The Agenda: Inquiry into Chs. schools; Local car exports to double; Tin foil hats for Limehouse's Sharia law debate

Bright filibusters his own abortion bill

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The steel mill that dominates the skyline of downtown Georgetown will close by the end of September, ArcelorMittal, the company that owns the plant, said yesterday. The plant's 226 workers said they expected things to scale back (it shuttered for two years in 2009), but not a complete closure. Source: P&C, WCIV

House Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter says that after Rep. Nelson Hardwick resigned this week amid sexual harassment allegations, she's already seen some of her colleagues "straighten up and fly right." An independent investigation that was initiated by the speaker's office has since been turned over to SLED. Source: The State

State Sen. Lee Bright, an anti-abortion Republican, filibustered his own bill tightening abortion regulations yesterday after amendments were added to provide exceptions in the case of rape, incest, or severe fetal anomaly. Source: P&C

Meanwhile, on the other side of the Capitol, Charleston state Rep. Chip Limehouse was forced to suspend debate on his bill that would ban the use of 14th-century Islamic law in South Carolina courtrooms as Democratic and Republican lawmakers took to the floor to criticize the hours-long debate on the bill. Some lawmakers even wore actual tin foil hats during debate. Source: P&C WIS-TV

As the investigation continues over what could have caused an Amtrak train to derail in Philadelphia earlier this week, there's a renewed focus on technology mandated by the federal government to be installed by the end of this year that could have sensed the train's excessive speed. Currently, about 250 miles of track in South Carolina is equipped with the technology, called "positive train control." Source: CNN

Start lining up now, after closing down last month after a listeria scare, Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams said yesterday that it would reopen its scoop shops on May 22 in time for Memorial Day weekend. Source: P&C

State Ports Authority officials say that the volume of roll-on/roll-off traffic from car exports will double with the addition of Volvo shipping traffic through the Port of Charleston. Source: WSJ

Even though private law school company InfiLaw has reportedly lost interest in buying Charleston School of Law, one of the school's owners says acquisition by the company remains the school's best hope for survival. Source: P&C

The federal Office of Civil Rights has opened an investigation after a complaint was filed last year alleging discrimination in the admissions process to Charleston County's Academic Magnet High School and Charleston County School of the Arts. Source: P&C, AP

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