South Carolina Senate President Pro Tem Glenn McConnell has set up an agenda and a subcommittee to achieve what he calls fiscal fitness for state government.
The panel’s first public hearing is this evening at 6:30 at the Greenville County Council chambers.
McConnell is chairman and he has appointed key Republicans and Democrats to this special subcommittee: Sen. Tom Davis (R- Beaufort); Sen. Vincent Sheheen (D-Kershaw); Sen. Shane Massey (R-Edgefield); Sen. Jake Knotts (R-Lexington); Sen. Gerald Malloy(D-Darlington); and Sen. Phil Shoopman (R-Greenville County).
They want the public to tell them what should make state government more financially sound and what they think about McConnell’s to-do list for the upcoming session which starts in January.
Sen. McConnell has named initiatives to place a constitutional cap on state spending, conduct a streamlining review of state government, enact a taxpayer fairness act, a deficit prevention act, and a state trust fund protection act.
He has added to the agenda a measure to change the way regulations and fees are approved in South Carolina, His idea would require an affirmative vote of the General Assembly before any regulations go into effect and he wants to prohibit fees from being created or raised in regulations or in the appropriations act.
Many of McConnell’s ideas would regulate the actions of Gov. Nikki Haley’s Cabinet agencies. For instance, his restrictions on deficit spending stems from the fact that the Budget and Control Board forgave the deficit of the state’s Medicaid agency.
McConnell and others took to the Senate floor to complain about that action. That same Senate put off the governor’s own streamlining and restructuring bills, so Haley’s comment was that she would like to see them take action rather than talk about it.