Indicates Matter Stricken
Indicates New Matter
The House assembled at 12:00 Noon.
Deliberations were opened with prayer by the Chaplain of the House of Representatives, the Rev. Dr. Alton C. Clark as follows:
Keep us always aware, Lord God, of the far reaching effects of the things said and done here - not only people of today, but those of generations to come. Cause us, then, to plan wisely and to act with wisdom knowing that it is better to look ahead and prepare than to look backward and regret. Take our words and actions as humble offerings as we strive to do Your will. Make us ready with the discipline and self-control for the demands of the age in which we serve. With Your benediction, may we face the awaiting tasks before us with honest dealings, clear thinking and worthy purpose.
And to You, our God, we give thanksgiving and praise. Amen.
Pursuant to Rule 6.3, the House of Representatives was led in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America by the SPEAKER.
After corrections to the Journal of the proceedings of Friday, the SPEAKER ordered it confirmed.
Rep. INABINETT moved that when the House adjourns, it adjourn in memory of Susie M. Kennedy, mother of Rep. KENNEDY of Greeleyville, which was agreed to.
The following was received and referred to the appropriate committee for consideration.
Document No. 1895
Promulgated By Department of Health and Environmental Control
Solid Waste Management: Land Application of Solid Waste
Received By Speaker February 16, 1996
Referred to House Committee on Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs
120 Day Review Expiration Date June 15, 1996 (Subject to sine die revision)
The following was received.
Columbia, S.C., February 15, 1996
Mr. Speaker and Members of the House:
The Senate respectfully informs your Honorable Body that it has overridden the veto by the Governor on R. 237, H. 4473 by a vote of 44 to 0.
(R237) H. 4473 -- Reps. Littlejohn, Wells, Wilder, Walker, Davenport, Lanford, Allison, Lee, Vaughn and D. Smith: AN ACT TO AMEND ACT 879 OF 1960, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE CREATION OF THE CROFT FIRE DISTRICT IN SPARTANBURG COUNTY, SO AS TO INCREASE THE BOARD OF FIRE CONTROL FROM THREE TO FIVE AND DECREASE FROM SIX TO FOUR YEARS THE LENGTH OF THE TERM OF THE COMMISSIONERS.
Received as information.
The following was received.
Columbia, S.C., February 15, 1996
Mr. Speaker and Members of the House:
The Senate respectfully informs your Honorable Body that it has overridden the veto by the Governor on R. 230, H. 3161 by a vote of 44 to 0.
(R230) H. 3161 -- Rep. Littlejohn: AN ACT TO AMEND ACT 388 OF 1969, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE CREATION OF THE GLENDALE AREA FIRE DISTRICT IN SPARTANBURG COUNTY, SO AS TO INCREASE THE BOARD OF FIRE CONTROL FROM THREE TO FIVE.
Received as information.
The following was received.
Columbia, S.C., February 15, 1996
Mr. Speaker and Members of the House:
The Senate respectfully informs your Honorable Body that it has appointed Senators Greg Smith, Elliott and Rankin of the Committee of Conference on the part of the Senate on S. 275:
S. 275 -- Senator Greg Smith: A BILL TO AMEND SECTION 50-21-860 OF THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO THE RESTRICTIONS ON THE USE OF AIRBOATS, SO AS TO PROHIBIT THE USE OF AIRBOATS ON THE WACCAMAW, THE GREAT PEE DEE, THE LITTLE PEE DEE, THE BLACK, AND THE SAMPIT RIVERS IN GEORGETOWN COUNTY.
Received as information.
The following Bills and Joint Resolution were introduced, read the first time, and referred to appropriate committees:
H. 4600 -- Ways and Means Committee: A BILL TO MAKE APPROPRIATIONS TO MEET THE ORDINARY EXPENSES OF THE STATE GOVERNMENT FOR THE FISCAL YEAR BEGINNING, JULY 1, 1996, AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES; TO REGULATE THE EXPENDITURE OF SUCH FUNDS; TO FURTHER PROVIDE FOR THE OPERATION OF THE STATE GOVERNMENT DURING THE FISCAL YEAR; TO APPROPRIATE FUNDS ALLOTTED TO THE STATE GOVERNMENT UNDER THE PUBLIC WORKS EMPLOYMENT ACT OF 1976 (FEDERAL); TO REPEAL SECTIONS 11-11-60, 11-11-130, AND 11-25-110, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO OBSOLETE PROVISIONS RELATING TO THE FORMER RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE STATE BUDGET AND CONTROL IN THE BUDGET-MAKING PROCESS AND AGENCY REPORTING REQUIREMENTS; TO REPEAL SECTION 1-11-21 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO REPORTING DATES FOR THE ANNUAL BUDGET REPORT; TO AMEND SECTION 48-48-140 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE TAX ON LOW-LEVEL RADIOACTIVE WASTE DISPOSAL OF TWO HUNDRED THIRTY-FIVE DOLLARS A CUBIC FOOT AND THE DISTRIBUTION OF THIS REVENUE, AND SECTION 59-143-10, RELATING TO THE SOUTH CAROLINA EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE ENDOWMENT FUND (FUND), SO AS TO CHANGE THE NAME OF THIS FUND TO THE "CHILDREN'S EDUCATION ENDOWMENT"; TO AMEND SECTION 12-28-2720 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO