In a building that wouldn’t exist without the arts and creative vision is where the SC House of Representatives is holding a special session July 17th beginning at 1pm. On the agenda is a vote to override Gov. Haley’s 74 line vetoes of the South Carolina state budget including the cut of the SC Arts Commission, which is veto #1. There is beauty and creativity all around us, which is one reason why it is unimaginable that arts initiatives would be at jeopardy.
PaisleyPerspective decided to be present for the vote to override the veto that resulted in the recent statewide budget cuts. The cuts included funds used for sexual assault victims, SC Conservation Commission, one time raise for public school educators in addition to the drastic cut of the SC Arts Commission. Outlined in the agenda for the SC House listed are all 74 vetoes by Gov. Haley for the SC House to vote to override or sustain. The session was called to order at 1:05pm and general formalities such as an invocation and reciting of the U.S. pledge of allegiance took place.
After the formality of recognizing visitors on the floor of the house as well as in the gallery the voting began. The vote to override veto #1 which took away funds for the SC Arts Commission began with discussion and concerns about the need to reorganize the commission. Within the visitor gallery constituents leaned forward anxiously awaiting the vote. The speaker called for roll call and a vote of 110 to 5 was cast to override veto #1, specifically Part IA, Page 120; Section 30 – Arts Commission, Total Funds Available: $3,446,946 Total Funds; $1,937,598 General Funds. There are a significant amount of other vetoes overridden, however, another controversial veto was #51 Part IB, Page 472; Section 90, Statewide Revenue, Proviso 90.20B, Non-recurring Revenue, Item 27(b), Department of Health and Environmental Control – SC Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault: $453,680 overridden with a vote of 111 to 0.
For details of other vetoes overridden or sustained go to http://scstatehouse.gov as well as to learn which representatives voted. Times like this when the fate of a whole agency is in the hands of state government demonstrates the importance of each citizen being engaged and informed. It is our tax dollars and our lives that are affected by the work done in the South Carolina General Assembly as well as work done at the local and federal levels. Understand what is at risk when you choose not to vote. PaisleyPerspective reiterates its founders motto, “your vote is your voice, don’t stay silent.”
By: G. Hughes
About The Author: G. Hughes is an activist in the state of South Carolina where she believes in social awareness and justice. Ms. Hughes seeks to be fair and impartial when it comes to legislative matters, however, she primarily has liberal views. She is a fan and supporter of PaisleyPerspective and we thank her for this blog contribution.