Elections are over. The Governor was re-elected as were all the Constitutional Officers except the Lt. Governor and the Superintendent of Education. Also, 111 members of the House or Representatives returned to the legislature and 13 new House members were elected. Of the 13 new members, eight were republicans and five were democrats.
The new Lt. Governor is for Attorney General Henry McMaster, and the new Superintendent of Education is Molly Spearman, a former member of the House of Representatives and the spouse of a registered engineer.
With the new legislators comes a clean slate of legislation for the next two-year session. In other words, all the bills that did not pass last year have been discarded and many will be re-introduced this session.
One of the bills expected to be re-introduced is the Engineers and Surveyors’ Practice Act. This bill did not move last session, but the interest among the engineering community is high and successful passage is expected this session.
Also, infrastructure funding did not move last year. However, acting Speaker, Rep. Jay Lucas, convened an ad-hoc committee on infrastructure funding. It has met three times and is expected to make recommendations on transportation funding.
Several business organizations are promoting transportation funding next session, including South Carolinians to Fix Our Roads and the SC State Chamber of Commerce. Although the Governor has promised to veto any increases in gasoline user fees, there is optimism for new funds dedicated to transportation.