Watchdog Report – May 6th

Watchdog Report


This week, I am providing you with a general update on three major government issues:

  • Elections: how and when to vote
  • SC General Assembly: an update on your association’s advocacy agenda
  • Washington DC: Realtors visit the Hill this week


Over the last two reports, I have reported on the candidates for election this year.  But having that knowledge is only important if you plan to vote. 

More than 90% of Realtors are registered to vote.  If you are not registered, it’s not too late to get registered.  You have until May 12 to register and be eligible to vote in the primaries on June 11.  You can download a voter registration application at

The SC General Assembly made it easier to vote early.  You no longer need to declare that you will be absent on election day.  In fact, you don’t even need to mail in a ballot.  Between May 28 and June 7, you simply need to go to a polling place and vote like you would on election day.  However, there are only a few polling places open in each county during the early voting period.  To find the early polling place closest to you, visit

Your Western Upstate Association of REALTORS® has finished screening candidates for the contested primary races in the Western Upstate.  Watch for a REALTOR® Voting Guide in your email before early voting starts.

SC General Assembly

The state legislature wraps up itsr regular session this week on Thursday, May 9, 5 p.m.  They routinely come back later in the year to deal with vetoes by the Governor and other agreed upon legislation.  But most legislation will either be finished by Thursday, or it has to start over in a new session in 2025.

Your South Carolina REALTORS® Association has been working on several agenda items this year.  Below is a status on each bill:

License Law Update: to modernize and address new issues like AI. 

Status: Passed the House and recommended for approval by the Senate Labor, Commerce, and Industry Committee.  Eligible to be considered on the Senate floor this week.

Statewide Framework for Short-Term Rentals

Status: A bill has not passed either House.

Prohibiting Unfair Real Estate Service Agreements: listing agreements that last more than a year, among other things.

Status: Passed the Senate and recommended for approval by the House Labor, Commerce, and Industry Committee.  Eligible to be considered on the House floor this week.

Prohibiting the use of Eminent Domain by Petroleum Pipeline Companies: extend the ban for another year.  In place since 2016.

Status: Passed the Senate.

Extend SC Abandoned Buildings Revitalization Act: extends the tax credit until 2035 and increases it to $700,000.

Status: Passed the Senate and recommended for approval by the House Ways and Means Committee.  Eligible to be considered on the House floor this week.

Your SCR’s Advocacy Team will be hard at work at the State House this week to get the South Carolina Realtor Agenda across the finish line.

Realtors Go to Washington

This week, thousands of Realtors, including many from the Western Upstate, are in Washington, DC, supporting the National Realtor Agenda.  Your REALTORS® Association is focusing on these issues:

Updating the tax law to increase access to homeownership:

  • Decrease the equity penalty, which can help more long-term owners sell without a tax penalty.
  • Attract private investment in revitalizing older homes and neighborhoods.
  • Create a tax credit for building and preserving affordable housing.
  • Support small businesses, like Realtors, by preserving the 199A qualified business income deduction.
  • Support commercial real estate investment by preserving the 1031 like-kind exchange.

Ensure equal access to professional representation and support fair housing:

  • Ensure that veterans have access to representation by allowing VA buyers to compensate their broker directly.
  • Maintain the independent contractor status for Realtors under the Fair Labor Standards Act.
  • Add sexual orientation and gender identity as protected classes under the Fair Housing Act.
  • Reauthorize and increase funding for HUD fair housing enforcement programs.

Let’s thank your fellow Realtors who have taken time away from their families and businesses to support the National Realtor Agenda.  Their work helps at 1.5 million Realtors—including you!

Support RPAC

RPAC is an important element of your Realtors Association’s advocacy program.  I encourage you to support RPAC, and we make it easy to do so—we include a voluntary RPAC contribution on your annual dues renewal.  Simply pay it and you have support RPAC.  If you want to do more that modest amount, that’s easy too

Michael Dey, Director of Government Affairs