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ESC Reform Overwhelmingly Passes House

Bill restructures our state’s badly broken employment agency

(Columbia, SC) – Today, the South Carolina House of Representatives passed a major Employment Security Commission (ESC) Reform bill – H. 3442 – by a vote of 108-1. House Speaker Bobby Harrell made the following statement about the passage of the bill:

“The gross mismanagement, total lack of oversight and complete failures in accountability at the ESC will come to an end under the reform laws that the House overwhelmingly passed today. It is our goal to change the ESC from a check writing agency to the job placement agency our state needs. For far too long, job placement has taken a backseat to simply throwing more money at our employment problems – today that changes.

“The problems at the ESC were severe and well documented. The recent LAC audit of this broken government agency revealed a recurring pattern of huge failures over the past decade.

“For a government agency to knowingly fail on this grand of a scale is completely unacceptable. Since 2000, the ESC has lost taxpayer money at a rate of $600,000 per day, but failed to alert anyone to this problem. Ignoring multiple state laws requiring notification, the ESC just watched as its Unemployment Trust Fund plummeted from an $835 million surplus to a near $800 million deficit.

“By reforming and restructuring the ESC into a Department of Workforce, our state’s employment agency will now work jointly with our job creation agencies putting our citizens back to work. Today, we made the necessary changes that will bring much needed oversight and accountability to this broken agency. Our state’s unemployed will now have a more responsive and more effective job placement agency working for them.”

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