DISTRIBUTION OF THE REVENUES OF THE 10.34 CENTS A GALLON TAX ON GASOLINE, SO AS TO PHASE-IN THE CREDITING OF THE TOTAL AMOUNT OF THE TAX TO THE STATE HIGHWAY FUND; TO AMEND SECTION 12-28-2470(C), AS AMENDED, OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE "C" FUNDS PROGRAM, SO AS TO INCREASE FROM TWENTY-FIVE TO FIFTY PERCENT THAT PORTION OF A COUNTY'S ALLOCATION OF "C" FUNDS THAT MUST BE EXPENDED ON HIGHWAY CONSTRUCTION, IMPROVEMENTS, AND MAINTENANCE; TO AMEND THE 1976 CODE BY ADDING SECTION 12-37-935 SO AS TO PROVIDE A PHASED-IN INCREASE IN THE DEPRECIATION ALLOWANCE FOR MANUFACTURER'S MACHINERY AND EQUIPMENT FOR PURPOSES OF THE PROPERTY TAX AND TO PROVIDE FOR THE REIMBURSEMENT OF LOCAL TAXING ENTITIES FOR REVENUES NOT COLLECTED BECAUSE OF THIS ADDITIONAL DEPRECIATION; AND TO AMEND SECTION 12-37-930, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO VALUATION OF PROPERTY AND DEPRECIATION OF MANUFACTURER'S MACHINERY AND EQUIPMENT FOR PURPOSES OF THE PROPERTY TAX, SO AS TO CONFORM IT TO THE PROVISIONS OF SECTION 12-37-935 AS ADDED BY THIS ACT; TO AMEND SECTION 12-28-2730 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THAT PORTION OF GASOLINE TAX CREDITED TO THE SPECIAL WATER RECREATIONAL RESOURCES FUND, SO AS TO PROVIDE FOR THE REIMBURSEMENT OF THE DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES FOR NOXIOUS AQUATIC WEED TREATMENT; TRANSFERRING ADMINISTRATION OF THE BATTERED SPOUSE PROGRAM OF THE DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES AND THE RAPE CRISIS CENTER PROGRAM OF THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENTAL CONTROL TO THE STATE OFFICE OF VICTIM'S ASSISTANCE IN THE OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR; TO REPEAL SECTION 11-9-60 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO CERTAIN OFFICES FURNISHING THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL WITH REPORTS OF EVIDENCES OF INDEBTEDNESS DUE TO THE STATE; TO REPEAL SECTION 1-11-380 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE STATEWIDE VENDOR CODING SYSTEM AND SECTION 1-11-390, RELATING TO THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL'S ACCUMULATION AND REPORTING OF EXPENDITURE TRANSACTIONS AND HIS DETERMINATION OF THE SUMMARY LEVEL FOR REPORTING UNDER THE FISCAL ACCOUNTABILITY ACT; TO REPEAL SECTION 11-5-40 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE ISSUANCE OF DUPLICATE RECEIPTS TO CERTAIN PERSONS; TO REPEAL SECTION 11-9-100 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE BUDGET AND CONTROL BOARD'S AUTHORITY TO WITHHOLD APPROPRIATIONS FROM AN AGENCY FAILING TO CORRECT CERTAIN DEFICIENCIES OR VIOLATIONS CITED IN INTERNAL OPERATIONS; TO AMEND SECTION 10-1-140 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO RESPONSIBILITY FOR PERSONAL PROPERTY OF STATE DEPARTMENTS, AGENCIES, AND INSTITUTIONS, SO AS TO PLACE RESPONSIBILITY FOR SUCH PROPERTY IN THE AGENCY HEAD REGARDLESS OF THE NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES; TO AMEND THE 1976 CODE BY ADDING SECTION 8-15-65 SO AS TO REQUIRE ANNUAL APPROPRIATIONS BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY FOR SALARY SUPPLEMENTS FOR COUNTY CLERKS OF COURT, PROBATE JUDGES, SHERIFFS, REGISTERS OF MESNE CONVEYANCES, COUNTY AUDITORS, AND COUNTY TREASURERS TO PROVIDE FOR THE MANNER OF PAYMENT OF THESE SUPPLEMENTS, AND TO PROVIDE FOR A REDUCTION IN THE DISTRIBUTION DUE A COUNTY UNDER THE STATE AID TO SUBDIVISIONS ACT WHEN A COUNTY REDUCES THE SALARY OR REDUCES THE OFFICE FUNDING FOR ANY OF THESE OFFICES; TO AMEND SECTION 2-1-180 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO ADJOURNMENT OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY, SO AS TO CHANGE THE DATE FOR THE MANDATORY ADJOURNMENT OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY FROM THE FIRST THURSDAY IN JUNE TO THE SECOND THURSDAY IN MAY, AND PROVIDE THAT IN ANY YEAR THAT THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES FAILS TO GIVE THIRD READING TO THE APPROPRIATIONS BILL BY MARCH FIFTEENTH, RATHER THAN MARCH THIRTY-FIRST, THE DATE OF ADJOURNMENT IS EXTENDED BY ONE STATEWIDE DAY FOR EACH STATEWIDE DAY AFTER MARCH FIFTEENTH, RATHER THAN MARCH THIRTY-FIRST, THAT THE HOUSE FAILS TO GIVE THE BILL THIRD READING; EXTENDING THE REPAYMENT SCHEDULE OF SUMS TRANSFERRED TO THE CITY OF CHARLESTON FROM FUNDS SET ASIDE FOR THE PATRIOT'S POINT AUTHORITY; TO AMEND SECTION 59-104-20 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE PALMETTO FELLOWS SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAM, SO AS TO DELETE THE REQUIREMENT THAT THE INSTITUTION IN WHICH THE STUDENT IS ENROLLED SHALL PROVIDE ONE-HALF OF THE SCHOLARSHIP; TO AMEND ACT 518 OF 1980, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO, AMONG OTHER THINGS, THE UNIVERSITY OF SOUTH CAROLINA ATHLETIC FACILITIES REVENUE BONDS, SO AS TO REVISE DEFINITIONS, DELETE ISSUANCE APPROVAL REQUIREMENTS BY THE STATE BUDGET AND CONTROL BOARD, EXTEND THE BOND AUTHORITY TO