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TO AMEND SECTION 2-1-20, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO THE ELECTION DATE FOR MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, SO AS TO PROVIDE THE ELECTION DATE IS THE TUESDAY AFTER THE FIRST MONDAY IN NOVEMBER OF EVERY OTHER EVEN-NUMBERED YEAR; TO AMEND SECTION 2-1-40, RELATING TO THE TERM OF OFFICE FOR THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, SO AS TO PROVIDE THE TERM IS FOUR YEARS; TO ADD SECTION 2-1-70 SO AS TO PROVIDE THAT THE TERM OF OFFICE FOR THE SENATE IS SIX YEARS.
Whereas, the General Assembly finds that for members of the House of Representatives the two-year term of office does not allow a representative enough time in office to become a truly effective and articulate legislator who can comprehend the many complex issues facing the General Assembly; and
Whereas, the General Assembly finds that a two-year term of office creates problems in that the legislator or the candidate for that office must campaign and seek campaign funds on a continuous basis for that office from the people of the district; and
Whereas, the General Assembly finds these campaign and fund-raising activities diminish the representative's ability to concentrate on the important issues facing the State; and
Whereas, the General Assembly finds similar problems facing the Senators who represent districts almost three times larger than each House district; and
Whereas, the General Assembly further finds that in five other states the members of the House of Representatives serve a four-year term; and
Whereas, the General Assembly concludes that increasing the term of the House of Representatives to four years and of the Senate to six years would allow the legislators to concentrate on the very important issues facing the State and would ease the pressures of campaigning and campaign fund raising. Now, therefore,
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. Section 2-1-20 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 2-1-20. Representatives to the House of Representatives shall be elected from the several counties of the State at the general election to be held on Tuesday after the first Monday in November of every other even-numbered year."
SECTION 2. Section 2-1-40 of the 1976 Code is amended to read:
"Section 2-1-40. Any person otherwise qualified by law and the Constitution of this State may file as a candidate and
can be elected only in the district in which he is a resident. A person may file for only one House office. The terms term of office shall be for two is four years."
SECTION 3. The 1976 Code is amended by adding:
"Section 2-1-70. The term of office for the South Carolina Senate is six years."
SECTION 4. This act takes effect upon the signature of the Governor and is contingent on the ratification of a constitutional amendment to Sections 2, 6, and 8, Article III of the South Carolina Constitution, increasing the term of office for the House of Representatives to four years and for the Senate to six years.
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