Update – June 21 to June 27, 2010

The House of Representatives did not meet this past week. I hope that you find this update helpful and informative:

Session Tomorrow: The House and Senate return to Columbia tomorrow for session to address any outstanding gubernatorial vetoes. The House addressed all of Governor Sanford’s budget vetoes two weeks ago. The Senate still has some budget vetoes left to consider tomorrow.

Town Meeting Date Change: My town meeting scheduled for June 29 from 6:30 to 8:00 at Odell Weeks is CANCELLED. The meeting is RESET for Tuesday, July 13 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Please note the change.

Voter Identification Bill: As I wrote last week, this bill’s fate will be determined when the House and the Senate return tomorrow. Two weeks ago, the House passed the final version of this bill which requires voter identification to vote. The photo identification requirement will start in the 2012 elections. Also, it has an eight day period for early voting. This eight day period is from Saturday to Saturday prior to an election day. Finally, the bill still allows absentee voting under certain circumstances during the 30 days prior to an election. After the House sent its final version back to the Senate, some senators in the State Senate filibustered the bill and held it up. The bill’s fate will be determined when the House and Senate return tomorrow.

Economic Development Bill Becomes Law: Last week, Governor Sanford signed the Economic Development Competitiveness Bill. He hailed it as accomplishing meaningful reforms to help our State’s economy. Some of the main points of the bill include the following:

* Reforming the Endowed Chairs program to help shift its focus to job creation and allow private sector investment to lead public sector investment;
* Removing many of the special jobs tax credits that have been legislated over the years, making the state’s credits based purely on economic criteria;
* Providing relief to manufacturing property taxpayers, who currently pay the highest rate in the nation;
* Broadening and modernizing the outdated Economic Impact Zone provisions, enacted in 1995 in response to federal base closures;
* And requiring greater transparency in the reporting process for utility tax credits.

Aiken County Public Library Summer Reading Program: The annual summer reading program for children through the 5th grade has started at the Aiken County Public Library. The Program runs through July 31. Children who read the required number of books will receive a medal and a certificate of completion. Reading is essential to doing well in school. Please encourage as many young people as you can to read this summer. For more information, call the Aiken County Public Library or simply click here.

Speaking to Groups Around the District: Several local groups have asked me to come to one of their meetings to provide an end of session report to their members. If you have a group that would like for me to come to a meeting during the next few months, please let me know.

Email Updates: Many people in District 81 are receiving this email update. However, there are many others who do not receive them because I do not know their email addresses. If you know of people who do not receive my updates but they would like to, please email their names and email addresses to me.

Road Issues: If you see a road problem, you can call the SCDOT at 641-7665 or Aiken County at 642-1532 to report the problem. If you do not get a prompt response, please let me know at TomYoung@schouse.gov or call me. In the past five months, I have received many different reports of problems and I have relayed those to the appropriate agencies.

Thank you for the opportunity to represent you. Please let me know if I can help you in any way or if you have questions about these or other issues. Your feedback is meaningful and appreciated.

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