Thursday, January 27, 2022

2022 Hometown Legislative Action Day Arrives Tuesday, February 1

Hometown Legislative Action Day will return to its traditional form in 2022 as an in-person, single day event that calls attention to the issues that matter to cities and towns and fosters relationships between state legislators and municipal governments. 

Taking place Tuesday, February 1 at the Marriott Columbia, HLAD will offer sessions highlighting the Municipal Association’s Advocacy Initiatives. In a General Session, Matt Lehrman will discuss how to encourage civility between municipal officials and the residents they serve through meaningful community conversation, and SC Secretary of Commerce Harry Lightsey will speak during lunch. 

Also on the agenda for Hometown Legislative Action Day are topics such as an analysis of the results of the 2020 census for South Carolina’s cities and towns, a roundtable discussion of law enforcement reform with members of the General Assembly, and a highlight of what the SC Law Enforcement Assistance Program and SC First Responder Assistant and Support Team can do for first responders. The Municipal Association of SC has expanded its focus on advocating for the interests of South Carolina’s cities and towns at the federal level, and one of the sessions will feature a panel discussion with members of Sen. Tim Scott’s and Rep. Ralph Norman’s offices. 

Download the app 
The Municipal Association’s new app offers details on training opportunities, advocacy updates and job openings, among other resources. Those registered for HLAD and the Municipal Elected Officials Institute of Government on February 2 can also use the app to follow along with the agenda, connect with the speakers, attendees and get updates. Download the app from Google Play and the App Store. Launch the event app by selecting “More” in the bottom menu. 

There is limited parking for HLAD participants in the parking garage behind the Marriott, which has entrances on Hampton and Sumter streets, for $10 per day, payable by cash. Meeting attendees and hotel guests may not park above level 4-A in this garage, or they will be towed. 

Additional parking is available at the Cannon parking garage located at 1227 Taylor St., one block from the hotel. At the Cannon garage on Taylor Street, there is a special events attendant in the garage from 7 – 11 a.m. Attendees must pay the special events attendant $10 by cash only and place a parking ticket on the car dashboard. 

More information 
Beyond HLAD, there are some other steps city and town officials can also take to keep up with what’s happening at the State House: 
  • Subscribe to From the Dome to Your Home, the Association’s weekly legislative report delivered by email every Friday during the session. The report takes a look at what’s happening with the Association’s Advocacy Initiatives as well as any other legislation with an impact on cities and towns. 
  • Listen to the City Quick Connect podcast, where the Association’s advocacy staff discuss the week’s legislative happenings during the session.

Thursday, January 6, 2022

Join or Renew With an Affiliate Association in 2022

Educational efforts are a key function of the Municipal Association of SC, which offers professional development that allows elected officials and staff to serve their cities and towns better. 

The Association has affiliate organizations that help communities of peers in various fields of local government to network, learn through specially developed training and share best practices and experiences. The affiliate associations have listserve systems that make sharing information and best practices around the state easier and faster. 

The 2021 Annual Meeting of the Municipal Technology Association of SC in Charleston covered topics ranging from cyberattacks to ransomware prevention, cloud computing and legal issues for IT professionals. 

The Municipal Association provides management support to the boards of directors for each affiliate, a group elected by that affiliate’s membership. 

All of the affiliates’ membership applications and renewals for 2022 are now available. The nominal membership costs provide each participant with discounted training registrations and access to that group’s closed listserve. 

The Municipal Clerks and Treasurers Institute, sponsored in part by the SC Municipal Finance Officers, Clerks and Treasurers Association, has trained and graduated officials since 1979. 

The affiliate organizations are these: 

Municipal Court Administration Association of SC 
MCAA provides training for court administrators, clerks of court, municipal judges and other employees involved in court administration. Staff contact: Sara Whitaker

Municipal Technology Association of SC 
MTASC exposes members to a broad range of technology systems, platforms and solutions. It offers training for IT staff, those with GIS responsibilities and employees working in other departments but whose duties include technology services. Staff contact: Sara Whitaker 

SC Association of Municipal Power Systems 
SCAMPS focuses on legislative initiatives, mutual aid and provides training for elected officials, management staff and operational personnel of the electric cities in the state. Staff contact: Elizabeth Copeland 

SC Association of Stormwater Managers
SCASM offers quarterly training on stormwater management policies and best practices. Training addresses topics like proposed changes to stormwater regulations and case studies of innovative practices. 
Staff contact: Sara Whitaker 

SC Business Licensing Officials Association 
BLOA promotes best practices for administering the local business and professional license tax through training, networking and the Accreditation in Business Licensing and Masters in Business Licensing credentials. Staff contact: Elizabeth Copeland 

SC Community Development Association 
SCCDA training focuses on economic and community development needs, best practices and successful case studies. Members come from local and state government as well as private industry, elected positions and volunteer positions. Staff contact: Sara Whitaker 

SC Municipal Attorneys Association 
The MAA annual training, designed for city and town attorneys, complies with the Supreme Court of South Carolina Commission on CLE and specialization requirements for continuing education credits. Staff contact: Eric Shytle 

SC Municipal Finance Officers, Clerks and Treasurers Association 
MFOCTA training covers the diverse job responsibilities of its members. MFOCTA sponsors the Municipal Clerks and Treasurers Institute with the Municipal Association and the Joseph P. Riley Jr. Center for Livable Communities. Staff contact: Elizabeth Copeland 

SC Municipal Human Resources Association 
MHRA helps members stay current on state and federal labor law and court rulings. Its trainings are accepted by national human resources organizations for continuing education credits. Staff contact: Sara Whitaker 

SC Utility Billing Association 
SCUBA trains members on utility billing, collections and customer service. Programs frequently focus on customer service skills, workplace safety and best practices in utility billing and collections. Staff contact: Ken Ivey