Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Jessica's Law Plus

I will introduce legislation changing Jessica's Law to allow for the death penalty. Currently, Jessica's law involves sexual crimes against children. A first conviction will have a minimum sentence of 25 years without parole. A second conviction will get life. My bill will allow the prosecution the death penalty option in second convictions. By the way, the last time SC executed a non murderer was in 1972. The condemned man was convicted of rape.

New Taxes? Bill McAbee says NO

Upon a proposal for a new sales tax, my councilman, Bill McAbee stood his ground and voted NO. The resolution passed 5-2. Cindy Wilson joined McAbee. It would create a committee to make plans on spending the new money on our roads with matching funds from the state's infrastructure bank. Why can't government fund these projects with spending cuts elsewhere and from growth increases?

Protect Public Prayer

In the wake of several lawsuit threats on our city and county council, I will introduce legislation protecting any governmental agency in SC's right to public prayer without censorship. This is a state version of Congressman Gresham Barrett's federal bill.

Expect $300 new dollars next year

SC could see up to $300 new dollars in next years budget. I will join Sen. Richardson, Ryberg and others in legislation requiring any new money will go to either the trust funds or roads.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Family Court Reform Public Hearing Oct 26 Wren HS

I currently serve on the SC Senate Judiciary Committee. For the recess, I have been appointed to a subcommittee to review our State's Family Court system, and find much needed reform.

We will have our regional hearing for the upstate on Wednesday, October 26th at Wren High School in Anderson County.

Areas most desperate for reform:

Child Support Children receive their child support regularly when the court handles the payments and when the required parent is cooperative. Currently, it is very difficult to get the deadbeat parents to pay consistently. Reform must address this issue for our children.
Overloaded Court Our courts are overloaded with cases and hearings. What efforts can we make to reduce this load? Mandatory Pre-Marital Counseling? Mandatory Divorce Mediation before filing?

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

10/18/05 School Bond District 4 Tax Increase!

On Tuesday, October 18th you will have the opportunity to vote in a referendum to approve or disapprove a school bond for Anderson County School District 4.

Since this is a special called election, I wanted to be sure you are aware of this referendum.

-new schools for growing community
-school renovations
-competitive facilities
-additional spending
-tax increase
-$27 million indebtedness

It is a pleasure serving you! Sincerely, Senator Kevin L. Bryant

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Katrina Relief

I'm sure you are aware of many honorable charities for victims of Hurricane Katrina. Here is an effort that I have chosen to help. Deep South Camp, a Christian Camp near Slidell, Mississippi which will be used to house victims from Hurricane Katrina. Not only will the camp provide food and clothing, but spiritual encouragement as well. Contributions should be directed to Southside Bible Chapel and labeled "relief fund".

Please prayerfully consider a contribution to this effort.
Southside Bible Chapel
attn: Relief Fund
P.O. Box 61565
Lafayette, LA 70596-1565

Please remember the victims in your prayers.

Below is an update of South Carolina's efforts to assist those affected by Hurricane Katrina.

