Rule 5

Bills, Resolutions, and Reports

    5.1     No notice shall be required of a member of his intention to introduce a bill or resolution. Any member may introduce bills or resolutions which shall be received by the House staff whether or not the House is in session. Bills and resolutions so received shall be periodically referred by the Speaker of the House to the appropriate committee or committees which may then consider them at such times as the committee meets. Any matter acted upon favorably by any committee may be reported out by the committee when the House reconvenes and need not thereafter be sent to any committee but shall then be ready, upon compliance with other Rules of the House, for second reading consideration; provided, however, that bills appropriating revenue shall be referred to the Ways and Means Committee. Provided, further, that bills and resolutions creating study committees shall first be referred to the appropriate standing committee having jurisdiction of the subject matter of the bill or resolution. The Clerk of the House shall establish procedures to notify the House membership on a monthly basis of bills and resolutions introduced during periods when the Journal is not printed.
    All bills received prior to the first day of the convening or reconvening of the General Assembly shall receive first reading on the first day of the session.
    In those years in which all seats of the House are up for election, no bill shall be received for prefiling between the dates of adjournment sine die and the date of completion of the Organizational Session of the House.
    When the House of Representatives is not in session and bills are being prefiled and assigned to committees, any member who wishes to have their name added as a sponsor of a bill may do so by notifying the Clerk of the House in writing. The Clerk shall then notify the Chairman of the committee to which the bill has been assigned and their name shall be added. If a member wishes to sponsor a bill individually then they shall so indicate on the face of the bill and no additional sponsors shall be allowed.

    5.2     Every bill before presentation shall have its title endorsed; every report, its title at length; every petition, memorial, or other paper, its prayer or substance; and, in every instance, the name of the member presenting any paper shall be endorsed and the papers shall be presented by the member to the Speaker at the desk. A member may add his name to a bill or resolution or a co-sponsor of a bill or resolution may remove his name at any time prior to the bill or resolution receiving passage on second reading. The member or co-sponsor shall notify the Clerk of the House in writing of his desire to have his name added or removed from the bill or resolution. The Clerk of the House shall print the member's or co-sponsor's written notification in the House Journal. The removal or addition of a name does not apply to a bill or resolution sponsored by a committee.
    And every bill or joint resolution which shall propose the amendment or repeal of any Section, Chapter, or Title of the General Statutes or of any Act of Assembly or joint resolution, shall, in its title express the subject matter of such section, chapter, title, act, or joint resolution so sought to be amended or repealed. If this is not complied with, the paper shall not be received by the Speaker and objection may be raised by any member to such improper introduction at any time prior to third reading that the bill or resolution is being considered by the House.
    Every bill or joint resolution proposing to amend any section or clearly identifiable subdivision or portion of a section of any chapter of the General Statutes or of any Act of Assembly or joint resolution shall give the full text of the Section or clearly identifiable subdivision or portion of a Section as it would read with such amendment inserted therein. And if this latter clause of this rule is not complied with, the bill or joint resolution shall be amended so as to conform to this rule before it be considered by the House. Any member may require such amendment at any time a bill or resolution not in conformance herewith is being considered by the House.

    5.3     General Appropriations Bill and Supplemental Appropriations Bill

    A.         Certificate: Every General Appropriations Bill and Supplemental Appropriations Bill for the ordinary expenses of State Government before presentation shall have attached thereto a certificate from the Budget Division of the State Budget and Control Board stating that the total of the appropriations therein provided for is not in excess of the estimated total revenue of the State for such purposes, including that revenue which may be provided for in the bill, or in any other bill previously passed by the House for the fiscal year to which the bill is applicable, and an Appropriations Bill without such certificate shall not be read the first time in the House, but shall be returned to the Committee on Ways and Means by the Speaker. After passage on second reading and before its consideration on third reading, every General Appropriations Bill, and every Supplemental Appropriations Bill shall have attached thereto a certificate from the Budget Division of the State Budget and Control Board that the total of the appropriations therein provided is not in excess of the estimated total revenue of the State for such purposes, including that revenue which may be provided in the bill, or in any other bill previously passed by the House for the fiscal year to which the bill is applicable, and if the Budget Division cannot give such certificate, the Speaker shall order the bill recommitted to the Ways and Means Committee.

