The state House of Representatives voted yesterday, 81-23, to concur with the final Senate version of S 3, the “Domestic Violence Reform Act.” This bill now heads to Governor Nikki Haley (R) for her expected signature.
While legislators stated their goal was to not exceed federal restrictions of firearms as they relate to domestic violence convictions and related orders of protection, some wording may not be clear enough to ensure that is the case. NRA still has some unresolved concerns regarding the potential impact of the language. During this legislative process, many of our requested changes had been accepted, but with time for this session running out, proponents of the bill felt there was not enough time to make all of the changes we requested and still meet the deadline for bill passage this year.
While we are disappointed, NRA will work next year to ensure that the provisions of the legislation passed this year that may have unintended consequences are fixed. Thank you to everyone who contacted their legislators and expressed their concern about this piece of legislation.
In addition, yesterday’s Senate Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on H 3025 and H 3799 went very well, but the subcommittee chose to not move either bill. The Chairman, Brad Hutto (D-40), as well as the other members of the subcommittee made it clear that they intend to work carefully on these proposals next year. H 3025 was originally introduced as a Right-to-Carry (RTC) Straight Recognition bill, and later amended to establish a Permitless Carry system for South Carolina. H 3799 is also designed to expand RTC Recognition, but would only add Georgia to the list of states whose RTC permits South Carolina would recognize.
With the South Carolina General Assembly scheduled to adjourn next week, there was little chance of either bill being heard and passed by the full Judiciary, and even less chance of either being heard and acted on by the full Senate. NRA will continue to work with members of the subcommittee, as well as the full Judiciary, to ensure the strongest possible versions of either H 3025 or H 3799 are passed next year. We will also work to ensure additional pro-gun reforms will be acted on in the Palmetto State.