RECONSTRUCTION, RENOVATION, AND EQUIPPING OF ATHLETIC FACILITIES, CONFORM PROVISIONS TO REVISED DEFINITIONS, DELETE THE REQUIREMENT THAT ALL HOME FOOTBALL GAMES BE PLAYED AT THE UNIVERSITY'S STADIUM, TO ALLOW THE ISSUE OF TERM BONDS, AND DELETE SPECIFIC REQUIREMENTS RELATING TO BOND MATURITIES, TO EXTEND THE TAX EXEMPTIONS OF SUCH BONDS AND DELETE AN OBSOLETE REFERENCE, TO DELETE LIMITATIONS AND OBSOLETE PROVISIONS RELATING TO THE SALE OF THESE BONDS, TO MAKE VOLUNTARY THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A BOND RESERVE FUND AND TO ALLOW OTHER PROCEEDS TO BE CREDITED TO THE DEBT SERVICE FUND OR BOND RESERVE FUND, AND TO AUTHORIZE TRUSTEES ADDITIONAL POWERS WITH RESPECT TO THE USE OF PROCEEDS OF THESE BONDS; TO AMEND TITLE 59 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO EDUCATION, BY ADDING CHAPTER 147 ENACTING THE HIGHER EDUCATION REVENUE BOND ACT AUTHORIZING FOUR-YEAR PUBLIC INSTITUTIONS OF HIGHER EDUCATION TO ISSUE REVENUE BONDS TO FINANCE IMPROVEMENTS AND EQUIPMENT AND TO PROVIDE THE TERMS AND CONDITIONS UNDER WHICH THE BONDS MAY BE ISSUED; TO AMEND SECTION 59-1-452, AS AMENDED, OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE PUBLIC SCHOOL EMPLOYEE COST SAVINGS PROGRAM, SECTION 59-6-12, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE EDUCATION IMPROVEMENT ACT SELECT COMMITTEE, SECTION 59-6-30, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE ANNUAL ASSESSMENT OF THE EDUCATION IMPROVEMENT ACT, SECTION 59-18-15, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE DEFINED MINIMUM PROGRAM AND OTHER PROGRAMS, AND SECTION 59-141-10, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO NATIONAL EDUCATION GOALS, SO AS TO DELETE REFERENCES TO THE BUSINESS-EDUCATION PARTNERSHIP FOR EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION AND ITS BUSINESS-EDUCATION SUBCOMMITTEE; AND TO REPEAL SECTIONS 59-6-15, 59-6-16, 59-6-17, AND 59-6-20, RELATING TO THE BUSINESS-EDUCATION PARTNERSHIP, THE BUSINESS-EDUCATION SUBCOMMITTEE, AND SPECIFIC DUTIES AND POWERS THEREOF; TO ENACT THE "SOUTH CAROLINA CHILDREN'S EDUCATION ENDOWMENT ACT OF 1996" INCLUDING PROVISIONS TO AMEND CHAPTER 143, TITLE 59 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE EDUCATIONAL ASSISTANCE ENDOWMENT FUND, SO AS TO CHANGE THE NAME OF THE FUND TO THE CHILDREN'S EDUCATION ENDOWMENT FUND, DELETE THE AUTHORITY TO ACCUMULATE MONIES IN THE FUND, FURTHER PROVIDE FOR THE MANNER IN WHICH SUCH FUNDS SHALL BE USED, AND TO REQUIRE THAT BEGINNING WITH THE 1996-97 FISCAL YEAR, MONIES IN THE FUND MUST BE DISTRIBUTED QUARTERLY; TO AMEND TITLE 59, RELATING TO EDUCATION, BY ADDING CHAPTER 144 SO AS TO PROVIDE FOR A PUBLIC SCHOOL FACILITIES ASSISTANCE PROGRAM WHICH ESTABLISHES THE MANNER IN WHICH FUNDS AVAILABLE FROM THE CHILDREN'S EDUCATION ENDOWMENT FUND SHALL BE USED TO CONSTRUCT AND RENOVATE PUBLIC SCHOOL FACILITIES AND FOR OTHER EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES; AND TO AMEND ACT 145 OF 1995, RELATING TO THE 1995-96 GENERAL APPROPRIATIONS ACT, SO AS TO REVISE THE MANNER IN WHICH FUNDS OF THE CHILDREN'S EDUCATION ENDOWMENT FUND ARE DISTRIBUTED FOR FISCAL YEAR 1995-96; TO AMEND SECTION 14-1-200 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE SALARIES OF SUPREME COURT JUSTICES, JUDGES OF THE COURT OF APPEALS, CIRCUIT COURT, AND FAMILY COURT, AND CIRCUIT SOLICITORS, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT CIRCUIT SOLICITORS SHALL RECEIVE A SALARY NOT LESS THAN THE SALARY OF JUDGES OF THE COURT OF APPEALS AND CIRCUIT COURT JUDGES; TO AMEND SECTION 16-3-26, AS AMENDED, OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE NOTICE THE SOLICITOR MUST GIVE TO A DEFENSE ATTORNEY WHEN HE SEEKS THE DEATH PENALTY, THE APPOINTMENT OF ATTORNEYS, AND THE PROVISION OF INVESTIGATIVE, EXPERT, OR OTHER SERVICES TO INDIGENT PERSONS FACING THE DEATH PENALTY, SO AS TO REVISE THE PROVISIONS RELATING TO THE PAYMENT OF FEES AND EXPENSES ASSOCIATED WITH THE DEFENSE OF CERTAIN INDIGENTS, AND THE QUALIFICATIONS AND APPOINTMENT OF ATTORNEYS HANDLING DEATH PENALTY CASES; TO AMEND SECTION 17-3-30, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO INDIGENTS WHO HAVE BEEN APPOINTED LEGAL COUNSEL, CERTAIN FEES THESE PERSONS ARE REQUIRED TO PAY FOR LEGAL SERVICES, AND FUNDS SET ASIDE FOR THE DEFENSE OF INDIGENT, SO AS TO REVISE THE PROCESS OF COLLECTING FEES FROM INDIGENTS WHO HAVE BEEN APPOINTED LEGAL COUNSEL; TO AMEND SECTION 17-3-330, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO DUTIES OF THE OFFICE OF INDIGENT DEFENSE, SO AS TO PROVIDE FOR THE DISTRIBUTION OF UNEXPENDED FUNDS AND THE QUALIFICATIONS A PERSON SHALL POSSESS TO BE APPOINTED BY THE COURT AND COMPENSATED BY THE DEATH PENALTY TRIAL FUND; TO PROVIDE THAT THE DUTIES, FUNCTIONS, AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE DIVISION OF SECURITIES OF THE OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE ARE DEVOLVED UPON THE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE ON JULY 1, 