Palmetto Sunrise: Legislature returns for special session

Lawmakers return to the statehouse this week for a special session to tackle the state’s budget. File/AP Photo/Mary Ann Chastain

COLUMBIA — State lawmakers are scheduled to return to the capital today to tackle how to spend taxpayer money.

Lawmakers failed to pass a budget before the official end of the legislative session on June 4. Senators are now rushing through a continuing resolution that would keep state government funded at current levels until both chambers can agree on the state’s roughly $7 billion budget. It’s unlikely lawmakers will pass the budget before the start of the fiscal year on July 1.

Not everyone wants the Senate to pass the resolution, though. Gov. Nikki Haley rallied her constituents Monday night through social media, asking them to demand their lawmakers pass the budget.

Columbia Democrat Rep. James Smith also issued a statement last week, calling on senators to “do their job,” and just pass the budget. Smith is also among several House Democrats who plan to push for several procedural moves today to take a last shot at a permanent roads funding solution.

In other news:

Bush, Clinton taking the stage in Charleston this week (The Post and Courier)

Bush officially announces he’s running for president (The Tampa Bay Times)

Graham takes presidential campaign to Greer (The Herald-Journal)

Paul in the Midlands, says people have had enough Bushes, Clintons (The Associated Press)

House begins debate this week on spending state surplus (The Greenville News)

High marks for new speaker; Senate split on new leader (The State)

State budget proviso would help pay Catawba Indian Nation bill for schools (The Herald)

Haley vetoes West Florence Fire District bill (Morning News)

More details released in deadly shooting of former Aiken County deputy’s wife (Aiken Standard)