April 9, 1996
Vol. 13, No. 13
South Carolina House of Representatives
David H. Wilkins, Speaker of the House
OFFICE OF RESEARCH
Room 309, Blatt Building, P.O. Box 11867, Columbia, S.C.
29211, (803) 734-3230
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WEEK IN REVIEW
concurrence in Senate amendments, to be ratified
S. 421 provides that a referendum to
create a community recreation special tax district may be held during
either a general election or a special election set by county council. The
area to be annexed must be contiguous, and a petition signed by at least
fifteen per cent of qualified voters in the area must be submitted first.
Another provision authorizes districts to pledge collateral for projects,
and to borrow money by means other than bonds. H.
3106 provides that upon licensing, approval, or
registration, a child day care facility must provide
proof of conforming or
approved non-conforming with local zoning ordinances. Conditions may be
imposed on the facility consistent with local restrictions. H. 3552 provides immunity from liability to roller
skating rinks due to the inherent risk of the sport. The Senate amendment
extends immunity to ice skating rinks as well. H.
3848 requires that mortgage forms include the
name and address of the mortgagor and of the mortgagee, as well as the
book, page, and date of recording of the original mortgage. The Senate
amendment provides that a toll free telephone number for the assignee may
be provided if such a number is available. H. 3897 repeals laws requiring a gigging license in
Game Zone 11. H.
authorized the Citadel to increase the principal on outstanding bonds for
housing and auxiliary facilities from $25 to $35 million dollars. The
Senate amended the bill to include the "Higher Education Revenue Bond
Act" which would establish provisions affecting borrowing by all
higher education institutions, not just the Citadel.
H. 4544 provides that an photo copy of an original
record by certain insurance entities must be considered an original record
for all purposes, even legal. The Senate amendment includes the South
Carolina Property and Casualty Insurance Guaranty Association and the South
Carolina Health Insurance Pool in the list of insurance entities.
received third reading, to be ratified
S. 1041, known as the "Worker
Reference Bill," grants employers immunity when
references for former employees. An absolute immunity would be granted for
providing such objective information as hiring date and salary. Qualified
immunity would be granted for providing such subjective information as work
ethic and habits. Litigation could occur only in cases of knowingly false
or reckless disclosure. S. 1072
authorizes that no property tax would have to be paid by nonprofit housing
corporations which provide rental or cooperative housing for elderly,
handicapped, or low to moderate income families. This measure affects
fifteen facilities in the state, and shifts about $14,000 of local property
taxes to other taxpayers.
received third reading, amended, returned to Senate for concurrence
S. 614 extends the laws which affect
gathering oysters to include clams as well. The bill
provides that one-half
bushel of clams may be gathered in one day. In addition, the measure
revises requirements for critical areas designated as public shellfish
grounds. The House amendment removes the requirement that the county
legislative delegation designate approved public shellfish areas. It also
prohibits the Department of Natural Resources from designating an area
within 1,000 feet of a developable highland property as a public shellfish
ground. S. 846 provides for the issuance
of state Olympic license tags. An estimated $23,000 per thousand tags would
be raised from the sale of these tags. That revenue would be distributed
equally between the United States Olympic Committee and the South Carolina
Special Olympics. The Senate had proposed that the South Carolina Amateur
Sports Program receive half of the proceeds rather than the South Carolina
Special Olympics. S.