1996, TO PROVIDE THAT THE ATTORNEY GENERAL SHALL ADMINISTER THE SOUTH CAROLINA UNIFORM SECURITIES ACT AND SHALL SERVE EX OFFICIO AS THE SECURITIES COMMISSIONER, TO PROVIDE THAT ALL PERSONNEL, APPROPRIATIONS, AND FULL-TIME EQUIVALENT POSITIONS OF THE DIVISION OF SECURITIES ALSO SHALL BE TRANSFERRED TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE ON JULY 1, 1996; TO AMEND THE 1976 CODE BY ADDING SECTION 35-1-220 SO AS TO ALLOW THE ATTORNEY GENERAL TO RETAIN A PORTION OF FEES AND PROCEEDS IN SETTLEMENT OF VIOLATIONS TO OFFSET COSTS OF ADMINISTERING THE UNIFORM SECURITIES ACT; AND TO AMEND SECTIONS 35-1-20 AND 35-1-30 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE UNIFORM SECURITIES ACT, SO AS TO REFLECT THE ATTORNEY GENERAL AS BEING THE SECURITIES COMMISSIONER WHO SHALL ADMINISTER THE ACT; TO PROVIDE THAT THE DUTIES, FUNCTIONS, AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE DIVISION OF PUBLIC CHARITIES OF THE OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF STATE ARE DEVOLVED UPON THE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE ON JULY 1, 1996; TO TRANSFER ALL PERSONNEL, APPROPRIATIONS, AND FULL-TIME EQUIVALENT POSITIONS OF THE DIVISION OF PUBLIC CHARITIES TO THE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE ON JULY 1, 1996; TO PROVIDE THAT THE ATTORNEY GENERAL SHALL ADMINISTER THE "SOUTH CAROLINA SOLICITATION OF CHARITABLE FUNDS ACT"; AND TO AMEND SECTIONS 33-56-20, 33-56-30, 33-56-40, 33-56-50, 33-56-60, 33-56-70, 33-56-80, 33-56-90, 33-56-100, 33-56-110, 33-56-120, 33-56-130, 33-56-140, 33-56-150, 33-56-160, AND 33-56-190 OF THE 1976 CODE, ALL RELATING TO THE SOLICITATION OF CHARITABLE FUNDS, SO AS TO DELETE REFERENCES TO THE SECRETARY OF STATE AND REFLECT THE ATTORNEY GENERAL AND HIS OFFICE AS THE OFFICIAL AND THE AGENCY TO ADMINISTER THE PROVISIONS OF THE "SOUTH CAROLINA SOLICITATION OF CHARITABLE FUNDS ACT" AND TO ALLOW THE ATTORNEY GENERAL TO RETAIN A PORTION OF ADMINISTRATIVE FINES TO OFFSET THE EXPENSES OF ENFORCEMENT; TO AMEND THE 1976 CODE BY ADDING SECTION 23-6-60 SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT REVENUES COLLECTED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY MUST BE CREDITED TO A SEPARATE FUND IN THE STATE TREASURY FOR THE USE OF THE DEPARTMENT, TO PROVIDE FOR TRANSITION FUNDING, TO PROVIDE AN UNLIMITED CARRY FORWARD, AND TO ESTABLISH THE DEPARTMENT'S FUNDING AS AN ANNUAL BASE APPROPRIATION BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY; TO AMEND THE 1976 CODE BY ADDING SECTION 23-6-35 SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY MAY CHARGE AND COLLECT FEES IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION 30-4-30 OF THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT FOR PROVIDING COPIES OF CERTAIN RECORDS MAINTAINED BY THE DEPARTMENT AND TO PROVIDE FOR THE USE OF REVENUES GENERATED BY THIS PROVISION; TO AMEND SECTION 30-4-40, AS AMENDED, OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO MATTERS THAT ARE EXEMPT FROM DISCLOSURE UNDER THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY MAY SELL CERTAIN INFORMATION TO CORPORATIONS WHICH ARE LICENSED TO DO BUSINESS IN THIS STATE; TO AMEND THE 1976 CODE BY ADDING SECTIONS 4-9-142, 5-21-70, 6-1-60, AND 59-73-35 SO AS TO IMPOSE LIMITS ON CERTAIN PROPERTY TAX MILLAGE AND FEE INCREASES IMPOSED BY COUNTIES AND MUNICIPALITIES, AND ON THE USE OF NEW REVENUE SOURCES FOR OPERATING PURPOSES AND TO PROVIDE EXCEPTIONS, TO IMPOSE LIMITS ON CERTAIN PROPERTY TAX MILLAGE INCREASES IMPOSED BY SPECIAL PURPOSE OR PUBLIC SERVICE DISTRICTS AND ON THE USE OF NEW REVENUE SOURCES FOR OPERATING PURPOSES AND TO PROVIDE EXCEPTIONS; AND TO IMPOSE LIMITS ON CERTAIN PROPERTY TAX MILLAGE INCREASES IMPOSED BY THE GOVERNING BODIES AUTHORIZED BY LAW TO LEVY SCHOOL TAXES AND ON THE USE OF NEW REVENUE SOURCES FOR OPERATING PURPOSES AND TO PROVIDE EXCEPTIONS; TO MAKE THE PAYMENT OF REIMBURSEMENTS FOR HOMESTEAD EXEMPTIONS CONDITIONAL ON THESE ENTITIES CERTIFYING IN WRITING TO THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL THAT THEY HAVE MET THESE REQUIREMENTS; AND TO AMEND SECTION 11-11-440, RELATING TO THE PROHIBITION ON GENERAL TAX INCREASES OR NEW GENERAL TAXES AS PERMANENT PROVISIONS IN APPROPRIATIONS BILLS, SO AS TO REQUIRE THE SEPARATE LEGISLATION REQUIRED FOR THESE PURPOSES TO PASS EACH HOUSE OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY BY AT LEAST A MAJORITY OF TWO-THIRDS OF THE MEMBERS; TO AMEND SECTION 11-11-330 OF THE 1976 CODE, RELATING TO THE STATE PROPERTY TAX RELIEF FUND, SO AS TO PROVIDE FOR A SPECIFIC REIMBURSEMENT TO SCHOOL DISTRICTS FOR REVENUES LOST TO THE HOMESTEAD EXEMPTION; AND TO AMEND SECTION 12-37-251, RELATING TO THE HOMESTEAD PROPERTY TAX EXEMPTION FROM SCHOOL OPERATING TAXES, SO AS TO PROVIDE FOR AN EXEMPTION AMOUNT OF ONE HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS OF FAIR MARKET VALUE AND USING A BASE YEAR MILLAGE RATE EQUAL TO THE SCHOOL OPERATING MILLAGE FOR THE 1996-97 SCHOOL YEAR.
