Last week, the House was back in session after some time off for Easter. As we near the end of the legislative session, we’ve been very busy in Columbia.
In the coming weeks, we should expect long days on the House floor of passing important legislation and finalizing our state budget as it comes back from the Senate. As a reminder, we have just three weeks remaining until the House adjourns for the remainder of the year.
On Wednesday, after hundreds of amendments and over eight hours of debate, the House voted to outlaw the teaching of critical race theory to keep bias and impartiality out of our schools.
The "Transparency and Integrity in Education Act'' requires that when our rich history is taught, it is taught without bias and age-appropriately. It requires teachers to teach facts without bias and includes a complaint process for when it is not. It ensures that teachers, school employees, or volunteers will not be required to teach children gender or sexuality diversity training.
Additionally, we worked hard in committees, reviewing and amending legislation sent over from the Senate. I’m pleased to see the Senate working through several important bills sent to them from the House.
H. 3144 received a favorable report from a Senate Committee this week. The “South Carolina Workforce Industry Needs Scholarships Act” (SC WINS) provides certain students attending a two-year technical college a state scholarship, given they meet certain eligibility requirements.
However, I’m disappointed the Senate did not support the election reform and integrity bill that I cosponsored, H. 4919, as passed by the House and supported by Gov. McMaster.
This bill would ensure that our election system is secure, uniform across the state, and free of voter fraud. Hopefully, the Senate will reconsider amending the bill with unnecessary language that would force Gov. McMaster to veto the bill, killing any chance of election reforms this important election year.
We need these election safeguards in place as soon as possible.
I hope you have a good week. Please let me know if I can be of any assistance.
Rep. Lee Hewitt