McMaster Removing $2.3 Million from South Carolina’s 2024-25 Budget

Henry McMaster

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster announced 21 budget vetoes totaling nearly $2.3 million from the Palmetto State’s fiscal 2024-25 budget.

The Republican governor announced his vetoes during a Wednesday media briefing, calling on state lawmakers to replace earmarks with merit-based and competitive grants. The budget includes more than 500 earmarks totaling $424.7 million.

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South Carolina Sees Unemployment Rate Increase in May

William Floyd

South Carolina’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased in May to 3.4%, and the state’s top labor official said higher interest rates may be partly to blame.

While the state’s unemployment rate increased from 3.2% last month, officials noted it is below the national rate of 4%.

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Attorney General: Student Loan Ruling ‘a Huge Win for South Carolina’

Alan Wilson

South Carolina’s attorney general called a federal judge’s decision to block part of President Joe Biden’s latest push to delay or cancel roughly half a trillion dollars in student debt “a huge win for South Carolina.”

On Monday, U.S. District Judge Daniel Crabtree in Kansas and U.S. District Judge John Ross in Missouri issued separate rulings halting Biden’s plan, dubbed the Saving on a Valuable Education — or SAVE — Plan. Republican attorneys general, including South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson, filed a lawsuit challenging the plan.

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Trump’s Former DOJ Official Jeffrey Clark Files Post-Hearing Brief Poking Holes in the D.C. Bar’s Disciplinary Panel Findings

Donald Trump’s former DOJ official, Jeffrey Clark, is fighting a recommendation from the D.C. Bar’s disciplinary panel to discipline him over his concerns about illegalities in the 2020 election. Last month, he filed a Post-Hearing Brief challenging a nonbinding preliminary finding of culpability for drafting a letter that was never sent to Georgia officials advising them of their options in dealing with the irregularities.

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South Carolina Agency Changes Name and Doubles Down on Mission

Alan Wilson

A partially federally funded South Carolina Agency is changing its name as it doubles down on its enforcement of crimes targeting the state’s vulnerable adult population.

South Carolina’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit is changing its name to the Vulnerable Adults and Medicaid Provider Fraud Unit. State officials said the agency experienced a 30% increase in reports from law enforcement thanks to an outreach effort targeting local agencies over the past two years.

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Second Texas Court Rules That Texas Bar Has No Evidence Sidney Powell Violated Ethics Rules with 2020 Election Lawsuits

Former federal prosecutor Sidney Powell, who brought four lawsuits challenging the results of the 2020 election, was cleared of charges from the State Bar of Texas by the Texas Court of Appeals this month. The court ruled in a 24-page opinion upholding the trial court that the Texas Bar’s Commission for Lawyer Discipline failed to show how she engaged in “dishonesty, fraud, deceit, or misrepresentation” in lawsuits she filed challenging Donald Trump’s presidential loss.

The lower trial court found that the evidence against Powell was so lacking that it granted no-evidence summary judgment for her against the Texas bar, which the Texas bar appealed. The higher court criticized the Texas bar, “The Bar employed a ‘scattershot’ approach to the case, which left this court and the trial court ‘with the task of sorting through the argument to determine what issue ha[d] actually been raised.’”

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South Carolina Gov. McMaster Signs Pair of ‘Child Safety’ Measures

South Carolina

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster ceremonially signed a pair of “child safety” measures on Wednesday, including one mandating age verification on websites with sexually explicit content.

H. 3424, the Child Online Safety Act, mandates that sites with at least one-third of their content being “obscene material” enforce an age verification system starting Jan. 1, 2025. This would ostensibly bar users under 18 from accessing the site’s material.

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South Carolina Lawmakers Pass Series of Small Business Bills

Small Business Open

South Carolina lawmakers passed several small business-focused bills before skipping town last week but didn’t pass a high-profile measure business groups hoped they would.

Palmetto State legislators passed H. 4832, the “Paid Family Leave Insurance Act,” to create private insurance covering paid family leave and H. 3992 to allow employers to establish a payment plan for paying delinquent unemployment insurance taxes and allow them to potentially pay at a reduced rate.

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