"Omnibus Insurance Fraud and Reporting Act." Requested by the
Insurance Fraud Division of the Attorney General's Office, the bill
requires that all state agencies report any knowledge or suspicion of
insurance fraud. The measure also establishes immunity from liability for
such reports, and provides immunity to designated insurance employees, who
while investigating fraud, share information with the National Insurance
Crime Bureau, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, or other
designated fraud investigators. S. 1101
provides that members of voter registration boards, and election and
registration commissions must complete training and be certified by the
State Election Commission within eighteen months after election. The bill
also changes appointment procedures for poll managers and clerks.
received third reading, sent to the Senate
H. 3182 requires
counseling and written
consent from next-of-kin before body parts may be removed to be used for
organ or tissue donation. Otherwise body parts could be removed only to
determine cause of death. H. 3671
provides that sales tax must be paid by a resident of another state when
buying a boat and motor in this state. H. 4445 provides that contested cases under the
Administrative Procedures Act shall be governed by procedural rules of the
Administrative Law Judge Division. The standard of proof shall be the
preponderance of evidence, except in professional licensing cases where the
standard of proof shall be clear and convincing evidence. Among other
provisions included in the measure is one which states that all cases shall
be assigned by the Chief Judge, rather than only the
H. 4518 provides for a referendum
amending the State Constitution to allow investment in stocks. Currently
state and local governments may invest only in fixed
such as bonds and savings accounts. (Investment in the stock market was
banned after severe losses during the last century.)
While the State
Retirement Fund and the State Police Officers Retirement System are
currently solvent, both the State Treasurer and an independent actuarial
report indicate that increasing membership will strain future pension
expenditures. This joint resolution allows voters to
state and local governments should broaden their portfolios to include
stocks, which are traditionally more volatile and produce greater returns.
H. 4537 prohibits daycare centers from
knowingly hiring a person who has been convicted of a violent or sex crime,
as well as certain other offenses. Such an applicant
would be guilty of a
misdemeanor and subject to a fine of up to five thousand dollars ($5,000),
a sentence of not more than one year, or both. The bill also requires that
applicants be fingerprinted to determine any criminal history. This
provision includes anyone fifteen years old or older who lives in a family
daycare setting. However, a grandfather clause excludes anyone who has been
working continuously in a daycare since July 1, 1991 from having to be
fingerprinted. This bill is similar to S. 1286 which is in the House
H. 4569 permits state employees paying
the full actuarial costs to buy up to two years of service credits when
returning within five years from maternity leave. It
requirement that the employee return to work within two years. H. 4614 enacts the Children's Code Reform Act of
1996. Its purpose is to refine and hasten the Foster Care process. The
proposed legislation requires that a hearing to assure probable cause for
removal from the home be held within seventy-two hours after a child is
taken into custody, rather than the current ten days. That hearing could be
conducted by videoconference or a telephone conference call if necessary.
The measure tightens standards for removal from the home by requiring that
the child be in "substantial" danger. It authorizes a caseworker
to determine whether a child should be taken into custody rather than a law
enforcement officer, and provides immunity for that decision as long as it
is made in good faith. The bill delays taking the child into actual custody
for twenty-four hours so that a preliminary investigation may be made by
the Department of Social Services (DSS). A final report must be made within
thirty days if the child is placed in DSS custody, or forty-five days when
remaining in the home. Currently this report is required within sixty days.
The measure requires a hearing to determine permanent placement after a
child has been in foster care for a year. It also authorizes DSS to create
a temporary crisis placement facility where parents may voluntarily place
their children for up to seventy-two hours during a family crisis.
H. 4737 reauthorizes Educational
Television (ETV), and revises qualifications for serving on the ETV
Commission. The measure also establishes the Information Technology
Advisory Council, and requires that Budget and Control Board approve
requested information technology equipment. ETV would be required to
implement a marketing plan, increase revenue generated at its regional
stations, and open its daycare facilities to the public. In addition, the
effectiveness of instructional television would be evaluated.
concurrent resolution adopted
S. 1185 memorializes Congress to amend
the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and the Public Health Service Act
to facilitate development and approval of new drugs,
and medical devices. This concurrent resolution has passed both chambers
now. H. 4792 sets Sunday, April 28,
1996 aside to honor South Carolinians who died because of workplace
injuries or illnesses. The measure has been sent to the Senate for
received second reading
H. 4323 raises the maximum speed limit
on interstate highways to seventy miles per hour, and sixty miles per hour
on multilane divided highways. State highway engineers would be permitted
to set speed limits higher than fifty-five miles per hour on some state
highways. It provides for a forty-five mile per hour
speed limit on unpaved
roads, and a thirty mile per hour limit in an urban district. The proposed
legislation also requires that vehicles pulling trailers travel ten miles
per hour slower than the posted speed limit.