Disaster assistance is managed by the SC Emergency Management Division (EMD) through an agreement among the southeastern states termed the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC). Under EMAC, states in need put out requests for assistance to every state in the compact. Each state then offers available resources at cost. The state in need then chooses which offers to accept. Generally, offers of assistance from states closer to the disaster area are chosen first because of shorter travel time and cheaper shipping and travel expenses. At this point, most requests for assistance have been fulfilled by states closer to the disaster area by the choice of those states in need.
There has been a request for South Carolina to accept between 5,000 and 10,000 ill and infirm refugees and their families for an unspecified amount of time. A triage center has been set up at the Columbia airport in preparation for their expected arrival to begin later this weekend. There is a multi-agency effort underway to house and sustain those folks.
A quick note about law enforcement assistance:
Louisiana has requested that states only assemble and send a self-sustaining task force made up of 5 strike teams of 21 officers each, 10 cars, communications equipment, and food, fuel, and shelter for 72 hours. Smaller, more piecemeal teams create a logistical strain in equipping and sustaining them. SLED and SCDPS are working with the Emergency Management Division to assemble a task force of state and local officers to meet this requirement.
Below is a breakdown of what is being done at an agency level:
SC Department of Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Services:
* SCDAODAS, along with the Department of Mental Health (DMH) and DHEC are coordinating efforts to assemble a team of counselors and medical personnel to provide assistance to the areas affected by Hurricane Katrina.
SC Dept. of Corrections:
* SCDOC has been in contact with the DOC commissioners and other leadership in Louisiana and Mississippi and has not yet heard from Alabama. SCDOC is ready to send crews or equipment as needed.
* At the request of Louisiana DOC Commissioner Richard Stalder, SCDOC is leading a Cabinet-wide effort to collect non-perishable food items to be shipped by truck at the end of next week.
* SCDOC has offered to take in as many as 600 inmates
SC Department of Health and Environmental Control:
* DHEC has contacted the public health departments in Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi to offer support. DHEC is in the process of mobilizing a field hospital/medical team, with the Anderson COBRA team (a special unit for Chemical, Ordnance, Biological, Radiological weapon of mass destruction response). DHEC nurses, a DHEC Physician and logistic support staff will accompany the emergency medical services, law enforcement, hazmat and rescue personnel from Anderson for this mission.
* At this time, DHEC anticipates mobilizing a second field medical unit, in cooperation with Charleston COBRA team.
* In addition, we are identifying volunteer personnel among DHEC staff in all public health, environmental and administrative disciplines for possible service on these and other missions.
SC Department of Licensing Labor and Regulation:
* SCLLR has an emergency plan in place with SCDHEC to provide for continued medical care for patients shipped from the disaster zone with their Louisiana health care providers. SCLLR is working to expedite licensure procedures for displaced professionals seeking to relocate to South Carolina.
SC Department of Parks Recreation and Tourism:
* No official requests have been received by SCPRT, but the National Association of State Park Directors has asked the State Park Service to stand by and assist, if possible, when Alabama, Louisiana and Mississippi ask for help.
SC Department of Probation Pardon and Parole:
* SCPPP has been in contact with their counterparts in Mississippi and Louisiana. Those authorities are currently in the process of assessing the impact to their respective areas and advise that it may be up to a month before they can determine the extent of the damage and the need for assistance.
SC Department of Public Safety:
* The agency is working with SLED to fulfill a request for a Task Force of officers (5 strike teams of 21 officers each = 105 officers) to send to the Gulf. This would be a combined effort of state and local law enforcement.
* Working with DHEC on triage at the Columbia airport. They are coordinating with Red Cross for shelters for the families. DSS will provide staff to meet with refugees on TANF eligibility for those coming in. The expected number of refugees that DSS will process is 8,000. The refugees will begin to arrive later this weekend and continue until Tuesday.
* Currently there is an EMAC request for task forces composed of 5 law enforcement strike teams: that entails 20 officers, 10 cars, 1 supervisor and a car interoperable communications, and self-sustainment (fuel food shelter, etc.) for 72 hours. The deployment would be for 14 days. Currently one team of half SLED personnel and half Highway Patrol personnell is being formed and another team is being formed by the Charleston Sheriff's Office. Deployment has not been requested at this time. A number of various type units around the state from local agencies are seeking to respond and they are being asked to work with in the EMAC/EMD plan and only respond upon request and approval. We don't have control of this. In all cases, it is imperative that we maintain a certain level of resources in the state while helping the Gulf area.
Dept. of Natural Resources:
* SCDNR Director John Frampton has contacted his counterparts in Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana to offer assistance. They advised that they would contact us if they could determine their needs. Frampton also talked to Ron Osborne at the EMD yesterday and advised him that DNR had staff and equipment that could go to any of the states.
* 40 officers and 20 flat bottom boats are leaving tonight 9/2/05 for New Orleans. The plan is for a 10 day stay.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Gas Prices

-Congressman Gresham Barrett has stated that Congress may temporarily lift the gas tax which is currently $ 0.40 per gallon.

-Also to report instances of price gouging, follow this link:

Saturday, August 13, 2005

Barrett's Place Playground

I encourage all to consider helping with this great community project. Pendleton Pride in Motion is sponsoring the building of this playground in memory of Barrett Beck, a twelve year old Pendleton resident who tragically lost his life too young, and other young people in our community whose lives we want to remember. Through volunteer efforts and donations, the Pendleton area community can build a playground without tax dollars. Plan to be a part of this opportunity to build on our community and work together for healthier children! For more information, visit:

Thursday, July 21, 2005

G'ville News Op/Ed: Property rights need stronger protection

Is YOUR Home Safe?

Op/Ed in Greenville News:

Whether you've got a three-story mansion or a 30-year-old doublewide, it is your home. You work hard to pay your taxes and your bills. You try your best to keep your gutters clean and your grass mowed. You look out for your neighbors, and they look out for you. Your home is the very best that you can provide for your family. Your home has been your castle -- until now. Your constitutional rights just took a serious blow. The U.S. Supreme Court stunned us with a redefinition of eminent domain.

