View this email in your browser
May 6, 2016 Chamber Website   Facebook Twitter YouTube
Happy Small Business Week! Small businesses are the engine of our South Carolina economy and make up well over 50% of our membership. And while small business issues are at the top of our list all year long, here’s a look at how honored #SCSmallBiz this week:
Introducing the first ever 2016 Small Business & Entrepreneurship Guide! The #SBEGuide16 is our NEW publication focused on the small business and entrepreneurial community of South Carolina. Highlights include the Small Business Resource Guide, Small Business Legislation to watch, The Making of Charleston's Silicon Harbor, and Promoting Entrepreneurship in Higher Education. Click here for more information and here to read the SBE Guide in full!
Chamber hosts 2016 Salute to Small Business… We hosted the 2016 Salute Wednesday to honor South Carolina small businesses and connect them with resources and companies that will help them continue to thrive.  The event featured an exhibitor area, B2B matchmaking session where over 1,200 appointments were conducted, an exclusive networking space and more. Click here to see all of our pictures from the event! We also announced the winners of the Small Business Week awards. Click here to see who won!
Looking Ahead...We're partnering with Merrill Lynch and Hyper Growth Business Strategies to host the first ever South Carolina Scaling Up Business Growth Workshop on Tuesday, May 17 at Charleston Southern University. Chamber Members get $100 off! More information here!
ANOTHER victory for South Carolina business… After S.1203 failed to gain any traction, Sen. Lee Bright attempted to attach his similar job-killing amendment to the budget in a last-ditch effort to get the bill passed. The amendment was ruled out of order in another victory for South Carolina Business. Your voice matters -  Click here to get election updates from the SC Good Government Committee and click here to sign up for updates!
Deadline to register is TONIGHT, May 6th, at 6 pm!
Employee Health Benefits Lunch & Learn
May 25, 2016 

*NEW* Get up-to-date information on SC business issues and earn professional development credits all while eating lunch!
Statehouse Update: The Senate passed its version of the $7.5 billion state budget in record time this week by a vote of 36-5. The bill includes $315 million added for road repairs, including $200 million a year to be bonded through the STIB. The plan would convert bonds into a $4 billion funding package that would pave primary roads, widen interstates, and eliminate load-restricted bridges on secondary roads. Secretary Christy Hall told a House subcommittee Wednesday that under the Senate's plan, DOT would allocate roughly $2 billion to interstates, $1.2 billion to $1.4 billion to pavements and $950 million to structurally deficient bridges.

The Senate has approved a measure to make the funding for infrastructure permanent through a separate bill, S.1258, which currently resides in the House Ways and Means Committee. They are also working to address the reform component of the road debate through H.3579, which is currently in conference committee. 

House leadership is likely to combine the reform and funding bills in order to have the issues move together.

An additional $37 million was also allocated to the DOT to make up for road-repairs related to October’s historic floods.

In other news, S.229 was amended by full House Judiciary Committee to remove a harmful amendment pertaining to coal ash. The amended bill was favorably reported out of full committee on Tuesday and is now on the House Calendar.

The House is on furlough next week and will return Tuesday, May 17th. Senate returns next Wednesday, the 11th. There are four legislative weeks left.
Bills on our radar:

H.4967 - Business License Compliance Reform Act

Summary: This bill simplifies and reforms the business license tax process
Chamber Position: Actively pursuing amendments to improve the legislation
STATUS UPDATE: Chamber President Ted Pitts testified in support of this bill in front of the Ad-Hoc Subcomittee last week stating, "business licensing in South Carolina is one of the most unfriendly in the nation." The bill was carried over. 

H.5109 – South Carolina Business License Tax Standardization Act
Summary: This bill aims to streamline the process for obtaining a business license within South Carolina cities and towns
Chamber Position: Actively pursuing amendments to improve the legislation
STATUS UPDATE: Currently residing in House LCI Committee

*Business Licensing Reform is a top priority for the Chamber as detailed in our 2016 Competitiveness Agenda

H.4717 – S.C. Farm Aid Fund
Summary: This bill allows farmers with total crop losses of 40% or greater from the flood to be eligible for a limited state grant.
Chamber Position: Support; Scoring vote for Legislative Scorecard
STATUS UPDATE: House concurred with Senate amendments, bill will now be ratified and sent to the governor for approval.

H.5226 – Electric Service
Summary: This bill requires the public service authority to sell power to processors at market-based prices.
Chamber Position: Oppose on basis that the legislation interferes in contract negotiations.
Status: LCI Subcommittee adjourned debate on this bill Tuesday



  • Penton’s Aviation Week Network partners with SC Council on Competitiveness and SC Aerospace on workforce study…
  • AFL receives 2016 Community Partner Award…
  • Education initiatives in the Palmetto State boosted by $500,000 in Duke Energy grants…
  • Nexsen Pruet Partner Neil Robinson named Compleat Lawyer…
  • LS3P Founder Frank Lucas, FAIA awarded the Order of the Palmetto…
  • Colliers International associates named 2015 CoStar Power Brokers…
  • Palmetto Health recognizes 2016 Palmetto Gold recipients…
  • CBRE Seaports Index report shows strong growth for Charleston port in 2015…
Does your company have news or an event that you’d like featured in next week’s ChamberBuzz? Send info to!


BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina | Duke Energy Carolinas | South Carolina Electric & Gas



AT&T | Bank of America | BB&T of South Carolina | Haynsworth Sinkler Boyd, P.A. |  

Kinder Morgan | Michelin North America, Inc. | Milliken & Company | Nexsen Pruet, LLC | 
Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C. | Santee Cooper | Sonoco | Wells Fargo

South Carolina Chamber of Commerce | 1301 Gervais Street, Suite 1100 | Columbia, SC 29201