2024 Week 3 Update
As we continue our work in the State House this week, my focus has been firmly on a matter of utmost importance to all of us: the safety and well-being of our children in the digital age. I'm eager to share with you some key legislative developments that have taken place, which I believe are crucial steps towards safeguarding our children online.
The first of these is a groundbreaking bill that sets stringent guidelines for website and online application operators, designed to ensure that minors are not exposed to inappropriate content on the internet. H.3424, known as the Child Online Safety Act, passed the Judiciary Committee on Tuesday. I am fully committed to supporting it on the House floor in the coming weeks.
Another important bill, H.4700, the Social Media Regulation Act, aims to require parental consent for minors to create social media accounts and places restrictions on access during certain hours. This proactive approach gives parents more control and oversight over their children's online interactions. Like the Child Online Safety Act, this bill also passed the Judiciary Committee on Tuesday. It will soon be debated and voted on the floor, where I intend to give it my full support.
On Wednesday I had the honor of attending the Governor's State of the State address, where he highlighted our state's progress and future direction. He commended South Carolina's economic growth, focusing on advanced manufacturing and tourism, and outlined a significant plan to modernize our healthcare system by consolidating key agencies. The Governor also emphasized the importance of education and infrastructure, addressing our commitment to public safety and mental health. I am inspired by this vision for our state and look forward to working towards these goals for the betterment of our community.
Looking ahead, we are preparing to address two significant legislative initiatives that promise to enhance our state's health and economic landscape.
The first is an innovative healthcare reform, mentioned by the Governor in his address, that aims to consolidate six key health agencies into the Executive Office of Health and Policy. This reform is geared towards streamlining our system for improved accessibility and effectiveness. I expect this bill to be filed soon and will keep you updated on its progress. In the meantime, feel free to learn more about the proposal in an Op-Ed that Representatives Newton and Herbkersman wrote this week.
Another exciting piece of legislation I am keeping an eye on is H.4710, which is currently in the Ways and means Committee. This bill aims to index our state’s unemployment benefits, which would be a win for our state’s people, businesses, and economy! The proposal will help encourage a robust and active workforce, protect the state from insolvency, and promote reemployment. I expect swift movement on this bill in the coming weeks as it is a top priority of the House Republican Caucus.
In the Senate:
The SC Telehealth and Telemedicine Modernization Act, H.4159, is making significant strides in the Senate. This crucial bill, originally introduced by Rep. Herbkersman in the House, aims to modernize telehealth practices, ensuring high standards of care and expanding access through technology. I am closely monitoring its progress as it promises to greatly enhance healthcare accessibility in South Carolina.
Other Important Links:
-For updates from the Governor, visit: https://governor.sc.gov
-To download the SC Legislature Mobile app for iOS and Android devices, search “SC Legislature” on the App Store/Google Play.