South Carolina will have a single statewide ballot question and a Richland county initiative on the November 6, 2012 ballot.
The SC Green Party has not taken a formal position on any of these issues, but offers the information below as a nonpartisan service.
Statewide Amendment 1: This ballot question would amend the SC state constitution to change the way that the governor and lieutenant governor are elected. Right now, both the governor and lieutenant governor run separate campaigns. The Lieutenant Governor presides over the state Senate but doesn’t serve in the Governor’s cabinet.
To change the office of Lieutenant Governor, vote YES. To leave the office of Lieutenant Governor as is, vote NO.
If approved, Amendment 1 would mean that the Governor would choose a Lieutenant Governor as a running mate. The Lieutenant governor would cease to be the presiding officer of the Senate.
Beginning with the general election of 2018, must Section 8 of Article IV of the Constitution of this State be amended to provide that the Lieutenant Governor must be elected jointly with the Governor in a manner prescribed by law; and upon the joint election to add Section 37 to Article III of the Constitution of this State to provide that the Senate shall elect from among the members thereof a President to preside over the Senate and to perform other duties as provided by law; to delete Sections 9 and 10 of Article IV of the Constitution of this State containing inconsistent provisions providing that the Lieutenant Governor is President of the Senate, ex officio, and while presiding in the Senate, has no vote, unless the Senate is equally divided; to amend Section 11 to provide that the Governor shall fill a vacancy in the Office of Lieutenant Governor by appointing a successor with the advice and consent of the Senate; and to amend Section 12 of Article IV of the Constitution of this State to conform appropriate references?
A ‘Yes’ vote will require, from 2018 onward, the Governor and Lieutenant Governor to run on the same ticket and be elected to office jointly. As a result, the Lieutenant Governor will no longer preside over the Senate and the Senate will elect their presiding officer from within the Senate body.
A ‘No’ vote maintains the current method of electing the Governor and Lieutenant Governor separately. The Lieutenant Governor shall continue to serve as President of the Senate.
Richland County Ballot Initiative
Richland County will also have a ballot initiative which is broken into two parts. The first question would authorize a penny sales tax within the county to pay for three projects: roads, buses and paths. The second question would authorize bonds payable from the funds raised by the penny tax increase.
Voting YES on Question 1 would authorize the penny sales tax increase and fund the transportation projects. Voting NO would deny the increase and result in cuts in bus service.
Voting YES on Question 2 would enable the county to sell bonds to fund transportation projects, and pay those bonds back from the sales tax increase. Voting NO would deny the bond sale.
Richland County Special Sales And Use Tax
I approve a special sales and use tax in the amount of one percent (1%) to be imposed in Richland County, South Carolina (the “County”) for not more than twenty-two (22) years, or until a total of $1,070,000,000 in sales tax revenue has been collected, whichever occurs first. The sales tax revenue will be used to pay the costs of administrative expenses and the following projects:
Project: 1: Improvements to highways, roads (paved and unpaved), streets, intersections, and bridges including related drainage system improvements.
Project 2: Continued operation of mass transit services provided by Central Midlands Regional Transit Authority including implementation of near, mid and long-term service improvements.
Project 3: Improvements to pedestrian sidewalks, bike paths, intersections and greenways.
Instructions to Voters: All qualified electors desiring to vote in favor of levying the special sales and use tax shall vote YES and all qualified electors opposed to levying the special sales and use tax shall vote NO
I approve the issuance of not exceeding $450,000,000 of general obligation bonds of Richland County, payable from the special sales and use tax described in Question 1 above, maturing over a period not to exceed twenty-two (22) years, to fund projects from among the categories described in Question 1 above.
Instructions to Voters: All qualified electors desiring to vote in favor of the issuance of bonds for the stated purposes shall vote YES and all qualified electors opposed to the issuance of bonds for the stated purposes shall vote NO.