Home » Hotlsit: April 15

Hotlsit: April 15

Hey friends!

The countdown until the end of session begins: 4 weeks to go!

Let’s look at the status of a few bills we’ve been following.

  • Alternative Fuels Tax Credits: This bill, H.3824, incentivizes the building of electric vehicle charging infrastructure by extending a tax credit for a portion of the cost of their construction. We supported this legislation through the House, and it now sits in the Senate Finance Committee awaiting a hearing. There is still time to get this one across the finish line! If you haven’t already, contact your Senator and urge them to support this bill.
  • Transferable Development Rights: This bill, H.4996, creates a tool that lets towns and counties shift growth away from areas they want to protect and into areas that are advantageous for growth. These programs can protect open land, wetlands, farmlands, and more while increasing density, affordable housing, and efficient public services in other areas. We support this legislation, but it has not advanced out of the House Medical, Military, Public, and Municipal Affairs committee. The bill may not move this year, but I expect it to return in the next session. 
  • C-PACE: Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) legislation was introduced last year in both the House and the Senate. (H.3937 and S.542, respectively). This program will help commercial property owners install energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements to their buildings by letting these property owners finance the improvements through a voluntary tax assessment, which allows for longer repayment. This makes the improvements a much more attractive option and requires no public funding. We support this legislation, and the Senate version of the bill has crossed over to the House, where the Labor, Commerce, and Industry Committee will hold a hearing on it this week.
  • Various Energy Bills: We have talked a lot about energy this session, and it has been a roller coaster of the emotional sort. Currently, there are three omnibus energy bills sitting in the Senate as we speak:
  • S.779, the Energy Independence and Risk Reduction Act introduced by Senator Talley in 2023;
  • S.909, untitled, introduced by Senator Davis this year; and
  • H.5118, the Energy Security Act introduced by the House Speaker this year.

Each of these bills approaches our energy future differently, and each sits at a different stage of the legislative process. It seems widely acknowledged that were a bill to pass this session, it would be H.5118. In its current form, CVSC cannot support this legislation as it puts utility interests above those of the ratepayers and our environment. It is currently sitting on the Senate floor after an abbreviated committee process that has been criticized for limiting the ability of the public and non-utility stakeholders from being able to testify. Somewhat surprisingly, S.909 is scheduled for another subcommittee hearing tomorrow, and it is unclear whether the committee intends to advance this legislation as well. We could have a battle of the energy bills on our hands. Stay tuned!

I have lived lifetimes over the last few months, and I can’t say I won’t be pleased to put this session behind us. We’ve got a busy few weeks ahead, but we’ll keep you posted as always.


Updates

  • Energy
    • Attention Duke Energy Carolinas customers in Seneca, Anderson, Spartanburg, and Lancaster! Duke is asking regulators at the Public Service Commission for a rate hike, and you have a chance to speak up. Join public hearings on April 16 (Seneca), April 22 (Anderson), April 23 (Spartanburg), and April 25 (Lancaster). Find details and registration links here, and contact [email protected] with any questions. Regulators will hear Duke’s side of the story—here’s your chance to tell yours! 
  • Events
    • Celebrate Earth Day with CVSC! On Monday, April 22nd, from 12-1 CVSC is hosting a webinar called Partnerships, Politics, and Policy: A Holistic Approach to Environmental Advocacy and Education. Join us as we discuss our unique approach to conservation, updates on our work, and the many ways that you can get involved. Register here!

Action Center

Here’s a round-up of current actions you can take to help us advance conservation policy during this legislative session. If you’ve already taken these actions, thank you! We’ll add more actions and provide updates as things unfold.


Highlights

This month, CVSC launched our Spring Membership Drive to help us defend the environmental laws, policies, and regulations that safeguard our environment, protect the health and safety of our people, and preserve South Carolina’s special places for future generations.

Can you chip in $10, $20, or $30 right now to ensure we have the resources we need to affirm every South Carolinian’s right to clean air, abundant water, and healthy communities. BONUS: Every donation made before April 30 will be TRIPLE MATCHED up to $5,000.  Triple my gift!


In the News


The Legislative Hotlist is an update from our Senior Vice President of Government Relations & Policy, Meagan Diedolf. Sign up for emails to get the Hotlist delivered directly to your inbox!

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