SC Legislative Update 5/11/20
By Ben Homeyer
The main purpose of the morning AccelerateSC meeting which was the protection sub-group is trying to ensure that PPE is available for all business to purchase/receive equipment as needed. Masks, gloves, gowns, etc that are needed for business to open and operate. The new https://accelerate.sc.gov/ Website has a link to where PPE can be found in SC. The group found that the small health care providers in the state are unable to procure PPE to continue operations. The protection group is still recommending that all citizens wear masks and gloves whenever they go out in public.
The resources group met this afternoon and discussed how the state is allocating the millions that are coming in to the state in Federal dollars. A lot of discussion again on Broadband and how the state may get some of those dollars to try and get broadband out to the states. All of these dollars that were being discussed were being sent to State Entities or subdivisions such as local governments, hospitals and universities. The committee is also looking at using a third party vendor to figure out how to best utilize the potential dollars and remove the Dept. of Admin from the process. The committee voted unanimously to pursue a third party vendor. The committee also stated they need to look at the UI trust fund and what must be done to ensure it is not depleted again like in the last economic downtown.
The House Small Business Group met today and spoke with LLR and DHEC about what information they are hearing and how they are able to help small business navigate the covid pandemic. The House is going to start receiving testimony next week at the groups next meeting. They then plan to meet multiple times a week to gather information.
It was discussed about how many of the regs that have been done or suspended during the state of emergency will end after the emergency is over but that the directors retain a lot of control over what can be relaxed or enforced. DHEC stated they would be able to provide guidance to close quarter businesses and what they will need to do once the order comes forth which allows them work again.
The House will be in tomorrow at noon and the Senate will have their re-opening specialty group starting at 10:30 and session at 2:00.