Week 4 of the 2020 legislative session began with Nancy Pelosi symbolically snatching herself bald at the state of the union address, continued with Donald Trump being acquitted of his impeachment charges and ended with several non-Greenville legislators symbolically hijacking the I85/I385 interchange in the name of Donald Trump. The big nonsensical political wheel keeps on spinning. Meanwhile, I did get some work done.
The Education and Public Works Committee has 5 subcommittees. I chair the Transportation subcommittee. We had our first meeting this week to consider 3 bills.
The first bill required the SCDOT contractors who mow the grass along the sides of our state highways to first pick up the trash before they mow. After hearing that the fiscal impact would be $20 million, the subcommittee adjourned debate on the bill.
The second bill repealed the law that prevents school buses from passing each other on multiple lane highways and repealed their 55 mph absolute speed limit. The intent of the bill is to increase safety by allowing buses to maintain the flow of traffic. The subcommittee voted this bill out favorably.
The third bill increased the penalties for drivers who knowingly impedes traffic while hogging the left lane of a multiple lane highway. As with the school bus bill, the intent is to increase safe travel by improving traffic flow. The subcommittee voted this bill out favorably.
The 2 bills that we passed will be taken up before the full Education and Public Works Committee at its next meeting.
Back to the State of the Union Address, I remember as a high schooler watching Ronald Reagan give his annual address while the Democrat Speaker of the House Tip O’Neill sat up behind him – clapping and sometimes not. Those two politicians did not agree but still showed respect for the office that each occupied. I cannot imagine Tip O’Neill ever ripping up Reagan’s speech. Shame on Pelosi.