If you judge work in the House by what is done on the floor, you’d be discounting most the hard work that goes at the subcommittee and committee levels .
After a week of furlough, and just two weeks into the session, the House Calendar is pretty lean right now with very few debated bills.
Most bills are initially read across the desk and immediately referred by the Speaker to a committee. This bill though went “without reference” which meant the bill hit the floor immediately, thereby bypassing the vetting that occurs at subcommittee,committee levels. That might have been a reason why the bill quickly went from the uncontested calendar, to the contested calendar. Then after much floor debate, the bill was voted to be sent to the Ways and Means Committee.
If you’re keeping score at home , this was a recorded, roll-call vote 67-46 to commit the bill to Ways and Means for further vetting. (You’ll need to scroll down half way through the journal to see the Yes/No votes).
At the committee-level, Ways and Means still garners a lot of the attention as they work on next year’s budget. LCI got attention too with a Payday Lending Bill that appears to be on the fast track for auto-approval when it reaches the House floor. (My constituent, Warren Bolton, has an interesting opinion about this bill).
That bill wasn’t all the hub-bub though as apparently this week some House Members’ personal email addresses become public. Fortunately most voters realize that our state house email addresses are the best way to contact us.
Lastly, on a local level here in House District 71, you’ll be pleased to know there soon could be changes in the makeup of our Richland County Recreation Commission. Several Richland Delegation House Members I spoke with last week are in support of restructuring the commission – either by returning its functions to County Council Members or by expanding our appointments for a more, fair process that allows all areas of the county to have representation. I expect the latter will be the consensus and I’m hopeful this week our delegation will file the bill with everyone of us listed as a sponsor.
In this weeks’ rewind, I’d also like to recognize the following constituents who were at the State House this week: Sharon Dorn, Rosalind Funk, Robbie Koon DeFreese visited to talk about State Employees/Retirees. Chief Mark Keel, Colonel Kenny Lancaster and Captain Zack Wise were all recognzied from the House balcony for their work with the SC Department of Public Safety. I also enjoyed speaking with Sara Moore (freshman, Ben Lippen, Chestnut Hills) who visited with others from Youth Corps and was also recognized in the balcony for her efforts to improve our community and state. Carolyn Abrams made her annual visit regarding the SC Association of Nurse Anethetists (try saying that three times fast!). I always enjoy meeting with her and her fellow CRNAs in my office.
For more “week in review” information, you may wish to read Wolfe Reports. That’s one of the newer blogs out there following state politics and apparently he spends as much time over at the State House as we elected officials do. Of course, you can also follow sctweets.com for live, up-to-the-minute tweets from the House floor by several elected officials.