House Begins Flood Recovery Response
Ways and Means Committee will Conduct Hearings to Initiate Process
(Columbia, SC) – House Speaker Jay Lucas (District 65-Darlington) issued the following statement regarding the House’s plans to address the historic flood recovery.
“The historic flood that devastated our state nearly two weeks ago proves once again that when South Carolinians are faced with adversity, we prevail. Governor Nikki Haley, Adjutant General Bob Livingston, and the rest of ‘Team South Carolina’ kept our families as safe as possible and prevented our communities from further destruction. As we move forward with the recovery process, the House will take a proactive approach to ensure that South Carolina bounces back from this disaster as quickly as possible.”
Over the past several days, Speaker Lucas has met and spoken with agency officials to begin cultivating a legislative response to the 1,000-year flood. These agencies include, but are not limited to: the South Carolina Army and Air National Guard, Department of Transportation (DOT), Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), Department of Agriculture and Office of Regulatory Staff.
“At this point in time, it is clear that full assessments and exact estimates for the damage done are not yet known and may take time to determine. However, idly sitting back and waiting for these specifics is not an option. It will ultimately be the responsibility of the General Assembly to provide the means and method of recovery.
“As Speaker, it is my intention that the House continue acting in an organized, methodical fashion so that we fully understand every issue. Addressing this matter will be no different. I have asked Chairman Brian White and the Ways and Means Committee members to look into how this disaster has affected our state. In the coming weeks, the Committee will hold hearings with state agencies and other relevant entities to assess both the impacts of the flooding and the potentials costs of recovery. Based upon the overwhelming support our first responders, neighbors, and nonprofit organizations have provided, we owe it to the people of South Carolina to move forward with the recovery process immediately.”
Additionally, Speaker Lucas has spoken with Majority Leader Bruce Bannister and Minority Leader Todd Rutherford to inform them of with this process. Both are in agreement that this is the best course of action.