H. 3589 directed the Department of
Public Safety to study whether legally elevated motor vehicles are a safety
hazard. The joint resolution required the Department
report back to the
General Assembly by January 1, 1996. Governor David Beasley vetoed the
measure, citing the passage of that date, and representatives upheld the
H. 4608 authorized a joint agency to
contract with another joint agency in order to collect, transfer, and/or
dispose of solid waste. The bill also provided that governing bodies
contract with joint agencies for these services. It was tabled since the
Senate version of the bill, S. 1140,
has passed both chambers and is enrolled for ratification.
placed on the contested calendar
The following bills have been placed on the contested calendar for second
reading. S. 517 affects benefits for state
employees who have a break in service. Currently their annual leave is
calculated on the number of years service, but limited to ten years. The
measure deletes the ten year cap when the break in service is less than
five years. If the break is greater, the ten year cap would apply still.
H. 4498 prohibits trespassing on
railroad tracks. Violators would be guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a
fine of not more than two hundred dollars ($200) or a sentence of not more
than thirty days. H.
the deregulated telecommunications market, is designed to ensure affordable
universal service. H.
4774 provides an
optional method of valuing Homeowner's Association Property for tax
purposes. The measure amends the code to define such
property, and requires
that owners of real property or their agents make a written application to
the county assessor to qualify for this provision.
conference committee appointed
Representatives Jake Knotts, Chip Limehouse, and Morgan Martin were
appointed to the conference committee for H. 3300. That bill requires public notification of
sex offenders living in the community. Currently these offenders are
required to register with law enforcement officials,
however, this list is
not open to the public. The House refused to concur with a Senate amendment
which would not require that the name of a person convicted of consensual
sex with a minor be included on the list. Senators Glen McConnell, Luke
Rankin, and Tyrone Courtney are the Senate conferees on that committee.
received third reading, to be ratified
H. 4523 approves
regulations of the
Health and Human Services Finance Commission. These regulations provide for
the addition of a categorically needy Medicaid coverage group extending
home care benefits to disabled children who would be
eligible for Medicaid
if in a medical institution. H. 4648
approves regulations of the Workers' Compensation Commission. These
regulations clarify language, facilitate practice before the Commission,
result in better recordkeeping, streamline procedures, and eliminate
unnecessary procedures, as well as reduce paperwork.
H. 4752 approves regulations of the Department of
Social Services. These regulations govern standards for licensing
facilities authorized to provide Supervised Independent Living Programs in
residential facilities, group care, and child placing agencies. The
revisions establish minimum program guidelines for two levels of
independent living services provided to persons aged
sixteen to twenty-one
years old. H. 4790,
known as the
"Banking and Branching Efficiency Act of 1996," authorizes banks
to keep their names when bought by out-of-state holding companies.
H. 4822, which was recalled from the
Senate Finance Committee last week, extends the due date for state income
taxes to be paid by military personnel stationed in Bosnia. Under this
joint resolution, payment would not be due until they return home.
received third reading, amended, returned to the House for
H. 3517 concerns
court assessments and
collecting fines in criminal cases, so as to provide that the money be
deposited in the State General Fund. H. 4064, regarding manufactured housing, provides
that construction standards apply to mobile homes as
well. The measure
requires that manufactured home contractors, installers, and repairers
warrant their work for twelve months. It provides that a criminal violation
is cause for denying a license to sell manufactured housing, and revises
some license expiration dates, as well as fines for license violations.
