March 29, 2005
Vol. 22, No. 12
South Carolina House of Representatives
David H. Wilkins, Speaker of the House
OFFICE OF RESEARCH
Room 213, Blatt Building, P.O. Box 11867, Columbia, S.C.
29211, (803) 734-3230
NOTE: Bill summaries included in this document are prepared by the staff of the South Carolina House of Representatives and are not the expression of the legislation's sponsor(s) or the House of Representatives. The summaries are strictly for the internal use and benefit of members of the House of Representatives and are not to be construed by a court of law as an expression of legislative intent.
Legislative Update, March 29, 2005
BILLS INTRODUCED IN THE
HOUSE THIS WEEK
S.185 REQUIREMENTS OF VOTE RECORDERS; BALLOT STANDARDS AND SPECIFICATIONS (VOTES FOR PRESIDENT) Sen. Martin
Current law provides that the official ballot for presidential electors shall not be combined with any other official ballots. The bill deletes the prohibition against combining the official ballot for presidential electors with any other official ballots. With regards to the requirements of vote recorders in S.C. Code Ann. §7-13-1340, this bill adds references to optical can voting devices as well as deletes provisions requiring separate votes for candidates for the offices of presidential electors.
H.3792 PENALTIES FOR THEFT OF ELECTRIC CURRENT AND PENALTIES FOR ALTERING, TAMPERING WITH OR BYPASSING ELECTRIC, GAS, OR WATER METERS Rep. Funderburk
This bill pertains to the penalties for theft of electric current as well as penalties for altering, tampering with or bypassing electric, gas or water meters. The bill provides that in addition to the criminal penalties for these violations, a person violating these provisions of law shall also be liable to the electric, gas or water supplier in an amount equal to triple the losses or damages sustained by the supplier as a result of the violation.
H.3795 SMOKING IN A RESTAURANT Rep. Rutherford
This bill provides that it is unlawful for a person to smoke or possess lighted smoking material in any form in a restaurant. A person violating this provision is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined not less than $50 dollars nor more than $75 dollars.
LABOR, COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY
H.3796 LICENSURE AND REGULATION OF REAL ESTATE APPRAISERS Rep. Cato
This bill conforms statutory provisions for the licensure and regulation of real estate appraisers to the organizational framework established for professional and occupational boards under the administration of the Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation. The legislation makes other changes including revisions to classroom or course hour requirements for appraisal permits, licensure, and certification.
MEDICAL, MILITARY, PUBLIC AND MUNICIPAL AFFAIRS
S.144 INDIVIDUAL HEALTH CARE PLANS FOR STUDENTS WITH SPECIAL HEALTH CARE NEEDS Sen. Mescher
This bill requires each school district to adopt a policy requiring that students with special health care needs have individual health care plans. The State Department of Education shall develop guidelines for required components of a written student individual health care plan. This bill requires the policy to provide for the authorization of a student to self-monitor and self-administer medication as prescribed by the student's health care provider unless there is sufficient evidence that unsupervised self-monitoring or self-medicating would seriously jeopardize the safety of the student or others. The bill outlines certain issues that the policy must address, including requiring the parent of the student to provide certain medical information. The bill provides immunity for districts and their employees for an injury a student may sustain as a result of self-monitoring or self-administering medications or for an injury that a student may sustain from taking or using medications or self-monitoring devices for which the student does not have a prescription or does not have authorization by the school district.
WAYS AND MEANS
S.209 PROPERTY TAX EXEMPTIONS Sen. Grooms
This bill extends the current property tax exemption allowed for property owned by volunteer fire departments and rescue squads to property leased to a department or squad by an entity itself exempt from property tax.
S.286 TRANSFER OF OWNERSHIP OF SURPLUS ARMORY Sen. Hawkins
This joint resolution authorizes the transfer of ownership of a certain surplus National Guard Armory in Inman, South Carolina, to the Spartanburg County District One School Board.
S.483 "SOUTH CAROLINA STATE UNIVERSITY ACADEMIC AND ADMINISTRATIVE FACILITIES BOND ACT" Sen. Matthews
This bill prescribes the manner in which, and conditions under which, South Carolina State University may issue certain revenue bonds to finance or refinance all or part of the cost of acquisition, construction, renovation, and improvement of land, buildings, and other improvements to real property and equipment for the purpose of providing certain academic and administrative buildings.
H.3793 PARTICIPATION IN STATE HEALTH AND DENTAL PLAN Rep. Bowers
This bill provides that a Soil and Water Conservation District Commissioner is eligible to participate in the State Health and Dental Insurance Plans by paying the full premium costs as determined by the State Budget and Control Board.
H.3794 SOUTH CAROLINA RESEARCH AUTHORITY Rep. Harrell
This bill makes numerous changes to the South Carolina Research Authority (SCRA), including but not limited to the following:
- Creates two divisions within the SCRA - the South Carolina Research Division (SCRD) and the South Carolina Research Innovation Centers (SCRIC);
- Revises the composition of the SCRA board, including:
- Deleting the Chair of the Technical Advisory Board of the SCRA as an ex officio member and adding as ex officio members, the Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, the Chair of the Senate Finance Committee, and the Secretary of Commerce, or their respective designees;
- Reducing from ten to six the remaining trustees who are appointed by the ex officio members (one from each Congressional District);
- Creating an Executive Committee of the board, comprised of the Presidents of Clemson, MUSC, and USC-Columbia, and the Governor or his designee, and authorizing this Executive Committee to implement recommendations and direct the executive director on policy decisions for day-to-day operations of the SCRA;
- Requiring the Executive Committee to appoint a business and science advisory board to include representatives from each research university, the venture capital industry, relevant industry leaders, and the Department of Commerce, and charging this advisory board to advise the board when requested;
- Deletes the Technical Advisory Board of the SCRA, whose current purpose is to advise and assist the board when so requested;
- Requires and provides for the SCRIC to establish three Research Innovation Centers in South Carolina (one in Charleston associated with MUSC, one in Columbia associated with USC, and one in the Upstate associated with Clemson) to: enhance the research and technology transition capabilities of the three research universities, establish a continuing dialogue forum between the research universities and industry, and promote the development of high tech industries and applied research facilities in South Carolina;
- Requires that the SCRIC be funded by a direct payment of funds by the SCRA, as delineated in the bill, for at least the first three years of the centers' existence;
- Requires that costs associated with the physical space for the centers must be financed through the issuance of general obligation debt or by private match funding, as provided in the bill;
- Authorizes the SCRIC to:
- admit qualified companies, as described in the bill, and pre-company initiatives into a center and grant these companies up to two hundred thousand dollars each as well as physical and staff resources;
- allow these companies to remain in an innovation center for up to four years or until exceeding one million dollars in annual commercial revenue;
- Allow rent and fees for services initially to be waived;
- Requires the SCRIC to use monetary grants for proof-of-concept studies, Small Business Innovation Research program matches, the protection of intellectual property, and other similar uses.
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