Rep. Gary Simrill on a solution for DOT’s finances

Some major contractors doing road work in South Carolina are struggling to pay their employees. State lawmakers told Eyewitness News that the reason is a holdup of millions of dollars in federal money. The South Carolina Department of Transportation is behind on payments to these contractors, but Eyewitness News has learned that state officials say the real problem is in Washington, not Columbia. It's not clear how much money is owed, or how many contractors haven't been paid. However, … [Read more...]

House gives Haley 3 key wins

New Gov. Nikki Haley had a very good day in the S.C. House on Wednesday as lawmakers approved several of her highest priorities. But those wins may not translate into law unless the Senate and, in some cases, S.C. voters agree, too. And the Senate, in particular, has proven itself immune to gubernatorial agendas, rejecting — in other years — almost all of the proposals passed Wednesday by the House. “Today, we earned big wins for the people of our state, and we couldn’t be more … [Read more...]

House Panel OKs Abortion Restrictions

Legislation advanced Thursday in the General Assembly that would allow health care workers to opt out of performing some work tasks and limit insurance coverage for elective abortions. A subcommittee of House members approved a bill, dubbed the Freedom of Conscience Act that allows hospital workers, nurses, pharmacists and others in the health care field to give written notice to their employer if they morally object to performing certain work tasks. Lawmakers also … [Read more...]

House Approves Government Restructuring Bills for the Fourth Time

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina House voted to consolidate more of our state’s administrative power in the hands of the Governor this afternoon by approving three major restructuring bills. “Once again, conservatives in the House have taken a major first step in creating a state government more accountable for the decisions it makes,” said House Majority Leader Kenny Bingham.  “Approval of this legislation means more of the administrative branch will be actually be under the control … [Read more...]

State Budget Receives Committee Approval

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- The House Ways and Means Committee put the finishing touches on the state’s $5.1 billion General Fund budget Thursday afternoon -- finding new efficiencies in state government, fully funding Medicaid, and increasing the "base student cost" sent to school districts. "There were few good choices this year, but this balanced budget reflects the base conservative value that it is better to cut the size of government than to raise taxes -- especially during these economic times," … [Read more...]

State Charter Schools Receive New Funding Source

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The House of Representatives approved new funding for the state’s public charter schools, helping push money to these innovative public schools as they provide choices for our state’s parents. “By passing this bill, the House clearly voiced its support for our public charter schools and the students who attend them,” said House Speaker Bobby Harrell. “Education funding should be tied to the needs of individual students in the classroom. Providing an opportunity for our … [Read more...]

PAID FOR BY GARY SIMRILL FOR HOUSE