Another provision adds a tenth member to the "Manufactured Housing
Board" who must be a licensed manufactured home
or repairer. H. 4335
requirements and penalties for the importation of shellfish into the state.
received third reading, sent to the House
An outgrowth of the Confederate flag controversy, S. 947 would create an African-American History
Monument Committee to determine the design and placement on the State House
grounds of a marker to honor the achievements of African-Americans in the
state. The Commission would be empowered to raise funds for this monument.
It also would study the feasibility of establishing an African-American
History Museum similar to the Confederate Relic Room. The study would be
presented to the State House Committee by January 1,
1997. S. 1190 defers for a year repayment on a $400,000
state loan to Spoleto, USA. The loan is to be repaid in three equal annual
installments beginning June 30, 1997. The $4.6 million dollar budget for
this year's festival, which will be held May 24th through June 9th, is
about $150,000 more than anticipated. S. 1269 provides the Secretary of State with
discretion in determining whether to renew the license of a private
personnel agency when the licensee fails to apply for license renewal on
time. S. 1272 requires that referendum
questions and the sponsor's name must be on file with the State Election
Commission the next working day after the petition is received. S.
1278 revises the Commission on Prosecution
Coordination to delete the executive director of the
Academy as a member, and adds the Director of the Department of Public
Safety instead. S.
a local bill,
authorizes a referendum during the 1996 General Election to determine
whether to prohibit video poker payoffs in Kershaw County. S. 1315, revising the South Carolina/Georgia border,
changes the Lower Savannah River region, and provides that coordinates are
based on North American Datum 1927. This bill is the
Senate version of
H. 4859, which was introduced in the
House last week and assigned to the Judiciary Committee. S. 1316 is a joint resolution
approving the use of
electronic records by the Department of Archives and
History for record
concurrent resolution adopted
H. 4821 sets the
appeals court judicial
election for noon Wednesday, April 10, 1996. This concurrent resolution now
has been adopted by both chambers, as has H. 4797 which sets elections of members of higher
education trustee boards at the same time.
received second reading
S. 128 provides that driving with a
suspended, revoked, or canceled license is a misdemeanor. The bill also
decreases the sentence for a second offense from sixty days to thirty days,
allowing cases to be heard in magistrate's court rather than circuit court.
S. 659 provides that hotels with liquor
licenses may establish locked "hospitality cabinets" containing
no more than thirty mini-bottles. S. 1033 requires the Attorney
General to establish a
youth mentor program which combines church and community resources.
Participation in this program may be ordered by the Family Court as a
pretrial diversion option or as an alternative case disposition for
nonviolent offenders. S.
for binding arbitration as an alternative dispute resolution for state
employee grievances. The measusre specifies which grievances may be
mediated, and requires an employee to initiate a grievance within fourteen
days of the effective date of the action, rather than the current twenty-
one days. This bill is similar to H. 4520 which was reported favorably by the House
Judiciary Committee last week. S. 1122,
concerning property tax, was recalled from the Senate Finance Committee.
This joint resolution extends the deadline for applying for agricultural
use valuation for the 1995 tax year until July 1, 1996. The fiscal impact
of this action is uncertain. In response to a recent
1327 prohibits the Governor from reappointing
a current magistrate who fails to meet training or certification
requirements to a new term or to fill an existing vacancy. H. 3557 provides that a civic
organization which is
exempt from federal taxes does not have to file a registration statement
with the Secretary of State under the Solicitation of Charitable Funds Act.
The measure allows an organization to collect up to $20,000, rather than
the current $5,000, without having to file a registration statement. It
also provides that state and local governments do not have to file a
registration statement. For organizations which are not exempt, a financial
report covering the preceding fiscal year must be filed within four and
one-half months of the close of the organization's fiscal year. Currently
that report is due within two and one-half months. H.
3961 and H. 3962 are companion judicial reform measures.
