The legislative session is more than half over and your Small Business Chamber has been very busy. This e-newsletter updates you on our legislative agenda and introduces you to a new issue. There is also information on efforts to prepare high schools students with meaningful careers and news on developments regarding the number one issue for small businesses.
The Small Business Chamber has been actively supporting or opposing the following bills and issues, which have seen movement this year. Thanks to all those who have responded to our e-mail Action Alerts.
Support Technical College Tuition Assistance—This week, a Senate/House conference committee began meeting to try to reach a compromise on how lottery revenue will be used. The Small Business Chamber supports the Senate plan, which allocates $48.2 for technical college tuition assistance to help South Carolinians develop the skilled-training small businesses need.
Oppose Mandatory Employee Wage Garnishment—The Small Business Chamber is pleased to report that Senate Bill 154, which would allow the court to order an employer to garnish the wages of a worker for the employee’s commercial debts, appears to have been successfully stopped in a House subcommittee.
Support Property Rights—The Small Business Chamber has worked with a coalition of business organizations to support S.528. This bill would allow for faster resolution to property rights disputes between private entities and government. It is currently in the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Support Fair Conservation Efforts—The SC Conservation Bank, which the Small Business Chamber endorsed, will become a reality. The Bank, an entity supported with existing fees, would award grants for the purchase (from willing landowners only) of property deemed worthy of conservation.
Support Main Street development—The Historic Rehabilitation Incentives Act has passed the legislature with the support of the Small Business Chamber. The state will now give tax incentives for rehabilitation of historic buildings, which will translate into an economic stimulus effort for local small businesses.
Support Increase in Bad-Check Fee—House Bill 3286 has made it through the House and is now on the Senate calendar. The Small Business Chamber is working to ensure the passage of this bill, which would increase the fee businesses could collect for bad checks of $100 or less from $25 to $30.
Oppose Over Zealous DHEC Regulations—While not a proponent of large hog farms, the Small Business Chamber joined agribusiness organizations in opposing DHEC’s original regulations on the matter both because DHEC usurped the authority of the General Assembly and the regulations unnecessarily jeopardized agribusiness in general. After considerable negotiations, the new regulations are much more acceptable and are ready for action by the legislature.
Support Small Business One-Stop—The Small Business Chamber continues to work with state agencies and others to establish a SC Business-One-Stop, which would create an internet web site from which to obtain all regulatory information on starting any type of business in the state.