By Ben Homeyer
The S.C. House Republican Caucus recently published its 2023-2024 legislative agenda. It is grouped under what they call “the five pillars of success.” They are:
- Improve statewide economic development to ensure prosperity for all South Carolinians Remove barriers to get to work: cut red tape in occupational licensure, eliminate unnecessary permit requirements, reform LLR, stop mandates that stifle industry. Improve infrastructure: roads and bridges, site development, access to broadband, water, and sewer.
- Reform our education systems so students are better prepared for the workforce. Enact real parental choice through open enrollment, charter schools, and Education Savings Accounts..
- Limit government by implementing fiscal discipline and responsibility. Budget for people and not programs: Lower tax burden for working families. Increase reserves- operate state government with less debt, and more savings.
- Increasing personal freedom and encouraging conservative values. Defend the 2nd Amendment: ensure we remain a 2nd Amendment sanctuary state. Defend life: ban abortions on demand, make contraception for women more available. Streamline adoptions. The House and Senate debated abortion changes until two weeks ago and with no final decision it will certainly be up quickly in session.
- Prioritize public safety and make law and order a top priority. Fully fund the police: provide more resources to hire and train officers, End catch-and-release: mandate cash bail and eliminate personal recognizance bonds for violent offenders.
The incoming House Freshman met this week to begin their orientation process. This being the largest incoming class it has taken two days to start the process. The entirety of the House will meet Dec 6th and 7th to organize and deal with committee assignments. Word out of the House is that every committee chair except for LCI could be changed.
Senate Republicans plan to meet next week to discuss their agenda.
Both bodies will have multiple pre-file dates between now and the next update and we will be able to get a handle on what bills they are pushing.
We are continuing to monitor SCDHEC and the potential changes to the states mining act. We have had discussions with the agency as well as other stakeholders to work to protect our positions.