    B.     Germaneness and Amendments: The General Appropriations Bill and Supplemental Appropriations Bills may include both temporary and permanent provisions of law. The substantial effect of all temporary provisions of law and amendments thereto must be directly germane to the appropriation of funds, affecting revenue, or be rules, regulations, directives, or procedures relative to the appropriation of funds or affecting revenue for the fiscal year referred to in the bill. The substantial effect of all permanent provisions of law and amendments thereto must be directly related to and expressly germane to the purpose of an appropriation being made or revenue provided therein for the fiscal year referred to in the bill. An amendment which has the effect of appropriating funds in excess of five million dollars during the fiscal year stated within the bill shall include within the amendment the corresponding appropriation reduction(s) and/or revenue increase(s) within the same section that shall fully fund the amendment's proposed appropriation(s) or have attached to it in writing an explanation of the specific appropriation reduction(s) and/or revenue increase(s) from the different section(s) that shall fully fund the amendment's proposed appropriation(s). The provisions of this paragraph shall be narrowly and strictly construed with regard to all provisions of and amendments to the General Appropriations Bill and Supplemental Appropriations Bills.

    C.     Report of Conference of Committee: The following requirement applies to the report of the Conference Committee on the Annual Appropriations Bill: Any provision offered for inclusion in the Annual Appropriations Bill which increases or decreases the most recent official projection of general fund revenues of the Board of Economic Advisors may not be included in the bill or recommendation unless the revenue impact is certified by the Board of Economic Advisors. Changes to the official general fund revenue estimate as a result of such provisions may not exceed amounts certified by the Board of Economic Advisors. This requirement is in addition to other provisions of law regarding fiscal impact statements.

    D.         Format of Appropriations Bill: All State Appropriations Bills must be printed at the following stages in their passage so that:

        1.     The House Ways and Means Committee version of the Appropriations Bill must include the amounts recommended by the Ways and Means Committee.

        2.     The House version of the Appropriations Bill must include the amounts recommended by the Ways and Means Committee and the amounts passed by the House.

        3.     The Report of Conference or Free Conference Committee must include the amounts passed by the House, the amounts passed by the Senate, and the amounts agreed upon by the Conference Committee.

        4.     The Appropriations Act must include total funds approved for the next fiscal year and a listing of appropriations from the General Fund.

        5.     Provided, further, that:
            a.     the full salary of the principal officer of each department, agency, or institution shall be set forth as an item distinct and apart;
            b.     minor budget classifications or other descriptive terminology may be used when necessary to better express the purpose of the appropriation;
            c.     where the major portion of the operating funds to any department, institution, or principal operational division thereof is derived from Federal or other nonappropriated funds, the total appropriation for each major budget classification may be shown, and the relative contributions of State and nonappropriated funds therefor shall be shown as completely as possible; and
            d.     the appropriations must be in conformity with the program budget format as adopted by the Ways and Means Committee.

    E.     Any bill or resolution considered by the House of Representatives, upon second reading, that raises revenue must conform to the provisions of Article III, Section 15 of the South Carolina Constitution.

    F.     Earmark Projects and Programs: For purposes of this section:

        1.     "Appropriations bill" means the annual general appropriations bill, a supplemental appropriations bill, the joint resolution appropriating revenues of the capital reserve fund, a bill appropriating contingency reserve fund revenues, bond bills, or any other bill appropriating state revenues while under consideration by the House Ways and Means Committee or Senate Finance Committee or any subcommittee of it and any free conference committee on an appropriations bill. For purposes of this definition, a bill includes a joint resolution.

