Dear Friends and Neighbors:
We have been busy this month, the last full month of the session. The Senate passed its budget and it now has come back to the House for review and amendments.
Here are all of the legislative highlights from this month. As always, I am interested in hearing your thoughts and concerns on the issues.
Thank you for the honor and privilege of serving you in the South Carolina House of Representatives.
HOUSE WEEK IN REVIEW May 6, 2013 – FURLOUGH
HOUSE WEEK IN REVIEW May 13, 2013
The House of Representatives returned S.22, the “SOUTH CAROLINA RESTRUCTURING ACT OF 2013″, to the Senate with amendments. The bill provides for comprehensive changes to the organization and oversight of state government. The legislation abolishes the State Budget and Control Board and transfers the majority of the board’s functions to a new Department of Administration that is established in the executive branch and headed by a director who is appointed by the Governor upon the advice and consent of the Senate.
The House concurred in Senate amendments to H.3725, the“SAFE ACCESS TO VITAL EPINEPHRINE (SAVE) ACT” and enrolled the bill for ratification. The legislation allows the state’s public and private schools to keep supplies of epinephrine auto-injectors, also known as EpiPens, in stock and affords schools greater authority to administer this potentially life-saving medication to those who are experiencing severe allergic reactions.
The House approved S.250 and enrolled the bill for ratification. The legislation establishes an EXEMPTION FOR PUBLIC SCHOOL DISTRICTS AND PUBLIC SCHOOLS FROM CHARITABLE SOLICITATION ACT REGISTRATION REQUIREMENTS. This public school exemption includes a student organization within the school that does not maintain separate financial accounts or a separate Federal Employer’s Identification Number from the school and whose fundraising revenues are deposited in the school’s student activity fund.
The House approved and sent the Senate H.3013, a bill relating toFREE PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION FOR QUALIFYING VETERANS. This legislation requires regional transportation authorities to develop and implement programs within their service areas that make public transportation available at no charge for certain qualifying veterans.
The House amended, approved, and sent the Senate H.3098, a bill dealing with the rights of LONG-TERM CARE FACILITY RESIDENTS. The legislation provides that if the residential care resident or the resident’s representative chooses to voluntarily relocate from the resident’s current facility, the resident or the resident’s representative must give written notice of intent to relocate not less than fourteen days before the resident’s relocation becomes effective.
HOUSE WEEK IN REVIEW May 20, 2013
The House of Representatives amended, approved, and sent the Senate H.3165, a bill that provides for the DISQUALIFICATION FROM UNEMPLOYMENT COMPENSATION FOR FAILING TO PASS A PROSPECTIVE EMPLOYER’S DRUG SCREENING. The legislation expands the criteria under which an individual is disqualified from receiving unemployment benefits for failure to seek work so that they include situations where an individual tests positive for illicit drugs in a screening required by a prospective employer as a condition of an offer of employment, refuses to take the drug test, or provides an adulterated specimen.
The House approved H.3236, the “CERVICAL CANCER PREVENTION ACT”, and sent the bill to the Senate. Beginning with the 2013-2014 school year, the Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) may offer the cervical cancer vaccination series for adolescent students enrolling in the seventh grade in any school, public or private, in this state.
The House amended, approved, and sent the Senate H.3592, a bill revising ENERGY EFFICIENT AND ENVIRONMENTALLY SUSTAINABLE BUILDING STANDARDS FOR STATE CONSTRUCTION. The legislation revises the “Energy Independence and Sustainable Construction Act of 2007”, to provide that the Budget and Control Board may utilize the Green Globes Rating System or the LEED Silver standard in place as of January 1, 2013, as a building rating system standard.
The House returned S.143 to the Senate with amendments. The legislation makes COMPREHENSIVE REVISIONS TO PROBATE AND TRUST CODE PROVISIONS which have not been updated or revised in a systematic fashion in several decades. The legislation does not revise the statutes governing guardians, conservators, and powers of attorneys.
HOUSE WEEK IN REVIEW May 27, 2013
The House of Representatives amended, approved, and sent the Senate H.3827, legislation providing for an EXPEDITED APPEAL OF DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROL DECISIONS that allows someone who has been denied a permit or received another unfavorable decision from agency staff to bypass an appeal of the decision to the DHEC Board and, instead, take their contested case directly to the Administrative Law Court.
The House concurred in Senate amendments to H.3061, legislation establishing a protocol for addressing STUDENT ATHLETES AND CONCUSSIONS in K-12 public education, and enrolled the bill for ratification. These model guidelines and procedures must be used by local school districts to develop guidelines and procedures which apply to South Carolina High School League sanctioned events.
The House insisted upon its amendments to S.22, the “SOUTH CAROLINA RESTRUCTURING ACT OF 2013”, and appointed a conference committee to address differences with the Senate on the legislation.
The House concurred in Senate amendments to H.3751 and enrolled the bill for ratification. The legislation enhances the state’s UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE PROGRAM INTEGRITY by establishing provisions that authorize the Department of Employment and Workforce to assess a twenty-five percent monetary penalty on improper unemployment compensation payments resulting from false statements or failure to disclose material facts.
The House approved S.117, relating to AUTHORIZATION FOR THE DISCLOSURE OF MEDICAL
INFORMATION, and enrolled the bill for ratification. The legislation revises the Adult Health Care Consent Act by requiring a health care provider to include on the patient information form an opportunity for the patient to designate a family member or other individual with whom the provider may discuss the patient’s medical condition and treatment.
The House returned S.341, the “EMERSON ROSE ACT”, which establishes new provisions for the DETECTION OF CRITICAL CONGENITAL HEART DEFECTS IN NEWBORNS, to the Senate with amendments. The legislation directs the Department of Health and Environmental Control to require each licensed birthing facility to perform on every newborn in its care a pulse oximetry or other department-approved screening to detect critical congenital heart defects when the baby is twenty‑four to forty‑eight hours of age, or as late as possible if the baby is discharged from the hospital before reaching twenty‑four hours of age.
The House amended, approved, and sent the Senate H.3717. This legislation includes in the purview of the HARASSMENT AND STALKING OFFENSES persons who commit the offenses while subject to the terms of a restraining order issued by the family court and who have been issued a previous warning by a law enforcement officer.