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Week In Review Thumbnail

Week In Review

Bills That Have Passed the Senate

S.152 – County Green Space Sales Tax: A bill to create the county green space sales tax and provide for the contents of the ballot that may be used. Revenues collected may be used to defray debt service on bonds issued to pay for preservation procurements. The sales and use tax authorized may be imposed by an enacting ordinance of a county’s governing body, provided approval by the county by referendum, provide procedure for the referendum and process for distributions, and other provisions.

S.224 – Prostitution: A bill to create increase penalties for solicitation of prostitution, establishing a brothel or inducing another to participate in prostitution, and establish the affirmative defense for a victim of human trafficking, and make other conforming changes.

S.264 – Disabled Self-Employment Development Trust Fund: A bill to establish the disabled self-employment development trust fund to provide assistance to individuals with disabilities to pursue entrepreneurship and self-employment opportunities by providing business development grants for the startup, expansion or acquisition of a business operated within the state. The Trust Fund is added to the list of funds to which a taxpayer may contribute on a state individual tax return.

H.3024 – Mobile Barbershops: A bill to authorize the State Board of Barber Examiners to issue mobile barbershop permits and establish requirements and regulation of mobile barbershops. An individual may operate a mobile barbershop, as defined, if he is licensed in the practice of barbering and does not have a physically stationary office at the location where the barbering services are provided. A mobile barbershop is prohibited from operating within eyesight of the nearest registered barbershop. An individual must apply to the board for a permit and submit an application and fee in the manner prescribed by regulation and undergo inspection of the mobile barbershop. The bill also requires notification for any change in official business address or phone number, requires the barbershop to comply with all local ordinances and requirements.

H.3308 – Safe Boating Distances: A bill to provide it is unlawful to operate a personal watercraft, specialty propcraft, or vessel while upon a narrow waterway in excess of idle speed within fifty feet of a moored or anchored vessel, wharf, dock, bulkhead, pier or person in the water; or upon all waters of the state within one hundred feet of a moored or anchored vessel, wharf, dock, bulkhead, pier or person in the water, or one hundred yards of the Atlantic Ocean coast line. This does not apply to a person who is on water skis or a floating device with the permission of the operator of the vessel or watercraft. The provisions do not apply to Lake Moultrie.

H.3444 – Election Commission Restructuring Act: A bill to make restructuring changes to the South Carolina Election Commission and provide a standardized process for conduct of elections. The bill permits the State Election Commission to provide a standardized process, polices or procedures for the conduct of elections in the state. Additionally, the bill provides that the President of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, on behalf of their respective bodies, have the unconditional right to intervene in a state court action that challenges the validity of an election law, policy, or the manner in which the election is conducted. The State Election Commission must notify the President and the Speaker within twenty-four hours of the receipt of service of a complaint that challenges election law or policy. Further, the Election Commission shall be appointed by the Governor upon Advice and Consent of the Senate. The terms of the members shall be four years until their successors are appointed and qualify. The Commission shall appoint an executive director, upon advice and consent of the Senate. In the event of a vacancy of the executive director, an interim director must be appointed by the commission and a formal appointment submitted to the Senate as soon as practical. If a person who is appointed is rejected, the person must not serve as an interim director. A member may not serve in holdover status for more than one year. IF a member who has been reappointed and is serving in holdover status is not confirmed by the Senate or before the sine die adjournment of the General Assembly following the expiration of the member’s term, then the member’s seat is vacated and is ineligible to serve on the Commission as a recess or interim appointee; If a person to be executive director is not confirmed by the Senate by the date for the sine die adjournment following the appointment, the person must not serve as an interim or permanent executive director.

H.3696 – Judicial Circuits: A bill to increase the number of circuit court judges by one in the ninth, fourteenth and fifteenth circuits and to add family court judges elected from each judicial circuit by one in the first and sixteenth circuits.

H.3786 – Constitutional Officers Salaries: A bill related to the annual salaries of state constitutional officers so that beginning with FY 2022-2023, with the exception of Governor and Lieutenant Governor, salaries of constitutional officers must be based on recommendations by the Agency Head Salary Commission to the General Assembly. The Agency Head Salary Commission shall authorize a study to be conducted every four years to recommend salary ranges for each officer based on their duties and responsibilities as well as the pay for officers of other states.

H.3865 – Abandoned Watercraft: A bill to permit a local government to adopt an ordinance requiring a permit for a watercraft or floating structure that remains moored, anchored or otherwise located in any five-mile radius on public waters for more than fourteen days. The cost of a permit requirement the local government may not exceed fifteen days, and make other provisions.

H.4006– Off-Premises Sales: A bill to extend the increase limit for certain off-premises sales from May 31, 2021 to May 31, 2022.

H.4017 – Conformity: A bill to update the reference of State Income Tax Laws to reference the Internal Revenue Code of the Year 2020 and provide for the tax treatment of the Paycheck Protection Program and certain expenses as provided for in the Federal Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021.

Bills Given Second Reading

S.432 – Contributions for Defense Costs: A bill to allow for contributions for defense costs for the same claim, suit or action among more than one liability insurer provided that contributions may not be sought from any liability insurer for defense costs incurred before the liability insurer receives notice of the action. A court shall allocated defense costs among insurers owing a duty to defend the insured in accordance with terms of the policy. A liability insurer entitled to contribution may file an action for contribution in a court of competent jurisdiction.

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.