        2.     "Earmark project or program" means:
            a.     an appropriation for a specific program or project not originating with a written agency budget request or not included in an appropriations act from the prior fiscal year;
            b.     an appropriations bill proviso directing the expenditure of funds appropriated to an agency for a purpose not originating with a written agency budget request or not included in an appropriations act from the prior fiscal year.

        3.     Each request for an earmark project or program included in an appropriations bill must be memorialized in writing on a form designed by the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. The form must include the member's name who requested the earmark project or program, an explanation of the earmark project or program requested, and such other information as the form may require. The form must be filed with the House Ways and Means Committee.

        4.     Each request for an earmark project or program included in the House Ways and Means Committee version of an appropriations bill must be listed on a separate document prepared by the appropriate committee and placed on the members' desks before beginning debate of the appropriations bill on second reading. The document must include the members' name requesting the earmark project or program, a brief description of the earmark project or program request, and such other information as the form may require and must be posted on the General Assembly's web site.
        5.     An earmark project or program request made while an appropriations bill is in the Senate and is included in the report of a committee of conference must be listed on a separate document, similar to the form described in item 4., and placed on the members' desks before beginning debate of the report of the committee of conference. The chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee is charged with providing this form to the House membership.

        6.     An earmark project or program request made while an appropriations bill is in a committee of free conference must be listed on a separate document, similar to the form described in item 4., and placed on the members' desks before beginning debate of the report of the committee of free conference. The chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee is charged with providing this form to the House membership.

        7.     If the provisions of this subsection are not followed in reference to an individual earmark project or program, a two-thirds vote of the membership present and voting is required to include the earmark project or program in the appropriations bill or the report of the committee of conference or free conference.

    G.     The Annual General Appropriations Bill must be considered section-by-section on second reading, and when the pending question is the adoption of an individual section, the yeas and nays must be taken by roll call and the votes on it must be recorded by name in the Journal except when the House agrees to a section by unanimous consent.

    5.4     No bill or amendment providing an appropriation to pay a private claim against this State or a department thereof shall be introduced or considered.

    5.5     No bill or joint resolution shall be introduced as a delegation bill or resolution unless such bill or resolution relates only to local matters concerning the county which such delegation represents.

    5.6     Except as provided in subsection 5.1, the first reading of the bill shall be by title only. No amendments shall then be in order and the bill shall be referred to some committee, unless the House unanimously agrees, without debate, to dispense with reference.

    5.7     Upon the second reading of a bill, after all amendments and motions have been disposed of, the question shall be the passage of the bill. Upon a decision in the affirmative, the order shall be made accordingly and the bill shall take its place on the Calendar for third reading.

    5.8     At the third reading of a bill, the bill shall be read by its title only.
    If the bill originated in the House, the question then shall be the passage of the bill. On a bill which originated in the Senate, if no amendment has been made by the House, the question shall be the passage of the bill and in the case of an affirmative vote, the title "Bill" shall be changed to an "Act" and the act shall be enrolled for ratification.
    If the bill has been amended in the House, the question shall be the passage of the bill, as amended, and in the event of an affirmative vote, the bill, as amended, shall be returned to the Senate.

    5.9     All bills and resolutions reported by a committee shall, as a matter of course, be printed, together with the report of a committee. A bill or joint resolution shall be reprinted following its second reading, if amended by the House, reflecting the substance of the bill in its amended form. Every committee report which amends the provisions of legislation referred to such committee shall give the full text of the section or clearly identifiable subdivision or portion of a section as it would read with such amendment inserted therein. If this rule is not complied with, the committee report shall be amended so as to conform to this rule before the bill or joint resolution is considered by the House. This shall be the responsibility of the committee chairman.

