Legislature scheduled to tackle vetoes, Confederate flag in two weeks

The General Assembly is scheduled to return to Columbia on July 6. File/Grace Beahm/Staff

COLUMBIA — The legislature will return to the capital in two weeks to tackle vetoes and discussions surrounding the Confederate battle flag.

Members of both chambers have been notified that they are scheduled to return to Columbia on July 6; the Senate at 10 a.m., and the House at 1 p.m. House Speaker Jay Lucas did clarify, however, that he may call the House back into session before then, if Gov. Nikki Haley’s vetoes require immediate action, according to the email blast sent to the House.

Lawmakers approved the state’s roughly $7 billion budget on Tuesday, sending it to Haley’s desk. She has five days, not including Sundays and holidays, to veto any items.

The discussion on the removal of the Confederate battle flag from the Statehouse’s grounds is also expected to take place, but where and when remains unclear. House members introduced two bills that call for the battle flag’s removal. But the bills are expected to make it through committees, delaying a final vote potentially for several weeks.

Senators, however, allowed for a bill in that chamber to skip the committee process on Tuesday. That could mean that senators could take the first vote as early as July 6, sending it to House members and potentially settling the issue before their bills make it through committee.