A roundup of what’s making news in South Carolina state government.
An Horry County legislator, once the chairman of the South Carolina House’s agriculture and environmental committee, has resigned from the chamber.
“It is with a heavy heart that I hereby submit this letter of resignation from my seat,” State Rep. Nelson Hardwick, R-Surfside Beach, submitted in a letter to the House Speaker’s Office on Tuesday. “For personal reasons, I feel as though I should step away from life in public service to take some time to focus on my health.” Hardwick said his resignation took effect Tuesday evening.
But the sudden resignation came two weeks after an inappropriate conduct complaint was filed against Hardwick. A House Ethics Committee meeting scheduled for Wednesday was canceled after the Republican submitted his resignation letter. The House Speaker’s Office confirmed he had been shown the results of an investigation into his conduct shortly before he decided to step down.
“As Speaker, maintaining the integrity and public trust of this Body is my highest priority,” House Speaker Jay Lucas said after news of the investigation was made public. “Any inappropriate activity related to the men, women, and staff that serve in the House Chamber has been and will continue to be investigated thoroughly and expeditiously. Each of us have been entrusted with the opportunity to serve the public and that trust must never be called into question.”