    5.10     No local bill or joint resolution shall receive a second reading unless its number and title shall have been printed in the House Calendar at least one day prior to such reading. Provided, that no statewide bill or joint resolution shall receive a second reading unless its number and title shall have been printed in the House Calendar at least one statewide legislative day prior to such reading unless said bill or resolution has been set for Special Order consideration as provided for by Rule 6.3(14)(b). Provided, further, no General Appropriations Bill or Supplemental Appropriations Bill for the ordinary expenses of the State Government shall receive a second reading unless printed copies of such Appropriations Bill shall have been laid on the desks of members at least three legislative days prior to second reading.

    5.11     Any bill, resolution, report, or other paper which has been under consideration, may, at the Speaker's discretion, be ordered to be printed for distribution to the members.

    5.12     No statewide bill or joint resolution, except an appropriations bill, general, supplemental, deficiency, or a joint resolution approving or disapproving regulations of a state agency shall be considered unless (1) such legislation is introduced in the House prior to April fifteenth of the second year of a two-year legislative session or (2) such legislation shall have been introduced in the Senate and received by May first in the House, unless in either event it was introduced in the previous year and was carried over to the year in which it is to be considered; provided, however, that nothing herein shall prevent a statewide bill or joint resolution from being received, given first reading, and referred to the appropriate committee. No such bill or joint resolution shall be placed on the Calendar for further consideration unless two-thirds of those members present and voting agree to waive the rule. Once voted on and rejected, no further vote shall be allowed to waive this rule.
    The motion to waive this rule shall not be debatable, except that the mover shall have the right to make a three-minute explanation of his motion.
    The provisions of this rule shall apply only to regular sessions of the General Assembly as opposed to special sessions of the General Assembly.
    The Speaker shall enforce the deadlines provided by this rule and shall not allow consideration without putting the question of waiver before the House.

    5.13     Each bill effecting the expenditures of money by the State shall, prior to receiving second reading, have attached to it in writing such comment of the appropriate state official or office as may appear appropriate regarding the bill's effect on the finances of the State. Each committee amendment that substantially changes a bill effecting expenditures of money by the State, prior to the bill receiving second reading, shall have attached to the committee amendment such comment of the appropriate state official or office as may appear appropriate regarding the committee amendment's effect on the finances of the State. Provided, however, this rule shall not be invoked where the amount is shown in the bill.
    Committee chairmen shall satisfy these requirements of a fiscal impact statement prior to the bill receiving second reading.

    5.14     No report of a Committee on Conference or Free Conference, except on a Sine Die Resolution, the General Appropriations Bill, the Supplemental Appropriations Bill, the Capital Reserve Fund, or local matters, shall be considered until such report has been printed in the House Journal and explained by the conferees on the floor of the House.

    5.15     The printing of any document required to be printed under the Rules of the House may specifically be dispensed with by two-thirds vote of the membership present and voting of the House, a quorum being present; provided, such vote shall be by division vote; provided, however, the printing of any bill which has not been referred to committee shall not be waived.

    5.16     Should any member seek immediate consideration of any House or Concurrent Resolution, the resolution shall receive immediate consideration unless five members object. If immediate consideration of such resolution is not sought, or in the event five members do object where immediate consideration is sought, the resolution shall be referred to an appropriate committee and shall not be considered by the House until after the committee has made its report and at that time shall take its place on the Calendar. Provided, however, a House or Concurrent Resolution concerning Sine Die Adjournment under Article III, Section 21 of the South Carolina Constitution and Section 2-1-180 of the Code of Laws of South Carolina, 1976, shall receive immediate consideration, which shall include the motion to commit or recommit.
    A House or Concurrent Resolution sponsored by a committee shall receive immediate consideration if so requested by a member unless five members object, in which case it shall take its place on the Calendar without the necessity of being referred to a committee. Such resolution shall be printed in the same manner as is prescribed in Rule 5.9 for the printing of bills.
    Provided, however, the Clerk shall prepare forms for House Resolutions expressing the sympathy or congratulations of the members of the House. Any member wishing to sponsor such a resolution shall forward in writing on a form prepared by the Clerk information sufficient to prepare the resolution. The Speaker shall sign the resolution on behalf of the membership. Such resolutions shall not be read to the House or printed in the Journal except upon the request of ten members. The Speaker may refer any such resolution to the Committee on Invitations and Memorial Resolutions and, in such event, the resolutions must be approved by the committee or if the committee recommends, by the House.

