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Hate Crimes, Police Reform Await SC Lawmakers in Last Week

South Carolina Legislature Join Session 05-05-21
Jeffrey Collins/AP
South Carolina senators walk across the Statehouse lobby for a joint session with the House on Wednesday, May 5, 2021, in Columbia, S.C. Senators sat in the balcony for the joint session because of COVID-19 concerns. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Collins)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina General Assembly will start its final week of the 2021 session with several consequential bills on their agendas.

The House has on its calendar a bill to throw South Carolina's name on a list of states calling for a convention to propose amendments to the U.S. Constitution.

The House also may take up a police reform bill that it debated briefly last month before supporters decided to tweak some of proposals.

Neither bill has passed the Senate.

The Senate has a 24-page calendar, many of the bills already passed by the House that could get sent to the governor's desk.

One of the most high-profile proposal s awaiting action is a bill to make South Carolina the 49th state to pass a hate crimes law. The business community in the state is putting pressure on lawmakers to pass the measure..

This is he first year of a two-year session, so bills will stay in the same place they are when the regular session ends at 5 p.m. Thursday.

Even with the regular session ending, lawmakers will be coming back to Columbia several times. They will need to finish the budget and deal with any vetoes by the governor in June.

The General Assembly also plans a special session this fall to deal with drawing new lines for the U.S. House and state Senate and House districts one the full numbers from the 2020 U.S. Census are released.