With just three legislative days left in this year’s regular session of the General Assembly, the fate of two much-discussed bills remains unclear.
Senators have moved forward with measures to make hate crimes illegal and to reform Santee Cooper without selling the utility, but whether compromises with House versions of bills will be finished is up in the air, according to legislative insiders.
That won’t be the case with measures to allow gun owners to carry pistols in the open, as long as there are permits, or with authorization of firing squads as a choice for state executions. Both versions of the House and Senate measures are close enough that compromise is expected in the week ahead. Gov. Henry McMaster also is expected to sign both.
It looks like three other bills under consideration — family leave for state employees, election law reform and approval of use of marijuana to relieve suffering — may not be resolved by Thursday when the regular session ends.
In June, lawmakers will meet to finish the state’s $11 billion budget and consider any measures in conference committee.