Tuesday, January 12 – Thursday, January 14

Tuesday, the 2nd session of the 118th General Assembly reconvened fo what is expected to be one of THE toughest years ever…and an election year for all 124 House members.

Ralph Norman (R – York) was sworn into office to fulfill the unexpired term of Carl Gullick. You may recall, Ralph previously served in the House 2005-2006 before leaving to run for US Congress. Representative Norman was assigned to the Education and Public Works committee.

Very little work was done in chamber but we did set H.4219 (Censure Resolution) for Special Order the following day.

Wednesday provided little drama when, in 20 minutes, the House overwhelmingly (and historically) censured Governor Mark Sanford by a vote of 102-11.

We also had Second Reading on H.3279 which would allow SC voters to decide whether or not the Secretary of State should be an appointed position by the Governor. With a vote of 77-41 the bill moved to Third Reading the following day but failed short of the 2/3 vote of the body (124 members in the body) to pass. This is one of several Restructuring Bills we will consider this year.

Also Wednesday, Representative Huggins , McLeod and I also filed H.4314 and H.4315 (resolutions recognizing the Chapin High School State Champion Cheerleading squad) and, as previously mentioned here on Nathan’s News, I also co-sponsored H. 4251, H. 4108, and H.4269 .

Thursday, H.3279 still did not receive the required votes to pass (72-38) but procedural moves were done to allow reconsideration when we return next week. We then began debate on H.3280 but adjourned until Tuesday. H.3280 is another Restructuring Bill that would allow SC voters to decide whether or not the Superintendent of Education would be appointed by the Governor.

One piece of legislation, H.4303 did pass the House on a vote of 112-1. This Joint Resolution allows for immediate action to assist in the restructuring of the Employment Security Commission . We expect to pass more reforms in legislation later this session but the resolution is a good start to immediately start “fixing the problems”.

While we may not have spent much time in chamber, there were several committee and sub-committee meetings throughout the Blatt Building this week.

I want to again thank the following constituents who stopped by my office this week: Latonya Edwards, Ralph Bell and Ben Thompson. Seeing members of our community and listening to their concerns, suggestions and desires for our state is what I love most about this job.

Before I left for the week, I was able to record a new video for the website which touches briefly on the Republican agenda for 2010 . As I mention in the video, I’m pleased to see that this year my Campaign Finance Disclosure bill is supported by the caucus after garnering several bi-partisan sponsors last year. I expect passage by February.

That’s a very brief recap of some of the activites this week in the SC House of Representatives. Come back often and I’ll try to continually keep you informed!

Of course, please comment or contact me here with any ideas, advice or suggestions you have to improve our state!