SC lawmakers are back and without masks for 2022 session

South Carolina News

South Carolina Rep. Stewart Jones, right, R-Laurens, waits to answer a question from House Minority Leader Todd Rutherford, left, D-Columbia, during a debate on a bill that would ban employers from requiring COVID-19 vaccines for workers on Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021, in Columbia, S.C. The bill went from a subcommittee to the House floor during a special session in less than 48 hours. (AP Photo/Jeffrey Collins)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — South Carolina lawmakers are opening their 2022 session with the familiar problem of the COVID-19 pandemic and a more unfamiliar problem of bank accounts bursting with money.

Both the House and Senate are expected to gavel in at noon Tuesday.

They are to meet for 18 weeks through mid-May in the second year of their two-year session Even with the omicron variant spreading, the House and Senate are meeting in person with no mask requirements.

One order of business will be how to spend more than $5 billion of extra tax money, surpluses from previous years and COVID-19 federal relief money.

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