H. 4639 -- Rep. Harrison: A BILL TO AMEND SECTION 17-3-60, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO THE PROCEDURES FOR ESTABLISHING PUBLIC DEFENDER SYSTEMS IN COUNTIES, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT ASSISTANT PUBLIC DEFENDERS ARE NOT REQUIRED TO RESIDE IN THE COUNTIES IN WHICH THEY SERVE.
Referred to Committee on Judiciary.
S. 991 -- Senator Saleeby: A BILL TO AMEND SECTION 38-55-530, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO DEFINITIONS UNDER THE "OMNIBUS INSURANCE FRAUD AND REPORTING IMMUNITY ACT", SO AS TO DELETE REFERENCE TO "DIVISION OF MOTOR VEHICLES" IN THE DEFINITION OF "AUTHORIZED AGENCY", ADD THE SPECIFIC NAMES OF CERTAIN STATE AGENCIES, AND INCLUDE ALL OTHER STATE BOARDS, COMMISSIONS, AND AGENCIES IN THAT DEFINITION; AND TO AMEND SECTION 38-55-570, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE "OMNIBUS INSURANCE FRAUD AND REPORTING IMMUNITY ACT" AND NOTIFICATION TO THE INSURANCE FRAUD DIVISION OF THE OFFICE OF THE STATE ATTORNEY GENERAL OF KNOWLEDGE OR BELIEF OF FALSE STATEMENTS OR MISREPRESENTATIONS, SO AS TO DELETE REFERENCE TO THE "MOTOR VEHICLE DIVISION".
Referred to Committee on Labor, Commerce and Industry.
S. 1119 -- Senator Alexander: A JOINT RESOLUTION TO PROVIDE THAT FOR THE 1995-96 SCHOOL YEAR, THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF OCONEE COUNTY IS EXEMPTED FROM THE REQUIREMENT THAT SCHOOL DAYS MISSED MUST BE MADE UP AS A RESULT OF COMPLICATIONS RESULTING FROM SNOW OR ICE OR OTHER EXTREME WEATHER CONDITIONS.
On motion of Rep. SANDIFER, with unanimous consent, the Joint Resolution was ordered placed on the Calendar without reference.
S. 1127 -- Senators Cork and Washington: A BILL TO AMEND SECTION 7-7-110, AS AMENDED, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO VOTING PRECINCTS IN BEAUFORT COUNTY, SO AS TO REVISE THESE PRECINCTS AND DESIGNATE A MAP NUMBER ON WHICH THE LINES OF THESE PRECINCTS ARE DELINEATED.
On motion of Rep. RICHARDSON, with unanimous consent, the Bill was ordered placed on the Calendar without reference.
The following was introduced:
H. 4640 -- Rep. Cotty: A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION CONGRATULATING SPRING VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL OF RICHLAND COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT TWO FOR BEING SELECTED A "BLUE RIBBON SCHOOL" BY THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION.
The Concurrent Resolution was agreed to and ordered sent to the Senate.
The following was introduced:
H. 4641 -- Rep. Cotty: A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION CONGRATULATING SUMMIT PARKWAY MIDDLE SCHOOL OF RICHLAND COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT TWO FOR BEING SELECTED A "BLUE RIBBON SCHOOL" BY THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION.
The Concurrent Resolution was agreed to and ordered sent to the Senate.
The roll call of the House of Representatives was taken resulting as follows.
Allison Anderson Askins Bailey Baxley Breeland Brown, H. Brown, J. Brown, T. Cain Canty Carnell Cato Cave Chamblee Clyburn Cobb-Hunter Cooper Cotty Cromer Dantzler Davenport Delleney Easterday Elliott Felder Fulmer Gamble Govan Hallman Harrell Harris, J. Harrison Haskins Herdklotz Hines, J. Hines, M. Hodges Howard Hutson Inabinett Jaskwhich Jennings Keegan Kelley Keyserling Kinon Kirsh Klauber Knotts Koon Lanford Law Lee Limehouse Littlejohn Lloyd Loftis Marchbanks Martin Mason McAbee McCraw McKay McMahand McTeer Meacham Moody-Lawrence Neal Neilson Phillips Rhoad Rice Richardson Riser Robinson Sandifer Scott Seithel Sharpe Sheheen Shissias Simrill Smith, R. Spearman Stille Stuart Thomas Townsend Tripp Trotter Tucker Vaughn Waldrop Walker Wells Whatley Whipper, L. Whipper, S. White Wilder Wilkes Wilkins Williams Witherspoon Wofford Worley Wright Young Young-Brickell
I came in after the roll call and was present for the Session on Tuesday, February 20.
Richard M. Quinn, Jr. Doug Smith L. Hunter Limbaugh Timothy F. Rogers Alma W. Byrd Eugene C. Stoddard C. Alex Harvin III Grady A. Brown Joseph T. McElveen, Jr.
LEAVES OF ABSENCE
The SPEAKER granted Rep. P. HARRIS a leave of absence for the week due to eye surgery.
The SPEAKER granted Rep. KENNEDY a leave of absence for the day due to the death of his mother.
The SPEAKER granted Rep. BOAN a temporary leave of absence due to illness in the family.
Rep. KLAUBER, on behalf of the Greenwood Delegation presented to the House the Lander University Men's Tennis Team, winners of the 1995 NCAA Division II Championship, their coach and other school officials.
The following Bill and Joint Resolution were taken up, read the third time, and ordered sent to the Senate.
H. 4609 -- Reps. Koon, Knotts, Gamble, Riser and Wright: A BILL TO AMEND ACT 218 OF 1993, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE ELECTION OF MEMBERS OF BOARDS OF TRUSTEES OF SCHOOL DISTRICTS IN LEXINGTON COUNTY IN NONPARTISAN ELECTIONS, SO AS TO REVISE THE DATES WHEN NOTICES OF CANDIDACY MAY BE FILED WITH THE COUNTY ELECTION COMMISSION, AND TO AMEND ACT 176 OF 1995, RELATING TO THE ELECTION OF MEMBERS OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES OF LEXINGTON COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT 1, SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT THE FILING PERIOD FOR PERSONS DESIRING TO FILE WRITTEN NOTICES OF CANDIDACY SHALL BE AS PROVIDED IN ACT 218 OF 1993.