The town of New London, Conn., approved a private development plan designed to revitalize its ailing economy and then purchased most of the property from willing sellers. When a few homeowners refused, the city condemned their homes. The homeowners sued, claiming that seizing their properties violates the Fifth Amendment's Takings Clause. On June 23 the Supreme Court ruled in favor of New London. Consequently, any government entity can lawfully seize private property and hand it over to private developers.

I, along with other members of the S.C. Senate, am in the process of strengthening our state's eminent domain laws. In the wake of this shocking ruling, we are committed to addressing property rights legislation without delay. We will not rest until the New London scenario becomes absolutely impossible in South Carolina!

If you have an opinion on this or any other matter, feel free to post it!

Friday, July 08, 2005

Property Rights: I agree with the State Newspaper (it may be a first)

Un-American land seizure
By EVELYN CLARYGuest columnist

...Why, then, in a country that professes to be a “sweet land of liberty,” can not only the government but any interest with enough money and influential friends seize land from individual property owners? The Supreme Court ruling allowing the city of New London, Conn., to use eminent domain to demolish homes to make way for private development is a crime against freedom...

for the full article click below:

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Register by party (by Rick Beltram Spartanburg Co. GOP Chairman

Rick Beltram,, Chairman, Spartanburg County Republican Party
The Spartanburg County Republican Party and S.C. Republican Party fully endorse legislation to require registration by party. Here in Spartanburg, we have overwhelmingly passed resolutions since 2001 to support this legislation.
With the present system, too many times we find that Democrats are voting in Republican primaries. The Herald-Journal is correct in its assessment that "Primaries are ... the method for members of a particular party to choose their candidate in the general election."
We would urge the Legislature to pass this legislation in the new term to begin in January 2006.
Clearly, the GOP Presidential Preference Primary in 2008 must be a primary for Republicans only. We will see various candidates visiting our state over the next two years. We need to assure these fine folks that they will get nominating votes from Republicans only.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Another Blow to Property Rights!

Cities may bulldoze people's homes to make way for shopping malls or other private development, a divided Supreme Court ruled last Thursday, giving local governments broad power to seize private property to generate tax revenue. In a scathing dissent, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor said the decision bowed to the rich and powerful at the expense of middle-class Americans.,2933,160479,00.html

It appears that Judge Souter's home may be up for grabs.

I can't think of a better place to start!

Saturday, July 02, 2005

I-85 Lane Closure

SCDOT has informed me that on July 11 @ 6PM through July 12 @ 3PM a lane will be closed on the Northbound I-85 near mile marker 12

Thursday, June 23, 2005

Thank you Councilman McAbee!

I want to thank my County Councilman, Bill McAbee, for refusing to accept a budget that includes a tax increase. Even though our County Property taxes will increase, I am grateful for Councilman McAbee for putting principle over politics and dissenting from supporting this year's budget. It is obvious that he is watchful for the taxpayers pocket.

SCGOP: Top 10 reasons why Democrats won't go see Howard Dean

S.C. GOP Press Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:Thursday, June 23, 2005
Contact: Jay W. Ragley(803) 988-8440
Countdown To Dean: Day 6
Top Ten Reasons Why A Palmetto Democrat Won’t Attend Next Week’s Fundraiser With Howard Dean(Columbia, SC) – Today, the South Carolina Republican Party releases its latest Top Ten List: Top Ten Reasons Why A Palmetto Democrat Won’t Attend Next Week’s Fundraiser With Howard Dean.
10. You don’t have anything to wear because Inez Tenenbaum borrowed your red dress.
9. You think a “moderate” Democrat like Ted Kennedy would make a better DNC Chairman.
8. You didn’t win first place in the SCGOP’s Howard Dean Scream contest.
7. You’re on location in France taping action scenes for Michael Moore’s latest film.
6. You’re still blue over John Kerry’s loss in South Carolina by 17%.
5. You have to stand in line for Barbra Streisand concert tickets.
4. You’re too busy assembling “Hillary For President” yard signs.
3. You’re still counting hanging chads in Florida.
2. You’ve heard that Howard Dean hasn’t changed his “lucky” socks in 2 years.
1. Oprah is on.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Recidivism in SC Prisons (by Mike Walker)

Below is a new topic for discussion on recidivism in our SC Prisons. I'll get some stats posted shortly!
"I would like to inform myself about the recidivism rate for prisons in SC. Are there statistics available beyond the normal three year window? I would be very interested in efforts by others to reduce the recidivism rate and what is being done by other states. I believe a 1% reduction in recidivism would be a huge financial boon to SC and a wonderful humanitarian result as well. You may be aware that my wife visits Leath Womans facility in Greenwood every week (as well as visiting other facilities here in Anderson and Columbia on other schedules) to seek to serve the women there and especially to help them transition to outside life. We often offer short term housing in our home for newly released women waiting to get into a treatment center. We are praying for God to enable us to serve exoffenders and offenders to see them stand and be happy and productive citizens.If there is anything that we can do to serve in seeking a reduction in recidivism (even if it is one person at a time) please let us know.God bless you for your labors, you can be sure you are often in our prayers and your blog will help us pray in a more informed way --thank you"Mike Walker

Friday, June 17, 2005

Bryant Named Hero to Taxpayers!

