S.C. Gov. McMaster to give State of State address at 7 p.m. today

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COLUMBIA (AP) — South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster is expected to share his priorities for the year Wednesday night at his State of the State address.

McMaster plans to deliver his speech in person despite COVID-19 concerns. The 73-year-old governor was infected with the virus in December, along with his wife.

The speech is given before a joint meeting of House members and senators in the House chamber, which is typically crowded when just the 124 representatives are in the room.

The number of COVID-19 cases in the state have been at record levels the past few weeks as South Carolina has one of the lowest vaccine distribution rates in the country.

McMaster's speech is expected to hit on the same themes as the budget request he made last week. The governor wants lawmakers to set aside $500 million in a rainy day fund for a future crisis, expand broadband internet to all areas of the state and spend more on law enforcement.

McMaster's speech is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. It is the third time McMaster has given the address before a joint session of the General Assembly.