In my update last week, I mentioned that the criminal law subcommittee I sit on was tackling fentanyl distribution. My subcommittee and the Judiciary Committee, which I also sit on, have moved swiftly on this issue. The bill (H.3503) addresses the crisis by creating trafficking in fentanyl penalties for dealers and others. This is a drug sweeping our communities and one of the dangers is drug dealers are lacing prescription pills and marijuana with it.

Under this bill, judges could imprison violators up to 20 years for a first offense and up to 25 years in prison for subsequent crimes, depending upon the quantity of fentanyl they had in their possession at the time of their arrest. Additionally, fentanyl, or fentanyl-related substances, would be declared Schedule I drugs.

In my experience as a prosecutor, this is what is needed. I expect us to take it up on the House floor this week and it will quickly head over to the Senate as we move to protect our neighborhoods.

Improving Education Outcomes

Last week, I signed on to bill H.3197 to ensure school districts are protecting parental rights and engaging parents in the decision making process. I believe this is important as our schools need involved parents to best educate our children.

Additionally, the Transparency and Integrity in Education Act passed the House Education and Public Works K-12 Subcommittee. Education Committee Chairwoman Shannon Erickson is predicting this bill, H.3728, will be in full committee this week. H.3728 will ensure that our public education system is a fair and open system where instruction is without bias and includes a broad scope of history. I especially like that this bill does NOT create extra work for teachers, but ensures that we have a transparent policy for teachers, parents, and students to maintain high quality education.

Governor McMaster’s State of the State

Governor Henry McMaster gave his annual State of the State address last week. He touted our state’s economic success and growth while outlining a bold, conservative roadmap to ensure prosperity and success for the future generations of South Carolinians. His roadmap includes three pillars: economic strength, education, and protecting our natural environment. I share Governor McMaster’s pride in our State and look forward to proposing and supporting legislation that takes his conservative roadmap and turns it into action so we can make South Carolina a better and safer place to live, work, play, and raise our families!

It is my honor to represent you. Feel free to contact me at or 803-212-6973.