Gov. Mark Sanford has posted a list of Legislators that he considers heroes to the Taxpayer. You can also see the letter written to me!
To view images, click below:

Sunday, May 29, 2005

H. 3777 Geocaching

H. 3777 Geocaching
The subcommittee will meet on Tuesday, May 31 at 10 AM in Room 207 in the Gressette Building in Columbia. According to Senate rules, subcommittees are the only venue in which the public is allowed to participate. I encourage all Geocachers to attend this meeting if possible.
Recently, I have discussed the hobby of Geocaching with several friends and constituents. In the near future, I plan on taking up the activity with my wife, three children and of course our dog, Cookie.

Our society is desperate for any incentive to get us away from our TV sets and video games. Geocaching is a new activity that encourages families to obtain much needed exercise and renews our enjoyment for God’s creation. Geocachers are folks that enjoy the outdoors, our beautiful parks, and significant sites of history. Geocachers use a Global Positioning System, or GPS to find these sites by the use of coordinates instead of maps. There is a program called CITO (Cache In, Trash Out). CITO is responsible for tons of litter picked up by Geocachers each year. Geocaching is part of school and scouting lesson plans all over the country. Corporations, such as 20th Century Fox, Jeep and Magellan, have sponsored contests based solely on the hobby.

The problem is that the hobby has a few “bad apples” that are determined to outlaw this creative hobby. Our committee has viewed pictures of individuals performing disrespectful acts specifically on gravesites however the positive benefits of Geocaching by far outweigh the negative impacts.

H. 3777 as written is much too broad and will have far reaching negative effects. I would compare this legislation to the outlawing of baseball because of a few broken windows. For these reasons, I will not support this bill, unless it is amended with reasonable limitations.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

Tax Cuts (sort of)

The Senate passed today a very watered down version of Governor Sanford's Tax Cut Proposal. The original proposal was an across the board cut from 7% to 4.5% for EVERYONE. The Senate passed a cut from 7% to 5% only for small businesses. Now I've never met a tax cut I didn't like, but I am truly disappointed in the witling down of a good proposal.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Defense of Marriage

Defense of Marriage Amendment Pass 18 to 2 in Senate Judiciary with not much debate. There are some questionable contractual issues that need to be ironed out to pass constitutionality muster.

Monday, April 04, 2005

Half way throught 116th Session

It is hard to imagine that we’re half way through the 116th session of the General Assembly. Since our announcement of candidacy in August ’03, we’ve experienced a great journey and together we can accomplish great things in the SC Senate!

Below is a summary of what’s been happening lately:

Tort Reform
Tort Reform legislation was divided into General Tort Reform and Medical Malpractice Tort Reform. One filibuster wasn’t ended until after 1 AM. Hunkered down, we were determined to hold our ground. The two pieces of legislation will be signed into law by Gov. Sanford next week.
Defense of Marriage
Thursday the Senate voted 34-4 to recall the Defense of Marriage Act from subcommittee and placed it on the Senate Calendar. When the reading clerk reached Bryant, I felt it appropriate to answer, “I do” instead of the traditional “aye”.Uniform Securities Act
I am fortunate to be assigned to the Judiciary Sub-Committee that will manage the Uniform Securities Act. I am especially interested in this bill because of the recent Carolina Investors Scandal. This legislation is intended to reform South Carolina's securities regulations and may help prevent the reoccurrence of the betrayal of trust suffered by hundreds of families in South Carolina.
Just a Reminder…Powdersville BBQ
We are delighted to announce a BBQ in Powdersville with Congressman Gresham Barrett as our special guest. The debt reduction fundraiser will be at the home of Christie and Freddie Zink on Saturday, April 16th. Anyone interested in serving on the host committee, please let us know.
It has been a pleasure to serve you. If you need me, don’t hesitate to get in touch!Kevin L. Bryant*We respect your privacy. If you would like to unsubscribe to the Bryant for Senate e-mail updates, please respond to this e-mail with “unsubscribe” in the subject field.

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