Protect our fishery resources

Hope you had a good week. My week in Columbia was productive.

Fishing is important economically to Charleston and Georgetown counties as well as the rest of coastal South Carolina, so it’s important to protect our fishery resources. As an avid fisherman, who loves to fish for flounder, it caught my attention when local fishermen and the SC Dept. of Natural Resources raised concerns about the long-term sustainability of the flounder stock.

As a result, on Thursday I cosponsored a bill (H.3665) to increase the flounder minimum size limit from 14” to 15” total length statewide. According to SCDNR, this one-inch size increase should greatly increase flounder reproductive capabilities.

I’ve personally reached out to every House member who represents the coast seeking their support for the bill and the results have been positive. The bill has been referred to the Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environmental Affairs Committee, of which I’m a member.

On Wednesday, the General Assembly convened in a joint session to fill judicial seats, including an opening on the state Supreme Court. My colleagues and I elected Judge George C. “Buck” James by acclamation to a term on the Supreme Court.

A bill that would ask voters in 2018 to amend the state constitution to have the Governor appoint the state Superintendent of Education made its way out of the Judiciary Committee and is heading to the House floor. I support the bill because it would allow the Governor to directly oversee the delivery of public education to South Carolina’s children and be held accountable for the results. In 38 states, the Governor makes this appointment.

As part of the Charleston County Legislative Delegation, I met with the Mt. Pleasant Town Council and Mayor Linda Page to hear about town concerns and discuss issues. I enjoyed meeting the town leadership and found the discussions enlightening and productive.

Thank you for the privilege of serving District 108 in the House! Please let me know if I can be of assistance.

Rep. Lee Hewitt