Gov. Nikki Haley, Attorney General Alan Wilson and others are asking state lawmakers to pass legislation that would consolidate several crime victim service agencies under the Attorney General’s Office.
“A proposal to consolidate crime victim services to one office, at one place, under one leader,” Haley described the idea in a press conference at the South Carolina Crime Victims Garden in Columbia on Thursday.
The proposal would move 55 state employees who handle a wide variety of victim’s issues and the crime victim ombudsman under state Attorney General Alan Wilson’s office.
Haley said the consolidation effort would be another step in reducing the state’s, constant and menacing placement at the top of lists for domestic violence. “We’re not going to stop until everyone feels that they are safe,” Haley said.
The governor signed an executive order Thursday that will help transition the administrative functions of the agencies. However, legislation by state lawmakers is still needed to create the Crime Victim Services Office.
“We will have a bipartisan support effort. Not just politically, but around the state. From local levels all the way up to the state levels of the people who have been working so hard,” said Haley.
Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle are confident that the legislation will be approved during the session that begins in January.