South Carolina House of Representatives
James H. "Jay" Lucas, Speaker of the House
OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND CONSTITUENT SERVICES
Room 212, Blatt Building, P.O. Box 11867, Columbia, S.C. 29211, (803) 734-3230
The House of Representatives amended, approved, and sent the Senate H.3020, the "SOUTH CAROLINA FETAL HEARTBEAT PROTECTION FROM ABORTION ACT". The legislation establishes a prohibition on the performance of an abortion once a fetal heartbeat is detected. Felony criminal penalties are established for performing or inducing an abortion in violation of the legislation which carry a fine of ten thousand dollars and/or imprisonment for up to two years. The legislation includes a medical emergency exception that allows a physician to perform an abortion in order to save the life of the pregnant woman or prevent her from suffering substantial and irreversible physical impairment of a major bodily function. Exceptions are also included to address instances where the pregnancy is the result of rape or incest. When any of these exceptions are applied, a physician is required to make written notations in the pregnant woman's medical records that must be maintained for at least seven years. The legislation establishes a protocol that requires abortion providers to make certain disclosures to pregnant women, perform obstetric ultrasounds and determine whether embryonic or fetal heartbeats are present, and make these available for pregnant women to see and hear. A civil cause of action is also established that allows a woman to recover damages, court costs, and reasonable attorney's fees should an abortion be performed that violates the legislation's requirements.
The House amended, approved, and sent the Senate H.4332, a bill providing for STATE GENERAL OBLIGATION ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT BOND ACT REVISIONS. The legislation adds freight transportation to the types of infrastructure that may be financed with economic development bonds and makes provisions for up to fifty million dollars in bond financing for a strategic infrastructure project, which is not subject to job creation and capital investment requirements, to assist the Department of Commerce in promoting economic development in the state by providing infrastructure that is needed by industry located in or considering locating in South Carolina.
The House amended, approved, and sent the Senate H.4256, a bill addressing FUNERAL SERVICES with provisions that include prohibiting the unlicensed conduct of funeral services, enhancing penalties for funeral services violations, and strengthening ethics provisions. The legislation also eliminates the requirement for a funeral home to have a room containing a displayed stock of at least six adult caskets and instead requires a funeral home to have the means of showing photographs or other representations of available caskets and other necessary funeral supplies.
The House amended and gave second reading approval to H.4152, a bill to accommodate the PLASTIC RECLAMATION OPERATIONS of businesses that can accept discarded plastics unsuitable for various recycling initiatives and use a gasification or pyrolysis process to heat these postuse polymers and recoverable feedstocks to break them down and convert them into such useful materials as oil, fuel, waxes, and lubricants. Solid waste policy and management provisions are revised to provide that postuse polymers and recoverable feedstocks used in pyrolysis and gasification processes are classified as recovered materials, rather than solid waste, for the purposes of regulation by the Department of Health and Environmental Control. The legislation facilitates operations that use a gasification or pyrolysis process to heat plastics derived from industrial, commercial, agricultural, or domestic activities that may contain incidental contaminants or impurities, such as paper labels or metal rings, in order to convert them to crude oil, diesel, gasoline, home heating oil or other fuels, chemicals, waxes, lubricants, chemical feedstocks, diesel and gasoline blendstocks, or other raw materials or intermediate or final products that are returned to the economic mainstream in the form of raw materials, products, or fuels. The legislation includes requirements for seventyfive percent, by weight or volume, of the recovered material stored at a facility to be recycled, sold, used, or reused during a calendar year. Any material that is accumulated speculatively and not in accordance with these requirements must be handled as solid waste.
The Committee passed out S.401, TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROJECT COSTS. This bill relates to construction in the state highway system and provides that an entity undertaking a transportation improvement project shall bear the costs related to relocating water and sewer lines within DOT's right-of-way (ROW). The bill provides the requirements for utilities to be eligible for relocation payments. Generally public utilities are grouped into two groups: (1) small utilities which have 10,000 or less water taps or sewer connections and serves a population of 30,000 or less; and (2) large utilities which have more than 10,000 water taps or sewer connections and greater than 30,000 in population. The transportation project will pay 100 percent of the relocation costs for the smaller utilities. For larger utilities, the project will pay the relocation costs but cap the amount paid by the project at no more than 4.0 percent of the original contract bid. If a small and large utility are in the same project, the cap goes to 4.5%, but the small utility has all costs covered, which is subtracted from the 4.5%; any remainder goes to cover the large utility. To be eligible for payment of the relocation costs, the public utility must meet the Transportation Improvement Project's bid and construction schedule. This involves public utilities early in the project planning and design; for the utilities, this provides an opportunity to minimize and avoid relocation costs through project design. In addition, DOT must include metrics on utility relocation in its annual accountability report.
S.293 CARRYING CONCEALED WEAPONS ON SCHOOL PROPERTY LEASED BY CHURCHES Senator Cash
Concealed weapon permit holders could carry concealable weapons on school property when it is leased by a church. Before being able to do so; however, church officials must grant permission to permit holders. This permission will only be effective when the church has access to these school properties for religious services or church-related activities.
H.4472 OPENLY CARRYING CONCEALABLE WEAPONS Rep. B. Cox
Allows concealed weapon permit holders to openly carry concealable weapons.
H.4473 SIMPLE POSSESSION OF MARIJUANA BY THE TERMINALLY ILL Rep. Mace
Legalizes the possession of twenty-eight grams, or one ounce, or less of marijuana by anyone with a terminal illness.
H.4482 HOUSING ATTAINABILITY PROTECTIONS Rep. Simrill
This bill establishes certain housing attainability protections. The legislation requires a county or municipality that intends to adopt an ordinance that may increase or decrease certain housing costs to prepare a housing impact analysis. The legislation requires a state agency that intends to promulgate an ordinance that may increase or decrease certain housing costs to prepare a housing impact analysis. The legislation includes requirements for preparing reports concerning the implementation of housing plans included in a comprehensive plan and residential development fees. The legislation requires a housing authority to prepare a comprehensive five-year state housing strategy plan.
H.4483 VSAFE PROGRAM FUNDING Rep. Funderburk
This bill provides for the entire amount of the one percent of the insurance premium tax revenues used for funding firefighters to be devoted to the "Volunteer Strategic Assistance and Fire Equipment Program" (VSAFE) which provides grants to volunteer and combination fire departments in order to protect local communities and regional response areas from incidents of fire, hazardous materials, and terrorism and provide for the safety of volunteer firefighters.