    5.17     (A)     Upon the consideration of any statewide uncontested bill or joint resolution, an objection or request for debate by five (5) members at any time prevents the consideration of the statewide bill or resolution and it then must be placed upon the statewide contested Calendar and remain on it until one (1) or more objections or requests for debate are formally withdrawn from the floor, and if there are not further objections or requests for debate entered at that time so that the total number of outstanding cumulative objections or requests for debate is less than five (5) or more, the statewide bill or resolution shall then receive immediate consideration if there is any time remaining in the applicable period for that statewide day for that bill or resolution.

    (B)     Upon the consideration of any local uncontested bill or joint resolution, an objection or request for debate by three (3) members at any time prevents the consideration of the local bill or resolution and it then must be placed upon the local contested Calendar and remain on it until one (1) or more objections or requests for debate are formally withdrawn from the floor, and if there are not further objections or requests for debate entered at that time so that the total number of outstanding objections or requests for debate is less than three (3), the local bill or resolution shall then receive immediate consideration if there is any time remaining in the applicable period for that day for that local bill or resolution.

    5.18     If any bill or resolution shall be recommitted to a committee or referred to another committee retaining its place on the Calendar, the same may be listed on the Calendar by number only until it is returned to the floor for debate or such action as may be appropriate.
    Any bill, resolution, or report upon which debate has been adjourned may be listed on the Calendar by number only until the date for consideration has been reached.

    5.19     a.     No member shall speak more than twice on the main question of a bill or resolution being considered for any reading and not longer than sixty minutes for the first speech nor longer than thirty minutes for the second speech, unless allowed to do so by the affirmative vote of a majority of the members present and voting. No member shall speak more than twice upon an amendment or a motion to reconsider that is debatable and then not longer than ten minutes each time. However, if the previous question has been invoked, no member may speak more than twice on a motion to reconsider that is debatable and then not longer than the amount of time remaining for debate of the underlying motion; provided, that proposed amendments announced and introduced by the Reading Clerk shall be considered prior to a member speaking on the bill. No member shall speak more than twice on Senate amendments to a House bill and not longer than sixty minutes for the first speech nor longer than thirty minutes for the second speech, unless allowed to do so by the affirmative vote of a majority of the members present and voting. The House may, however, by consent of a majority of the members present and voting suspend the operation of this rule during any debate on any particular question before the House.
    b.     Subsection (a) of this rule shall be applicable on a section-by-section basis on debate upon the General Appropriations Bill, the Supplemental Appropriations Bill, or the bond bills but shall not apply to bills on reapportionment.
    c.     The question of granting Free Conference Powers shall require an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the membership of the House and is not debatable. No member shall speak more than twice on the question of adoption of a Conference or Free Conference Report and not longer than sixty minutes for the first speech nor longer than thirty minutes for the second speech, unless allowed to do so by the affirmative vote of a majority of the members present and voting. When the pending question is adoption of a Conference or Free Conference Report, the yeas and nays must be taken by roll call and the votes on it must be recorded by name in the Journal. Furthermore, the question of adoption of a Conference or Free Conference Report is subject to the provisions of Rule 8.6.

    5.20     Notwithstanding the provisions of any other House Rule, no House or Concurrent Resolution memorializing the Congress of the United States, the President of the United States, or any state or federal department, agency, or official shall receive immediate consideration but shall be referred to the Committee on Invitations and Memorial Resolutions and shall remain in such committee unless three members of the committee vote to report the resolution out of committee. No such resolution may be recalled from committee.

Last Updated: 11/17/10 5:24 PM



Legislative Services Agency
h t t p : / / w w w . s c s t a t e h o u s e . g o v