A citizen activist with a long record of successful legal challenges asked the S.C. Supreme Court Monday to strike down a $2.2 billion road spending plan adopted by the Legislature.
The plan violated a constitutional requirement that requires bills to have only one subject, the lawsuit filed by Ned Sloan of Greenville and his S.C. Public Interest Foundation says.
But the measure in question is deficient legally because it involved financing proposed road and bridge improvements and made changes in the operation of of the state Department of Transportation.
Sloan’s lawyers asked the high court to decide the issue rather than sending the challenge to lower courts, a route that often takes years to resolve.
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The $2.2 billion in road improvements includes repairing the intersection of I-20, I-26 and I-126 in the Columbia area, a congested area that motorists nickname “Malfunction Junction.”
The bill, a stopgap spending plan that would only begin to address road repairs that transportation officials say are needed, was passed in spring after years of stalemate in the General Assembly.
Lawmakers refuse to raise the state gasoline tax and make the motorists who use the roads help fund improvements.
Sloan’s lawsuit is against the S.C. House of Representatives and Speaker Jay Lucas as well as the S.C. Senate and presiding officer, Lt. Gov. Henry McMaster. Neither Lucas nor McMaster could be reached for comment.