State House Update – Week of June 15 -22, 2009

The House met this week on June 16 for one day to address ten vetoes and other matters that had been to conference committee. All ten of the Governor’s vetoes were overridden. These bills included the following:

• The pay day lending bill which limits consumers to one loan at a time and caps the amount of money that may be borrowed at any one time;
• Legislation to restructure and stabilize the State Ports Authority including the creation of five and twenty year long range development and financing plans;
• A bill limiting the ability of local governments to regulate livestock farms and poultry houses (I voted against this bill and to uphold the veto);
• A bill limiting the amount of real property tax on a newly constructed single family home that is not occupied and vacant; and
• A bill intended to address problems with the state sexual predator law but which actually lowered the penalty for first time sexual predators who fail to register under state law (I voted against this bill and to uphold the veto).

The House and Senate passed the Tax Realignment Commission bill. The Governor now has it for his consideration. If he vetoes the bill, this tax reform commission will most likely be dead until next year as the Speaker and the Senate President Pro Tem say that they will not call the House and Senate back to address a veto of that legislation.

Additionally, Representatives Clyburn, Stewart, and I were delighted to welcome the South Aiken High School Boy’s soccer team to the State House. The House presented the team, the coaches, and the school administrative staff with a Resolution congratulating them for their class 3A state championship season. Also, all of the team, coaches, and staff were recognized from the House floor. Many of the parents traveled with the players for the occasion. The Speaker of the House received a South Aiken High baseball cap which he wore from the podium immediately following the recognition. I am very proud of our championship team from Aiken County.

I worked more this week on the ongoing efforts to improve the Avondale water system. We continue to search for additional grant funding and we are optimistic that we can reach a solution for the community soon.

I held a town meeting on Monday night, June 22 at the Aiken County Council Administrative Building. I provided a detailed end of session legislative update.

Over the summer, I will continue to provide updates but they will not be as frequent as they have been during the session. If you need me or have a particular concern, please contact me. Thank you for your interest and the opportunity for me to serve our District.

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