McMaster recalls S.C. General Assembly for more work next week

Published: May. 12, 2023 at 4:25 PM EDT
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCSC) - Gov. Henry McMaster issued an executive order Friday morning recalling lawmakers to the State House next week to tackle what he called “unfinished business.”

The legislative session just ended Thursday.

Lawmakers will take up the Fetal Heartbeat and Protection from Abortion Act, enhanced penalties for illegal gun possession, bond reform and the General Appropriations Act.

The governor’s executive order will remain in effect unless and until modified, amended or rescinded by a subsequent order.

With Friday’s executive order, McMaster became the first governor since Democrat Jim Hodges to reconvene the General Assembly to a special session.

The legislative session ended Thursday afternoon, and the South Carolina House and Senate typically put an agreement in place that outlines reasons they can return to Columbia, such as finalizing the budget. But this year, lawmakers failed to agree on a resolution.

That failure to agree is what allowed McMaster to call them back.

Lawmakers will be coming back ion Tuesday.

McMaster appoints new comptroller general

McMaster named a new comptroller general to serve until state lawmakers vote on a permanent comptroller general.

Brian J. Gaines will serve in that role until the General Assembly elects someone to complete the remaining term of office, which is over three years, McMaster said.

“Mr. Gaines currently serves as director of the executive budget office within the department of administration. He has served in numerous financial leadership roles within state government for over 16 years from the Department of Employment and Workforce, the old budget control board and now the Department of Administration,” McMaster said. “Mr. Gaines is highly respected by everyone by the leadership of the General Assembly, the State agency directors and by me.”

South Carolina Supreme Court Chief Justice Donald Beatty administered the oath of office.

Gaines, 41, resides in Richland County. He is a graduate of the University of South Carolina, holds his master’s degree in public administration, and has earned a certified public manager credential.

The appointment follows the April 30 resignation of former Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom.