Officials from the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce are urging members to support S.229, also known as the Pollution Control Act Fix, by contacting the South Carolina House members representing the areas where their businesses or homes are.
A recent action alert released by the chamber said, "The business community needs to have our voices heard on this important issue. The opposition, which includes extreme environmental groups from around the state, are flooding legislators' inboxes with emails opposing our bill. It is critical that the legislature hears the business community's support for the bill."
The action alert also asked members to use the following form letter in their communication:
"Dear Representative, Please vote to SUPPORT S.229, the Pollution Control Act (PCA) Fix legislation.
"South Carolina citizens and companies should not be at risk of being sued for not having a permit when no permitting program existed or was even required. This legislation reaffirms a 2012 legislative compromise between the business and environmental communities ending these types of lawsuits under the PCA.
"This legislation does not take away citizens' rights to seek remedies for illegal pollution. Citizens can still petition South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) if they think unpermitted pollution occurred to see if a permit was required, and they can appeal that decision to the Administrative Law Court if they are not satisfied.
"There are also a myriad of other legal paths under federal and state law that citizens can pursue.
"Failure to pass S.229 leaves citizens and companies vulnerable to frivolous environmental lawsuits, putting South Carolina's competitiveness at risk. Please vote to SUPPORT S.229."