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$9 Billion SC Budget passes House and Senate 

State employees to receive a raise 

COLUMBIA—On Tuesday May 21, the South Carolina House and Senate passed a $9 billion budget. The budget will raise the wages of teachers and almost all state employees in South Carolina.  

The budget sets aside $160 million for raises for teachers; they are expected to get at least a 4% increase in pay. The budget also plans for a 2% raise for all state employees, with a $500 bonus for state employees who make less than $50,000 yearly.  

The budget will provide $25 million in relief funds for farmers that lost crops and suffered damage from Hurricane Florence last fall. $40 million of the budget is designated for buying new voting machines.  

The spending plan is now in the hands of Governor Henry McMaster, he does have the power to line item veto but the House and Senate anticipates that Governor McMaster will only reject a few items in the budget that will result in minor changes 

House Speaker Jay Lucas is optimistic that the House and Senate will not have to meet again until next years session begins in January. “Barring an emergency, I don’t think we will be back until January.” 

The budget also addressed several items not directly linked to spending. One of those items agreed on a one-year suspension of granting any permits that would allow laying any pipes or building tanks onshore, that could later be used for offshore drilling.