H. 3961, dealing with the judicial
selection process, empowers the governor to appoint judges, including
administrative law judges, rather than having them elected by the General
Assembly as is done currently. The governor would appoint judges from a
list of nominees submitted by the Judicial Merit Selection Commission, an
independent nominating panel composed of legislators and members of the
public designed to weed out weak candidates. A Senate amendment to the
House bill details the composition, duties, and requirements of the
Commission, which was expanded to thirteen members rather than eleven. The
Senate plan does not limit the number of legislators on the Commission,
while the House proposal sets that number at six. Both proposals provide
for a public position on the Commission, and prohibit vote swapping. The
Senate amendment also requires that former legislators wait at least one
year before becoming judges, while the House-passed measure only required
that sitting legislators resign when announcing their candidacies. The
Senate measure provides for non-judicial screening and election, and
requires that family court judges be at least thirty-two years old, rather
than the current twenty-six years old, who have practiced law for at least
ten years, rather than the current five years. A grandfather clause is
provided for current family court judges who do not meet these provisions.
H. 3962 provides for a voter referendum
to determine whether nominees for the State Supreme Court, the Court of
Appeals, and the Circuit Court must be at least thirty-two years old, not
just twenty-six years old as is the current law, and must have practiced
law for at least ten years, not just five years. A grandfather clause is
provided for current judges who do not meet these provisions. Another
question on the ballot would establish the South Carolina Judicial Merit
Selection Commission. H.
that the South Carolina Research Authority may be known as the
"SCRA." It also authorizes the SCRA to form for-profit and not-
special order set
H. 3624 establishes the "South
Carolina Environmental Audit and Disclosure Immunity Act of 1996." The
measure seeks to increase voluntary compliance with environmental laws by
providing confidentiality for disclosure and limited
S. 1122 was recalled from the Senate
Finance Committee last week, and received second reading. The joint
resolution extends the deadline for applying for agricultural use valuation
for tax year 1995 through July 1, 1996. Its fiscal impact is uncertain.
H. 4822 extends the due date for state
income taxes to be paid by military personnel stationed in Bosnia. Under
the measure, payment would not be due until they return home. This joint
resolution received third reading in the Senate. Since both chambers have
adopted the measure, it has been enrolled for ratification.
S. 963 authorized the Citadel to
increase the principal on outstanding bonds from $25 to $35 million
dollars. The bill was recommitted to the Senate Finance Committee since a
similar measure, H.
received third reading in the Senate. An amendment to the House bill,
however, provided for "The Higher Education Revenue Bond Act,"
which will impact borrowing by all higher education institutions. The House
concurred with the amendment, and the bill has been enrolled for
AGRICULTURE, NATURAL RESOURCES, AND ENVIRONMENTAL
While the full Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Environmental Affairs
Committee did not meet last week, the Environmental Affairs 11 subcommittee
reported favorably on three bills. S. 68
grants immunity from liability for a technical expert providing advice and
assistance to a local government during a hazardous materials emergency.
H. 4717 defines "structural
fill" and restricts local governments from regulating solid waste
facilities. Also, the measure authorizes the Department of Health and
Environmental Control to issue permits for short term structural fills
which operate less than twelve months. H. 4785 provides a uniform framework conforming the
licensure and regulation of veterinarians in the state with provisions
affecting other professional and occupational boards.
