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Bill Number: 392 Ratification Number: 170 Act Number 97 Introducing Body: Senate Subject: Application of county and municipal zoning ordinances to state, county, and municipal agencies
(A97, R170, S392)
AN ACT TO AMEND ACT 653 OF 1976, AS AMENDED, RELATING TO THE APPLICATION OF COUNTY AND MUNICIPAL ZONING ORDINANCES TO STATE, COUNTY, AND MUNICIPAL AGENCIES, SO AS TO ADD REFERENCES IN THE ACT TO PHYSICALLY HANDICAPPED PERSONS, ADD REFERENCES TO PRIVATE ENTITIES UNDER CONTRACT WITH A STATE AGENCY OR DEPARTMENT, TO ELIMINATE THE APPEAL PROCEDURE TO THE BUDGET AND CONTROL BOARD, TO REQUIRE THAT NOTICE BE GIVEN TO THE GOVERNING BODY OF THE JURISDICTION IN WHICH A HOME FOR MENTALLY OR PHYSICALLY HANDICAPPED PERSONS IS TO BE LOCATED AND ESTABLISH A PROCEDURE FOR SITE SELECTION IF THE GOVERNING BODY OBJECTS TO THE PROPOSED SITE, AND TO REQUIRE THE APPROPRIATE LICENSING AGENCY TO SCREEN PROSPECTIVE RESIDENTS OF THE HOME AND PERIODICALLY REVIEW THE HOMES TO INSURE THEIR CONTINUED REHABILITATIVE PURPOSES AND NEIGHBORHOOD COMPATIBILITY.
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
Homes for mentally or physically handicapped persons
SECTION 1. Section 1A of Act 653 of 1976, as added by Act 449 of 1978, is amended to read:
"Section 1A. The provisions of this act do not apply to a home serving nine or fewer mentally or physically handicapped persons provided the home provides care on a twenty-four hour basis and is approved or licensed by a state agency or department or under contract with the agency or department for such purpose. Any such home is construed to be a natural family or such similar term as may be utilized by any county or municipal zoning ordinance to refer to persons related by blood or marriage. Prior to locating the home for such handicapped persons the appropriate state agency or department or the private entity operating the home under contract must first give prior notice to the local governing body administering the pertinent zoning laws, advising of the exact site of any proposed home. The notice must also identify the individual representing the agency, department, or private entity for site selection purposes. If the local governing body objects to the selected site, the governing body must notify the site selection representative of the entity seeking to establish the home within fifteen days of receiving notice and must appoint a representative to assist the entity in selection of a comparable alternate site and/or structure. The site selection representative of the entity seeking to establish the home and the representative of the local governing body, shall select a third mutually agreeable person. The three persons shall have forty-five days to make a final selection of the site by majority vote. Such final selection shall be binding on the entity and the governing body. In the event no selection has been made by the end of the forty-five day period, the entity establishing the home shall select the site without further proceedings. An application for variance or special exception is not required. No person may intervene to prevent the establishment of such a community residence without reasonable justification.
Prospective residents of such homes shall be screened by the licensing agency to insure that such placement is appropriate.
The licensing agency shall conduct reviews of such homes no less frequently than every six months for the purpose of promoting the rehabilitative purposes of the homes and their continued compatibility with their neighborhoods."
SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon approval by the Governor.