H. 4611 -- Reps. Hodges and Boan: A JOINT RESOLUTION TO PROVIDE THAT THE SCHOOL DAY OF AUGUST 28, 1995, MISSED BY STUDENTS OF INDIAN LAND ELEMENTARY SCHOOL AND INDIAN LAND HIGH SCHOOL OF THE LANCASTER COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT FOR SCHOOL YEAR 1995-96 WHEN THE SCHOOLS WERE CLOSED DUE TO FLOODING IS EXEMPTED FROM THE MAKE-UP REQUIREMENT OF THE DEFINED MINIMUM PLAN THAT FULL SCHOOL DAYS MISSED DUE TO EXTREME WEATHER OR OTHER CIRCUMSTANCES BE MADE UP.
The following Bill and Joint Resolution were taken up, read the second time, and ordered to a third reading:
H. 4625 -- Reps. Phillips and McCraw: A BILL TO AMEND ACT 587 OF 1992, RELATING TO THE ELECTION OF MEMBERS OF THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES OF CHEROKEE COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT 1, SO AS TO REVISE THE DATES OF THE FILING PERIOD WHEN CANDIDATES MAY FILE WRITTEN DECLARATIONS OF CANDIDACY.
H. 4626 -- Reps. Fleming and Wilder: A JOINT RESOLUTION TO PROVIDE THAT THE SCHOOL DAYS OF JANUARY 9 AND 12, 1996, MISSED BY STUDENTS OF THE UNION COUNTY SCHOOL DISTRICT FOR SCHOOL YEAR 1995-96 WHEN THE SCHOOLS WERE CLOSED DUE TO SNOW AND ICE CONDITIONS ARE EXEMPTED FROM THE MAKE-UP REQUIREMENT OF THE DEFINED MINIMUM PLAN THAT FULL SCHOOL DAYS MISSED DUE TO EXTREME WEATHER OR OTHER CIRCUMSTANCES BE MADE UP.
Rep. CATO moved to adjourn debate upon the following Joint Resolution until Wednesday, February 21, which was adopted.
H. 4471 -- Reps. Cato, Vaughn, Easterday, Tripp and Rice: A JOINT RESOLUTION TO PROVIDE FOR A REFERENDUM TO BE HELD AT THE SAME TIME AS THE 1996 GENERAL ELECTION TO DETERMINE WHETHER OR NOT THE QUALIFIED ELECTORS OF THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF GREENVILLE COUNTY FAVOR SUBDIVIDING THE DISTRICT INTO THREE OR MORE SEPARATE SCHOOL DISTRICTS AND REQUIRING THE CHAIRMAN OF THE GREENVILLE COUNTY LEGISLATIVE DELEGATION TO SUBMIT A PLAN OF SUBDIVISION DEVELOPED BY THE DELEGATION TO THE QUALIFIED ELECTORS OF THE DISTRICT IN 1998 FOR THEIR APPROVAL IF THE RESULTS OF THE 1996 REFERENDUM ARE IN FAVOR OF SUBDIVIDING THE DISTRICT.
The following Bill was taken up.
H. 4354 -- Reps. Robinson, Walker, Allison, D. Smith, Simrill and Kirsh: A BILL TO AMEND SECTION 23-28-70, AS AMENDED, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO RESERVE POLICE OFFICERS' DUTIES, SO AS TO NOT REQUIRE A RESERVE POLICE OFFICER TO BE ACCOMPANIED BY A FULL-TIME CERTIFIED SOUTH CAROLINA POLICE OFFICER, AND TO REQUIRE A RESERVE POLICE OFFICER TO BE IN PROXIMATE CONTACT WITH THE FULL-TIME OFFICER TO WHOM HE IS ASSIGNED.
The Medical, Military, Public and Municipal Affairs Committee proposed the following Amendment No. 1 (Doc Name P:\amend\DKA\3517CM.96), which was adopted.
Amend the bill, as and if amended, by striking all after the enacting words and inserting:
/SECTION 1. Section 23-28-70 of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 85 of 1995, is further amended to read:
"Section 23-28-70. (A) Reserves shall serve and function as law enforcement officers only on specific orders and directions of the chief or sheriff. To maintain status, reserves shall maintain a minimum logged service time of twenty hours
per each month or sixty hours per each quarter.
While performing in any capacity as a reserve, a reserve police officer at all times must be accompanied by a full-time certified South Carolina police officer. Each reserve must be in proximate contact, by radio or another device, with the full-time officer to whom he is assigned.
(C) A person appointed as an auxiliary or reserve police officer after January 1, 1996, shall perform his duties while accompanied by a full-time, certified South Carolina police officer or deputy sheriff for a minimum of two hundred forty hours and with the approval of the chief or sheriff before he may work as provided in this section. Reserve or auxiliary officers serving before January 1, 1996, and who have at least two hundred forty hours of logged service time are exempt from this provision.
(D) Reserves shall
in no case not assume full-time duties of law enforcement officers without complying with all requirements for full-time officers.
(E) Each department utilizing reserves shall have one full-time officer as coordinator-supervisor who must be responsible directly to the chief or sheriff."
SECTION 2. Section 23-28-20(A) of the 1976 Code, as last amended by Act 85 of 1995, is further amended to read:
"(A) The chief with the approval of the governing body or its chief operating officer or sheriff may appoint
such the number of reserve police officers as may be needed but not exceeding the number of regular full-time officers of his department. The number of full-time officers may not be decreased because of the institution or expansion of a reserve force. Each period of time reserves serve must be determined and specified by the chief or sheriff in writing. The powers and duties of reserves must be prescribed by the chief or sheriff and they are subject to removal by him at any time."
SECTION 3. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor./
Amend title to conform.
Rep. ASKINS explained the amendment.
The amendment was then adopted.
The Bill, as amended, was read the second time and ordered to third reading.
Rep. H. BROWN moved that when the House adjourns it adjourn to meet at 11:00 A.M. tomorrow, which was agreed to.
