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4/29/2004 5:02:35 PM
Home School Legal Defense Association
South Carolina--Calls Needed - Help Pass Education Tax Credits

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From the HSLDA E-lert Service...
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April 28, 2004


South Carolina--Calls Needed - Help Pass Education Tax Credits


Dear HSLDA members and friends:

You have a tremendous opportunity to save tax dollars for
homeschoolers! But we need your calls immediately to keep H.B. 4908
alive! The committee vote could be as early as tomorrow.

A very favorable tax credit bill, H.B. 4908, is being considered by
the South Carolina General Assembly, but it is facing fierce
opposition from public school interests. Your calls are needed now to
move this bill out of the House Ways and Means Committee.

Introduced by Representative Doug Smith (R-Spartanburg) and supported
by over 30 co-sponsors, House Bill 4908 would provide income and
property tax credits for tuition paid to public or nonpublic schools,
including homeschools.

Homeschooling families would be entitled to tax credits for expenses
incurred for tutors, textbooks, school supplies, fees for membership
in an association that sets the academic standards for the student's
homeschooling program, and academic lessons. The bill also provides
that tax credits are available for contributions to organizations
providing scholarships to students for educational expenses.
Designated as the "South Carolina Put Parents in Charge Act," this
bill has the strong support of Governor Mark Sanford.

Please act now to save your family's money later!


Requested Action:

1. Please contact all members of the House Ways and Means Committee
and your own state representative with this message:

"Please vote for House Bill 4908, the South Carolina Put Parents in
Charge Act. This bill will empower parents to choose the educational
option best for their children and provide tax relief for families
with school-age children."

Representative Robert W. Harrell, Jr., (803) 734-3144
Representative Larry L. Koon, (803) 734-2963
Representative Thomas G. Keegan, (803) 734-3063
Representative Rex F. Rice, (803) 734-3035
Representative Herb Kirsh, (803) 734-3071
Representative James A. Battle, Jr, (803) 734- 3001
Representative William Clyburn, (803) 734-3033
Representative Gilda Cobb-Hunter, (803) 734-2809
Representative William F. Cotty, (803) 734-4851
Representative Daniel T. Cooper, (803) 734-3014
Representative G. Ralph Davenport, Jr., (803) 734-3098
Representative Tracy R. Edge, (803) 734-3013
Representative C. Alexander Harvin III, (803) 734-3135
Representative Shirley R. Hinson, (803) 734-2951
Representative Kenneth Kennedy, (803) 734-2986
Representative Harry B. Limehouse III, (803) 734-2967
Representative Lanny F. Littlejohn, (803) 734-3007
Representative E. DeWitt McCraw, (803) 734-2992
Representative James G. McGee III, (803) 734-3039
Representative Denny Woodall Neilson, (803) 734-3097
Majority Leader Richard M. Quinn, Jr. , (803) 734-3138
Representative J. Roland Smith, (803) 734-3109
Representative Teddy N. Trotter, (803) 734-3036
Representative Lewis R. Vaughn, (803) 734-3141
Representative Annette D. Young, (803) 734-2953

Contact information for members of the House Ways and Means Committee
can be obtained by calling (803) 734-3144 or by going to
http://www.scstatehouse.net/html-pages/housecommlst.html#way

2. Please forward this e-mail to every homeschooling family you know
who is not a member of HSLDA and urge them to contact the legislators
above.

You can find the name and telephone number of your state
representative by using Home School Legal Defense Association's
Legislative Toolbox at http://www.hslda.org/toolbox


Background:

After four hours of heated testimony by supporters and opponents
before a House Subcommittee on April 20, 2004, the bill was approved
by a 2-1 vote and sent to the full Ways and Means Committee for
consideration. Action by the Ways and Means Committee may be as early
as this week.

Homeschoolers currently pay for the public education system while
they privately educate their own children. This "double taxation" is
unfair. While almost all homeschoolers would like to be free of the
tax burden of public schools they do not use themselves, a
significant number of homeschool leaders are concerned about any
effort to obtain benefits from the government.

Most homeschool leaders agree that vouchers (direct payments from the
government to private or homeschools) are unacceptable because of the
controls and loss of freedom that comes with the money.

With H.B.4908's educational tax credits, parents and individuals who
provide for a child's education would be allowed to keep some of
their tax money that would otherwise have been used to fund public
education.

Educational tax credit legislation in other states can typically be
divided into two categories: tax credits for individuals or
corporations who contribute to a non-profit scholarship fund and tax
credits reimbursing parents for educational expenses incurred for
their children. Arizona passed an educational tax credit law which
falls into the first category while Minnesota and Illinois passed a
tax credit falling into the second category.

H.B. 4908 offers several benefits:

* Educational tax credits will give parents true choice in education -
This tax credit will help reduce the "double tax burden" on parents
who choose private or home education.

* Education tax credits will benefit public schools - By encouraging
students to attend private schools or homeschools, the tuition tax
credit will reduce overcrowded public school classrooms and improve
the student-to-teacher ratio.

* Education tax credits will benefit low-income families - Most
educational tax credit proposals provide a credit for businesses and
private individuals who contribute to a nonprofit scholarship fund,
which are usually dedicated to helping low-income families. This type
of credit provides an incentive to help give low-income families true
choice in their children's education.

For more information on educational tax credits, see our memorandum
at http://www.hslda.org/docs/nche/000010/200308190.asp

To view a copy of the text of House Bill 4908, go to
http://www.scstatehouse.net/sess115_2003-2004/bills/4908.htm

Please call now!


Sincerely,

Dewitt T. Black, III
HSLDA Senior Counsel



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