Subcommittee members also approved a regulation of the Department of Health
and Environmental Control (DHEC). The regulation concerns the land
application, or use, of non-hazardous solid waste for beneficial
agricultural, silvicultural, and horticultural purposes--not as a means of
disposal. It encourages and establishes criteria for the recycling of
materials which historically have been disposed of in a landfill but may be
used instead to produce crops or forest products, or on land being
reclaimed to enhance its aesthetic value or to reduce environmental
EDUCATION AND PUBLIC WORKS
Last week, the full Education and Public Works Committee gave a favorable
report to H. 4443,
as amended, the
Charter Schools Act. The legislation would allow the formation of schools
within districts which are freed from certain statewide regulations,
capable of employing unlicensed teaching personnel, and organized around
specialized academic missions. The Committee also reported favorably on
H. 3803, as amended, a bill which
raises the ages at which driver's licenses and permits may be obtained. The bill raises from sixteen to seventeen the minimum age at which one may
receive a driver's license. An individual who is at
least fifteen years of
age and who has passed all portions of the examination except the driving
test may receive a twelve-month beginner's permit which allows driving
during daylight hours under the supervision of someone at least twenty-one
years old with at least one year of driving experience. A restricted
driver's license may be issued to one who: is at least fifteen but no older
than seventeen; has held a beginner's permit; and, has passed the road test
and all other examination requirements. The restricted license allows
unsupervised driving during the daylight hours and nighttime driving when
accompanied by a licensed driver at least twenty-one
years of age. H. 4447, a bill which, as introduced,
would have eliminated the qualification allowing a child who owns property
in a school district to attend school in that district was amended by the
full Committee such that only children whose parents are South Carolina
residents would be able to take advantage of the property ownership
qualification. The amended version which the Committee reported out
favorably prevents students from crossing over from neighboring states to
attend public school in South Carolina by purchasing
property in this
Committee members reported favorably on five measures last week. H.
4434 provides for reinstatement of a person's
driver's license after a fourth driving under the influence (DUI) offense. To apply for reinstatement, a person must have had no violations for a
period of five years immediately prior to filing the
convicted of felony DUI would not be eligible for reinstatement. Also, if a
person has had his license permanently revoked after a fourth DUI offense
and later was convicted of another DUI offense, he would not be eligible
for reinstatement. H.
4469, known as
the "South Carolina Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996," limits
the appeals process and empowers the governor to set
execution dates rather
than the State Supreme Court. Deadlines would be set for filing post-
conviction death penalty relief appeals. Prosecutors
would have thirty days
to answer an appeal rather than the current ninety days. Fifteen days
later, a status conference would have to be held. A hearing would be
scheduled forty-five days after the status conference. A judge's ruling
would be required within thirty days of the hearing.
H. 4520 provides for binding arbitration as an
alternative dispute resolution for state employee grievances. It also
requires an employee to initiate a grievance within fourteen days of the
effective date of the action, rather than the current twenty-one days.
Reclassifications would not be considered a grievance unless initiated as a
punitive measure; however, a demotion, salary decrease based on
performance, and suspension may be considered grievances. H. 4663 provides that the granting of bail is
discretionary, but would continue to be prohibited for offenders serving
death or life sentences, or serving a ten year or longer sentence.
H. 4811 is a joint resolution creating
the Committee for Improved Race Relations. The measure requires the
committee to submit recommendations to the General Assembly by May 13, 1996
to alleviate racial problems and tensions in the state.
LABOR, COMMERCE, AND INDUSTRY
The Banking and Consumer Affairs Subcommittee gave favorable reports to two
bills. H. 4650 establishes the Board
of Towing and Recovery for the purpose of governing the state's towing and
vehicle storage industry. H. 4701
allows financial institutions to open new deposit accounts at public events
or commercial locations (i.e. college campuses, trade shows, open air
markets, etc.) so long as the sponsoring organization gives permission.
The Labor and Commerce Subcommittee recommended approval for R. 1909, a regulation promulgated by the Pilotage
Commission for the Port of Charleston to add prerequisites for
apprenticeship applications and repeal the age cap for pilots.
MEDICAL, MILITARY, PUBLIC AND MUNICIPAL AFFAIRS
The Health and Environmental Affairs Subcommittee gave a favorable report
to H. 4649, The Central Cancer Registry
Act. Prompted by funding from the federal Center for Disease Control, the
bill establishes a central cancer registry under the
administration of the
Department of Health and Environmental Control to compile statistics from
all health care providers who diagnose and/or treat cancer and use this
information to formulate a plan for cancer prevention, enhanced detection,
and improved care.
