The highest ranking member of the South Carolina Senate wants to return to session early to override Gov. Henry McMaster’s veto of money to replace school buses that are prone to catch on fire.
Senate President Pro Tempore Hugh Leatherman, R-Florence, released a statement last week saying that the “horror of horrors” would be for a bus loaded with children to catch on fire and they would not be able to get out.
He wants the Legislature to return soon to override the veto. But, since the budget began in the House, the state constitution requires the House to override the veto first before the Senate could take it up at all.
In July, House Speaker Jay Lucas, R-Darlington, released a statement saying that there is other money which can be used for new buses until at least January and he believes returning to session before then would be a waste of taxpayer money.
The governor vetoed $20.5 million for the new buses, largely through state lottery proceeds. McMaster said the money should be spent only on college scholarships that the lottery’s supporters pushed as the reason to create the game.
The State Newspaper reports the vetoed money could have gone to buy 298 buses and lease another 116, according to the South Carolina Department of Education. However, some of that hinged on how much surplus money the lottery would be able to set aside at the end of the budget year.