Thursday, June 5, 2014on
This week has been a long and busy week - I jokingly told a group in Greenwood this morning that I have been on a state tour this week - with trips to Anderson, two to Columbia, Greenwood, Greer, and Greenville in between. I've spent time on the interstate as well as country roads, and in two months have put 4,500 miles on my car. I'm sitting in the lobby of the statehouse, waiting for 5 pm and for the legislature to wrap up the 2014 legislative session. By law, the SC General Assembly must adjourn sine die at 5 pm today. Sine die in latin is translated "without day" or meaning without a new date being set. In this context, it is an adjournment until the next session of the General Assembly in January of 2015. Unfortunately when the legislature adjourns today, the biggest priority of the business community for the year will have largely been ignored. Dedicated funding for SC’s crumbling infrastructure and highway system was not included in either version of the budget and has not been debated at all this year. Last year’s efforts to address the state’s dire infrastructure needs were just a starting point, and the business community urged the legislature to continue working toward solving our state’s road funding needs. In two weeks, the legislature will come back for a couple of days in two weeks to finish vetoes from the Governor and handle a couple of bills still in conference committee. A few items of note, like a statewide text while driving ban, expanded education funding, and bill aimed at attracting breweries to SC did get done this year. For a full report on what happened this year, check back at the end of June when we will publish our 2014 Legislative Recap.