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Week In Review Thumbnail

Week In Review

Bills That Have Passed the Senate

S.16 – Personal Finance: A bill to require the completion of a certain basic personal finance coursework for high school graduation instead of existing economics coursework requirements and develop corresponding standards.

S.36 – Blue Catfish: A bill relating to the catch limits and length limits in Lake Marion, Lake Moultrie, the upper reach of Santee River, and the Congaree and Wateree Rivers. It is unlawful to take more than twenty-five blue catfish a day in Lake Marion, Lake Moultrie, and the upper reach of Santee River; and more than two blue catfish greater than thirty-two inches in length in one day.

S.147 – COVID-19 Liability Immunity Act: A bill to provide liability protections for a limited time period for healthcare providers and businesses that follow public health guidance in response to the COVID-19 public health emergency. The immunity from liability will not apply if a claimant proves by clear and convincing evidence that the covered entity or individual caused injury or damage by reckless, willful or intentional misconduct or by failing to make any attempt to adhere to public health guidance.

S.203 – Removal of School District Trustees: A bill to provide district trustees guilty of malfeasance, misfeasance, incompetency, absenteeism, conflicts of interest, misconduct, or persistent neglect of duty in office or incapacity shall be subject to removal by the Governor.

S.378 – Police Dogs and Horses: A bill to increase the penalties for injury or death caused to police dogs and horses. A person who willfully and maliciously taunts, torments, teases, beats, strikes or administers a chemical to a law enforcement dog or horse must be fined not less than five hundred dollars nor more than one thousand dollars or imprisoned not more than six months or both. A person who willfully or maliciously tortures, mutilates, injures, disables, poisons or kills a law enforcement dog or horse must be fined not less than two thousand dollars nor more than ten thousand dollars, imprisoned not more than ten years or both; must pay restitution to the agency to cover the full cost of the animal; and may be required to complete up to five hundred hours or community service with an animal-related organization or foundation.

S.421 – Extended Unemployment Security Benefits Lookback: A bill to reduce the lookback period, relating to extended unemployment security benefits when federally funded, from three years to two years when determining whether there is an ‘on’ indicator for the state.

S.427 – Renal Dialysis Facilities: A bill to provide that a renal drug manufacturer or its agent may deliver a legend dialystate drug or device to a patient of a renal dialysis facility if certain criteria are met: if the dialystate drugs or device are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration; the drugs or devices are lawfully held by a manufacturer that is properly registered; they are in the original sealed and labeled packaging from the facility; they are only delivered upon receipt of a physician’s order; and they are delivered directly to a patient with end-stage renal disease or his designee.

S.431 – Regional Tertiary Level Development Evaluation Centers: A bill to update the names of those authorized for activity related to the regional tertiary level development evaluation centers, to insert Prisma Health - University of South Carolina Medical Group, and Prisma Health - University Medical Group.

S.468 – Extended Benefit Periods: A joint resolution to provide that in a determination of whether the State is in an extended benefit period from Nov 1, 2020 - December 1, 2021, the stipulation that no extended benefit may begin before the fourteenth week following the end of a prior extended benefit period, shall not apply.

S.491 – Economic Development Bonds: A bill to issue up to $550,000,000 in economic development bonds to defray the cost of intermodal container transfer infrastructure, waterborne cargo infrastructure for the Port of Charleston. The State Fiscal Accountability Authority shall affect the bonds and provide a schedule reflecting the aggregate principal and interest of all obligation bonds, a schedule of the proposed bonds issued, and a schedule reflecting compliance with the limitation on maximum annual debt service, and additional provisions.

S.497 – Boating Safety and Educational Program: A bill to require to Department of National Resources to issue a boating safety certificate upon the competition of certain requirements, relating to the equipment and operation of watercraft to provide that it is unlawful for a person to operate certain watercraft on the waters of the State without having possession of a SC boating safety certificate, and other provisions.

This Week In Committee

Education Committee

S.38 – REACH Act: A bill to add to current law requirement that all high schools and institutions of higher learning give instruction in the essentials of the U.S. Constitution, Declaration of Independence, Federalist Papers for one year. The bill adds the instruction of the Emancipation Proclamation, removes the loyalty oath requirement and testing requirement, and adds that public high school students must successfully pass a course of instruction that includes the documents. Higher education is to give three semester credit hours in a course during the matriculation of undergraduate students and would apply to incoming freshman undergraduates entering 2021-2022 academic year. Additionally, the bill requires the Commission on Higher Education to ensure each public institution is in compliance with the provisions and report annually to the House Ways and Means, House Education, Senate Finance and Senate Education committees. 

S.376 – State Institution of Higher Education Efficiency Act: A bill to raise the currently exemption levels for PIP projects from one million to five million dollars for research universities and 2.5 million for all others.

Banking and Insurance Committee

S.105 – Magistrate Liens: A bill to delete the limit on liens that a magistrate can enforce. In place of the fixed amount of $100, the bill sets the cap to standard magistrate maximums in 22-3-10.

S.467 – Bank and Credit Union Modernization: A bill to reduce regulatory burden on banking and credit union. The bill streamlines the process of establishing a new bank, updates out-of-date terms, and removes barriers that prevent banks that are chartered in other states from moving to South Carolina.

H.3585 – Department of Insurance Procedures: A bill to clarify procedures for the Department of Insurance. The bill establishes procedures that an insurer must follow before it can terminate a line of coverage for the purpose of withdrawing from the market. At least one year in advance of a withdrawal, the insurer must notify the director of its reasons for the action and its plans for an orderly unwinding of business. Additionally, the bill permits the director to email orders relating to examination to insurers and establishes a deadline for bondsmen to furnish their financial reports, and other provisions.

H.3586 – Fraud Division: A bill to establish the Insurance Fraud Division at the Department of Insurance and transfer the primary responsibility for prosecuting fraud from the Attorney General’s Office to the new division. The Department will coordinate its efforts with SLED and the Attorney General, and establishes funding for the division.

H.3587 – Reduction In Coverage: A bill to make technical cleanups to the property insurers bill passed in a previous session.

The information provided in this review is not intended to represent Senator Bennett's approval or disapproval but rather a listing of the activity and outcomes within the South Carolina Senate. You may find Senator Bennett's voting record here.