by Ben Homeyer
During the late afternoon of February 22, 2023 the House Ways & Means Committee, chaired by Rep. Bruce Bannister (R-Greenville), met to debate and vote on the subcommittee allocations for the FY 2023-2024 budget. The committee allocated $700M to the General Reserve Fund, and after the required $795M allocated to the tax relief fund, this was the single largest appropriation in this version of the budget. The house will take up the budget the week of March 13th.
This year’s budget has a heavy emphasis on infrastructure, economic development, workforce development, healthcare, and education. Legislators continue to focus and prioritize funding for roads and bridges. The committee allocated two large nonrecurring appropriations for roads and bridges. $200M to SCDOT for bridge repairs and replacement and a combination of recurring and nonrecurring funds of $8M for litter. The budget also includes $250M in nonrecurring funds to accelerate County Transportation Committee projects. SCDOT has requested a total of $1B over the next five years, further solidifying the long-term plans to fix South Carolina’s bridges.
The Department of Commerce was appropriated $200M for economic development infrastructure. It was a strategic allocation in the year’s budget to identify, acquire, and develop sites for large economic development projects. SC State Aeronautics was allocated $50M for commercial airport projects.
There is going to be ample opportunities over the next year for a significant amount of concrete to be poured in the state
The SCDOT had a state of the DOT meeting for Senators last week. It was very similar to what was presented to the House in January. I copy of their presentation can be found below. (You may want to imbed it differently)
Meetings with stakeholders, legislators, and interested parties continue to happen with SCDHEC in regard to the mining act and regulations. SCDHEC maintains that the mining act is not going to be opened at this time, but they are reviewing regulations and fees. We remain at the table and continue to work to ensure that aggregate producers are not adversely affected by overly burdensome and restrictive regulations.