COLUMBIA — Discussion on a measure that called for the temporary closure of South Carolina State University was postponed until Wednesday by a House panel.
Lawmakers carried over discussion on the proposal, which rattled students and alumni of South Carolina’s only historically black public university, with at least a dozen S.C. State supporters present. The measure calls for the closure of the school for at least three semesters to deal with an estimated $70 million in debt.
Before the committee met, however, Sen. Marlon Kimpson, D-Charleston, told a group of supporters that even if the measure advanced from the House, it doesn’t have much chance in the Senate.
Kimpson addressed the supporters, who were in the Statehouse complex to attend a series of meetings, including one by the Black Legislative Caucus, which voted no-confidence in S.C. State President Elzey’s leadership on Wednesday. But Tuesday’s caucus meeting was canceled due to inclement weather in the Upstate and has not been rescheduled.
Elzey was among those who planned on attending the caucus meeting. He told Kimpson, however, that even if the measure didn’t advance in the Senate, S.C. State must now try to fix the negative image the proposal has created.
“Our students are scared,” Elzey said.