The Social Services, Mental Health and Children's Affairs Subcommittee
reported favorably on two bills. H. 4277 brings South Carolina
discrimination law into accordance with the standards of the federal
Americans with Disabilities Act. The bill makes it unlawful for an
employer to: (1) deny jobs or benefits to someone because of a disability,
(2) refuse to make reasonable accommodations so that an otherwise qualified
person with a disability may be employed, (3) use tests or examinations
which are not job skill-related and tend to screen out disabled applicants. S. 922 makes two changes with regard to
the Division of Foster Care Review: (1) requires the
division to make its
annual report and recommendations to the Governor rather than the General
Assembly, (2) removes the required twenty-one day maximum for a child
caring agency to notify a local review board when disagreeing with the
board's recommendation that a child be placed in the
WAYS AND MEANS
Committee members reported favorably on eight measures last week. S.
699 increases the interest rate for the
redemption of real property sold for delinquent taxes from eight to twelve
per cent in the last six months of the redemption period. H. 4557 enacts better control over Bingo operations
in the state, while providing that Bingo winnings would not be subject to
individual state income tax. Promoters will be limited to five licenses,
with only one class of license. Manufacturers and distributors now will be
licensed. H. 4631
provides a tax
exemption for non coin-operated laundry, dry-cleaning, dyeing and pressing
services and sales. H.
4706 enacts the
"South Carolina Rural Development Act of 1996." The proposed
legislation revises the Enterprize Zone Act passed last year and the
Economic Development Cluster Act adopted earlier this year. The proposed
legislation gives greater tax breaks to industries locating in least
developed and underdeveloped counties, usually rural
with major investments could negotiate with local governments for lower
property taxes. They could pay three per cent rather than the current six
per cent for a period of thirty years rather than twenty years as it now
stands. H. 4825 clarifies last
session's gas tax bill. The bill provides that license taxes are in lieu
of other taxes, and provides that the backup tax applies to alternative
fuels as well. Another provision states that a license may be suspended or
revoked for failure to comply with deferred payment.
H. 4833 updates the Procedures Act of 1995 to comply
with current provisions. It makes the statute of limitations on gas tax
consistent with other taxes, and clarifies provisions related to unclaimed
property and jeopardy assessments. Time limitations for protest and filing
periods are extended. H.
numerous revisions to state tax laws. The bill provides that income tax
forms may be mailed first class rather than certified or registered mail.
It authorizes alternative means for signing returns, and redefines
liabilities of innocent spouses where the primary responsibility for the
incurred tax rests with the other spouse. Another provision deletes the
requirement of certified notification for revocation of licenses. H. 4835 makes numerous revisions
concerning property taxes. Among other provisions, the bill limits the four
per cent residential assessment to only one residence, and requires the
values of watercraft and aircraft to be reduced at least five per cent per
year beginning after tax year 1996. It expands the term "boat" to
include "watercraft," and changes the method of providing the tax
exemption for watercraft from a fifteen dollar ($15) tax bill to a fifty
dollar ($50) assessed value. The proposed legislation provides that
reassessment programs are to occur on a five year cycle, and removes the
requirement to value standing timber for purposes of
rollback taxes. Also,
it requires that taxes be paid prior to a delinquent sale rather than on
the sale date.
AGRICULTURE, NATURAL RESOURCES, AND ENVIRONMENTAL
No bills were assigned to this committee last week.
EDUCATION AND PUBLIC WORKS
PLATES Sen. Martin
This bill allows dealer license plates to be used on
vehicles which the
dealer lends to economic development personnel employed by the county.
LOCATION OF GRADES ONE
THROUGH FIVE Rep. Cave
This bill provides that classrooms for grades one through five be located
on the first or second floors of school buildings.
ALL TERRAIN VEHICLES Rep. Harvin
This bill allows four-wheel all terrain vehicles to be operated on the
state's public highways only by those drivers who: (1) possess a driver
permit or license, (2) successfully complete a course on all-terrain
vehicle safety certified by the Department of Public
Safety, (3) wear a
helmet and other safety equipment which the department finds necessary.