The House stood at ease subject to the call of Chair.
At 12:29 P.M. the House resumed, the SPEAKER in the Chair.
At 12:30 P.M. the Senate appeared in the Hall of the House.
The President of the Senate called the Joint Assembly to order and announced that it had convened under the terms of a Concurrent Resolution adopted by both Houses.
The Reading Clerk of the House read the following Concurrent Resolution:
H. 4595 -- Reps. Wilkins and Harrison: A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION TO INVITE THE CHIEF JUSTICE OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA SUPREME COURT, THE HONORABLE ERNEST A. FINNEY, JR., TO ADDRESS THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY IN JOINT SESSION ON THE STATE OF THE JUDICIARY AT 12:30 P.M. ON TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 20, 1996.
Chief Justice Ernest A. Finney, Jr. and distinguished party were escorted to the rostrum by Senators Leventis, Courtney, Washington and Holland and Representatives TUCKER, KLAUBER, GOVAN and THOMAS.
The President of the Senate introduced Chief Justice Finney.
Chief Justice Finney addressed the Joint Assembly as follows:
"Mr. President, Mr. Speaker, Members of the General Assembly, other officials, members of the Judiciary, and honored guests... 20 years ago, your speaker was a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives and when I assumed the responsibility of a Circuit Judge, I thought it was probably the most awesome responsibility that I would ever assume. I tell you today, that I am having second thoughts about that because to describe in detail so that you would understand and be supportive of our mission, the budget and the concerns of the Judiciary of this State in a reasonable period of time before lunch, it is even more awesome a task. Last March I met with you and at that time, I outlined before you and my fellow South Carolinians the state of the judicial branch of South Carolina government and shared my vision for its future. I also described the roles which I envisioned were necessary for the executive branch, the legislature, the citizens of this State, and judicial system personnel to play in making our system more responsive to its mission of effectively and efficiently administering justice. Personally, on behalf of the Supreme Court, and the entire judicial branch, I want to thank you for your support, and particularly for approving the major portions of last year's budgetary request. I appreciate very much the cooperative and professional manner in which I have been received by members of these Bodies and by officials of the executive branch as we attempted to keep open the lines of communication throughout the year. In my first State of the Judiciary message, I told you that our courts were overextended, understaffed, and overwhelmed by the sheer volume of cases. Despite the fact that our judges, and other judicial branch personnel have continued to perform admirably under difficult circumstances, I am unable to report today that a miracle has occurred during the past year. So this branch has already bottomed out financially by the time of the most recent rounds of state imposed fiscal austerity. Your judicial branch went into a state of crisis prematurely over a period of decades. By the fiscal year 1995-96, we were operating with too few judges and insufficient travel funds to make full use of the judges we have. More court has been scheduled, but staffing the courts with court reporters meant transcripts were delayed because of the shortage of court reporters necessitated by constant in court assignment of every available reporter. The number of other staff and support personnel remain reasonably constant during that period of time. By the time of last year's State of the Judiciary message, we found ourselves with Circuit and Family Court dockets literally out of control. Added to the previous deluge of cases, recent legislation to combat crime was causing dockets to spiral out of control. During 1995, our Circuit and Family Court judges disposed of 251,000 cases. As of December 31, 1995, there were 136,484 cases pending in the Circuit and Family Courts, an increase of over 5,552. Obviously, those figures indicate that the cases are not moving through the system at an acceptable rate. Staffing is still less than adequate. Personnel morale is suffering. Technology is lagging. And, public consternation indicates either our inability to effectively articulate the gravity of our problems or their intolerance of our pace in crafting solutions. However, I can report to you that we are beginning to see the first fruits of our collective efforts to enhance this state's judicial system. I sense a heightened awareness on the part of citizens, and what appears to be an increased receptiveness to suggestions regarding the time factors and costs involved in fashioning remedies. I am especially grateful for the insight and vision you have demonstrated by the passage last week of a supplemental appropriation for the judicial branch. These funds will enable us to maintain operations for the remainder of this fiscal year and proceed with partial implementation of programs that were authorized in our fiscal year 1995-96 appropriations, but which had to be deferred. A substantial portion of our budget consists of personnel costs and other so-called 'pass-through' funds over which we have no control or discretion. Therefore, the gubernatorial veto of approximately 1.4 million dollars from that budget forced us to defer filling the nine new judgeships, delay implementation of the alternative dispute resolution pilot project, and to curtail other vital programs. The supplemental appropriations bill will enable us to proceed with the following programs, alternate dispute resolutions. March 15, 1996, has been selected as the start-up date for South Carolina's two-year experiment with court-ordered ADR. The Circuit and Family courts of Richland and Florence counties have been chosen as representative sites and they will hopefully furnish us reliable data indicating the availability and the feasibility of ADR in our court system. The nine new judges which were elected last week will enable us to add three new judges each to the Family Court, the Circuit Court, and to the Court of Appeals. Our Family Court judges are traumatized by the escalation of divorce controversies, interminable custody disputes, staggering juvenile criminal matters, and soaring numbers of cases which involve clients of the Department of Social Services. The addition of three judges will at least stem the rising tide of Family Court cases and, hopefully, provide the opportunity for troubled individuals and problematic families to come before the court without excessive delay and get a just and fair resolution of their problem. The new Circuit Court judges will be rotated to counties with the heavier dockets. Among the immediate benefits will be the earlier disposition of cases involving repeat offenders and defendants accused of committing subsequent crimes while out on bond from an earlier arrest. We feel that these Circuit judges will make the difference between state civil dockets that are stagnated with aging cases and civil dockets that are at least manageable. The three Appeals Court judges will allow the formation of a third panel. Last year, the Court of Appeals issued 498 opinions, and 252 cases were pending as the end of 1995. The additional judges will permit that court to increase its case disposition rate by at least one-third. Expanding the Court of Appeals will also facilitate another phase of our plan for a more efficient and effective appellate process. The Chief Justice serves as the chief administrative officer of the judicial branch, and ministerial functions consume an inordinate amount of time and energy. The Chief Justice also sits as one of the five-member Supreme Court which shares with the Court of Appeals the remaining portion of the state's civil and criminal appellate case load. The Supreme Court disposed of 557 cases and 4,608 motions in 1995. The Supreme Court also hears appeals from post-conviction relief proceedings, grievance