.

As always, I thank you for your support and your friendship. It is a pleasure to serve as your Senator!

Filed in: Constituent Updates, Uncategorized

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