PAGING DEVICES IN
SCHOOLS Rep. Allison
This bill provides that unlawful paging devices confiscated at schools
shall not be forfeited to school districts, but rather returned to owners
at the end of the school term.
BALLOT POSTING Sen. Leventis
The measure requires that referendum questions and the sponsor's name be
available for public inspection at the State Election Commission the next
working day after the petition is received.
BOUNDARY Rep. Wilkins
Revising the South Carolina/Georgia border, this bill establishes the
boundary of the Lower Savannah River region. It also
coordinates are based on North American Datum 1927.
TAXES Rep. Kennedy
Under current law, a person's driver's license and vehicle registration may
be suspended when property tax on a vehicle is delinquent. This measure
provides that only vehicle registration may be suspended in these cases,
not a driver's license.
PROTECTION FROM DOMESTIC
ABUSE Rep. Harrison
The proposed legislation authorizes the issuance of an ex parte order for
protection from domestic abuse under certain conditions. The ex parte order
also may address alimony, child custody and support issues.
SECRETARY OF STATE Rep. Harrison
The measure abolishes the office of Secretary of State and transfers its
powers to other constitutional offices and state agencies.
CANDIDATES Rep. Trotter
The bill requires that names of all candidates for selection as nominees of
a political party must be disclosed to anyone who requests this information
at any time during the filing period.
LABOR, COMMERCE, AND INDUSTRY
REAL ESTATE BOARDS Rep. Boan
This bill brings the licensure and regulation of real estate brokers,
counselors, salesmen, appraisers, auctioneers, and property managers under
a uniform framework for the organization and operation of professional and
BENEFITS Rep. Lanford
This bill provides that no individual otherwise eligible for unemployment
benefits shall be denied those benefits when leaving work voluntarily to
accompany a spouse who has been transferred to a certain location, so long
as the individual actively attempts to secure employment in the new area
for a period of six months.
INSURANCE FOR COASTAL AREAS Rep. Cato
This bill allows any private insurer licensed to underwrite essential
property insurance to use insurance premium rates of
ninety percent, or
less, of the rates then approved by the South Carolina Wind and Hail
Underwriting Association for use in the state's coastal area.
OCCUPATIONAL REGULATION Rep. Sharpe
This bill authorizes the Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation to
provide administrative regulation for occupations and professions,
including advisory and disciplinary panels.
MEDICAL, MILITARY, PUBLIC AND MUNICIPAL AFFAIRS
CENTRAL CANCER REGISTRY
ACT Sen. Wilson
This bill establishes the Central Cancer Registry within the Department of
Health and Environmental Control to compile statistics from all health care
providers who diagnose and/or treat cancer and use this information to
formulate a plan for cancer prevention, enhanced detection, and improved
care. Also, DHEC is authorized to provide aid to any cancer patient, not
simply indigent patients.
WAYS AND MEANS
VIDEO POKER PAYOFFS Sen. Holland
Affecting only Kershaw County, this joint resolution
referendum during the 1996 General Election to determine whether to
prohibit video poker payoffs.
The Legislative Update is now on-line! Members and staff who are on the
network may access documents by pressing "List Files (F5)," then
typing "H:\UPDATE" and pressing "enter." All of the
Legislative Updates will be listed by week. Using up/down arrows, choose
the Legislative Update which corresponds to the week you need and press
If you need or prefer to access the Legislative Update through the World
Wide Web, visit the South Carolina General Assembly Home Page. Click on the
"Quick-Find Guide" on the first page. On the next page, click on
"Reports." This will list all of the Legislative Updates by week.
Click on the week you need.
Follow the links in this index to pull up the paragraph in this issue discussing the bill concerned. Follow the link in that paragraph to pull up the bill's text, history, and status.