White is out; Sumter's Smith in on powerful House panel

FROM THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Posted 12/5/18

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The Latest on a shake-up in South Carolina House leadership (all times local):12:10 p.m.A lawyer and an 18-year veteran of the South Carolina House has been picked to lead …

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White is out; Sumter's Smith in on powerful House panel

Posted

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The Latest on a shake-up in South Carolina House leadership (all times local):

12:10 p.m.

A lawyer and an 18-year veteran of the South Carolina House has been picked to lead the chamber's budget-writing committee.

Republican Rep. Murrell Smith of Sumter was selected as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee on Wednesday. He had no opposition.

Smith takes over the committee from Republican Rep. Brian White of Anderson. White says House Speaker Jay Lucas removed him because fellow Republicans said they wanted someone who would better carry out the party's agenda.

Smith thanked White for his service and said he would continue to lead the committee the same direction.

The Ways and Means committee gets the first draft of the state budget. Its chairman also sits on the State Fiscal Accountability Authority and the Joint Bond Review Committee which review and approve expensive state projects.

White was reassigned to the Labor, Commerce and Industry Committee and did not get a leadership position.

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10:45 a.m.

South Carolina Speaker Jay Lucas is making a big shake-up to the leadership of the House by changing the chairman of the committee that handles spending.

Rep. Brian White said Wednesday he is being removed as Ways and Means chairman because his Republican colleagues aren't happy with his leadership.

The Anderson Republican has run the committee since 2011. It gets the first crack at the state budget. The chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee also sits on the State Fiscal Accountability Authority and the Joint Bond Review Committee which review and approve expensive state projects.

White says the decision was made by Lucas.

White was appointed chairman by the previous House Speaker, Bobby Harrell, who resigned in 2014 after pleading guilty to spending campaign money for personal expenses.