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Legislative Priorities Getting own to the Final Hour
With only eight legislative days remaining in the 2016, the Chamber’s legislative priorities are getting down to the final hour.
The House Ways and Means Revenue Policy Subcommittee met to discuss the road funding bond bill. The subcommittee, chaired by Representative Brian White, amended the Senate bill with a few changes.
Most notably, the subcommittee added a section to the bond bill to include governance at the South Carolina Department of Transportation (SCDOT). We saw the subcommittee add similar language in the governance bill (HB 3579) that's in Conference Committee now. They also added an additional $12.25 million in DMV fees to be bonded by the South Carolina Transportation Infrastructure Bank.
Today the bill will go before the full Ways and Means Committee and is expected to receive a favorable report. From there it will go to the House floor next week. We expect the bill to pass easily and end up in conference where both the House and Senate will hammer out their differences regarding the governance of the SCDOT.
Though not a long term solution, the funds in the bond bill, combined with existing SCDOT funding from the current motor fuel user fee, will result in a total of $4.2-4.5 billion over the next 10 years to improve our state's crumbling infrastructure.
Military Retiree Income Tax Exemption:
Taking a look at the Chamber's other legislative priorities, the military retiree tax exemption bill. H.3147 had an objection placed on the bill yesterday by Senator Malloy. Currently the Chamber is working with the South Carolina Military Base Task Force to place the bill in a special order slot meaning the bill will be debated on the floor.
Funding for Aeronautical Training Center at Trident Technical College:
Lastly the final $16 million for the Aeronautical Training Center at Trident Technical College was included in the House budget. However, the Senate reduced the amount to $12.3 million this year. The House will begin to look at the changes made to the budget by the Senate on Thursday. The budget will go to a Conference Committee to hammer out the differences between the two bodies.