Ethics Reform Running Up Against Clock in SC Legislature

South Carolina State HouseCOLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – Lawmakers say they are close to finding a compromise on a bill allowing independent investigations of ethics violations by legislators, but its main enemy now may be time.

Sen. Larry Martin said Thursday he likely needs an agreement to take to senators before Thursday’s legislative session ends at 5 p.m. to save the bill.

The bill sets up an independent Ethics Commission to investigate ethics violations for all public officials. If the commission finds a violation likely occurred, it would be sent to the House or Senate Ethics Committee for discussion and possible punishment.

The House and Senate are trying to work out technical differences including whether the legislative committee could send an allegation back if they disagree with how the commission interpreted a rule.

Categories: State