and disciplinary appeals, and the five classes of appeals mandated by the constitution and statutes. The current plan provides for the Supreme Court to become a Court of Certiorari, thereby enabling that court to more effectively fulfill its constitutionally delegated functions of establishing legal parameters and setting the course of law in a more thoughtful, thorough and deliberate manner. The new proposal provides for post-conviction relief appeals to remain in the Supreme Court for the immediate future. Likewise, the Supreme Court would retain jurisdiction of grievance and disciplinary matters and the five classes of statutorily and constitutionally mandated cases. Reorganization of the Appellate Courts will require procedural changes and some shifting of personnel from the Supreme Court to the Court of Appeals, as well as some additional space. A contract has been let for renovations of the Calhoun building with a projected completion date of May 1, 1996. In addition, we are taking innovative methods to improve the flow on the civil and criminal side of our court. One of the examples on the civil side is the adr study mentioned earlier and is designed to produce reliable indicators of whether or not court-ordered arbitration and mediation would be fully implemented as a means of case management. Another example on the civil side has been settlement week. Several counties are utilizing settlement weeks to manage their case dockets. During these designated weeks, a mediator is available to assist parties in resolving disputes before and after lawsuits have been filed. On the criminal side, the South Carolina Bar Committee studying ways to relieve overcrowded dockets has forwarded its report and proposals on criminal docketing in South Carolina. The Supreme Court has also received recommendations on criminal docketing from the Circuit Court Judges Advisory Committee. We are considering these proposals for use on a trial basis in the Circuit Court. Another idea floating around has been differentiated case management as another means of relieving docket congestion at the Circuit Court level, differentiated case management is being tested in the sixteenth judicial circuit with the endorsement of the solicitor and the approval of the Circuit judges. DCM provides a mechanism for identifying and processing each case based upon the amount of time and judicial system resources required for a particular case, as opposed to having cases automatically 'wait in line' for disposition. We have heard and read much about attorneys and grievance discipline. In March we expect to release a report on our study of the grievance and disciplinary procedures for lawyers and judges. The two major areas of immediate modification will be expediting the process with a view to permitting earlier disclosure, and closer cooperation between the Supreme Court agencies which handle grievances and the prosecutorial arm of the State Attorney General's office. An internal review of judicial branch job descriptions and compensation indicated the need for further study. We commissioned a study by the State Office of Human Resources, and that agency issued its preliminary report in late January of this year. We were pleased to note that compensation for approximately 90% of the non-judiciary employees of this branch is within the range of the state average for similar positions. But, as we suspected, roughly 10% of our personnel were significantly out of line with their state counterparts, some as much as 28% below the state average. We are now in the process of rectifying this situation. In the few moments that I will take in the remainder of your time, I am going to review our budgetary request. I fully understand that a review in this perspective is not in detail and I will once again renew my request and offer to you that at any time, you or any of you, a small group or a large group, would like to discuss the budgetary request of your Judicial department, please feel free to contact us and we will make the time available. We will make ourselves available on every Wednesday from now until the legislative session ends to have in depth discussion concerning our judicial budget request. The Judicial department's major budgetary request for fiscal year 1996-97 incorporates the immediate cost of the programs I have mentioned, each of which will require either additional personnel, expanded facilities or greater utilization of information technology. The requested funds are vital to efforts of the Judicial branch to meet constitutional mandates, to respond to the demands of our beleaguered fellow citizens, and to implement legislation enacted by the General Assembly and approved by the Governor. For example, since initial funding for the nine new judges was provided by supplemental appropriations, it is necessary to request funding again this year. For that reason, we are seeking recurring appropriations for the judges and their staffs. Additionally, one and a quarter million dollars ($1,259,217) are needed on a recurring basis to operate our Circuit and Family courts, which would restore this back to where it was in 1988-89; and approximately one million dollars ($1,156,496) to continue the planned phase-in of information technology. Approximately $200,000 has been requested to raise the Board of Commissioners on Grievance and Discipline and the Judicial Standards Commission to more acceptable levels of effectiveness. I assure you legislators of South Carolina that your Family Courts are besieged by too many cases and too few judicial resources. We are seeking 16 law clerks to provide research assistance for Family Court judges and to aid Family Court clientele by reducing the delay in disposing of cases. Just under $300,000 has been requested for eight additional Circuit and Family court reporters and three staff persons to relieve understaffing in the office of finance and personnel. Like the biblical warning that the love of money is the root of evil - in the judicial branch, the lack of money is at the root of the evils which beset us. Justice delayed is justice denied. Adequate funding will result in a more timely disposition of cases and, hopefully, lead to an abatement of court backlogs and the hardship imposed upon litigants, victims, witnesses and accused individuals who are unable to have their causes adjudicated within a reasonable period of time. The two crucial areas are sufficiency of funds and recurring appropriations. These are the cornerstones of our budgetary request for fiscal year 1996-97. If approved, we expect to move forward with these programs which incorporate the court's constitutional mandates, embody our vision, and correspond to the necessity which you and the people of South Carolina have articulated for a judicial system that is fair, effective and efficient. I challenge you to share the vision, to aspire to the spirit of nobility in us all as we strive - together - to set sterling examples of faithful stewardship and dedicated public service in the highest and best tradition of the American system of justice and responsive, responsible state government. Once again, we are indebted to you for the affirmative role you have taken in supporting the judicial branch during the past year and I solicit your continued cooperation with our efforts to enhance the effectiveness of the South Carolina judicial system and thank you for allowing me to share these moments with you. Thank you very much."
Upon the conclusion of his address, Chief Justice Finney and his escort party retired from the Chamber.
The purposes of the Joint Assembly having been accomplished, the President announced that under the terms of the Concurrent Resolution the Joint Assembly would recede from business.
The Senate accordingly retired to its Chamber.
At 12:58 P.M. the House resumed, the SPEAKER in the Chair.
Rep. H. BROWN moved that the House do now adjourn, which was adopted.
At 12:59 P.M. the House in accordance with the motion of Rep. INABINETT adjourned in memory of Susie M. Kennedy, mother of Rep. KENNEDY of Greeleyville, to meet at 11:00 A.M. tomorrow.
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