Legislative Hotlist: February 14, 2023
Happy Valentine’s Day/Galentine’s Day/Palentine’s Day/Regular Ol’ Tuesday! The General Assembly remains focused on social issues, which means it was another slow week for conservation. Let’s dive in!
Budgeting Trouble: Outside of the legislature, a serious accounting error has thrown our Comptroller for a loop. The recent discovery of ten years of “misunderstandings” over cash transfers means that the General Fund was overinflated by $3.5 billion. Although the Revenue and Fiscal Affairs Office said this mistake would not affect this year’s appropriations bill, Senators were “visibly upset” by this revelation. Ironically, the General Assembly is working with a $3.5 billion surplus. We’ll be watching to see how this news affects the budget.
Otherwise, the Office of Resilience presented to a House Ways and Means subcommittee last week. They noted that they’ve been working on their Disaster Recovery Program, which repairs or replaces homes for low to moderate-income individuals. So far, they have repaired or replaced 3,254 homes. The Office requested $20 million to beef up a reserve fund to be used in case of a natural disaster. We support the critical work that the Office of Resilience does to ensure we are in the best position to weather any natural disasters coming our way.
The House Ways and Means Committee will finish up the subcommittee process this week with Proviso meetings. That means next week, the full committee will deliberate on the bill before it heads out to the House floor in mid-March! Meanwhile, the Senate has also begun hearing from agencies – this week the Office of Resilience and Office of Regulatory Staff are both up.
We Need Your Help! We’ve had some success grabbing a few more co-sponsors for Representative Brandon Newton’s Alternative Fuel Property Tax Credit bill, H.3824. This bill will help incentivize businesses and individuals to install electric vehicle charging infrastructure by extending an income tax credit for a portion of the installation cost. It’s imperative that we build more charging infrastructure across the state to support the increase in electric vehicle adoption by consumers. We would love this bill to zip through the legislative process, so please encourage your legislator to cosponsor the bill now (or thank them if they’ve already signed on)!
Save the Date: We hope you’ll join us at our upcoming events!
CVSC 20th Anniversary Celebration: Columbia
Date: March 18 | Time: 5:30 pm
Location: Seibels House & Garden (1601 Richland St, Columbia, SC)
CVSC 20th Anniversary Celebration: Charleston
Date: March 19 | Time: 2:30 pm
Location: Founder’s Hall at Charlestowne Landing (1500 Old Towne Rd, Charleston, SC)
SC Conservation Coalition Lobby Day and Oyster Roast
Date: April 5 | Details to come
CVSC 20th Anniversary Celebration: Greenville
Date: Fall 2023 | Details to come
And finally, don’t forget to check out the full list of bills we’re tracking on our website. That’s a wrap for now!
The Legislative Hotlist is a weekly update from our Government Relations Director, Meagan Diedolf. Sign up for emails to get the Hotlist delivered directly to your inbox!