Legislators to discuss ethics report openness

Columbia, SC - COLUMBIA, SC (AP) - Details of ethics investigations would be public information once a South Carolina agency decides to pursue charges under legislation a House panel is scheduled to discuss.

The measure before the House Judiciary subcommittee on Thursday clarifies issues raised last fall after Gov. Mark Sanford's ethics investigation.

At the time, the State Ethics Commission said it couldn't release details of an investigation that yielded 37 charges against Sanford. The investigation was prompted by the governor's disappearance last June to rendezvous with his Argentine lover.

The issue was argued at the state Supreme Court. The justices said Sanford had waived confidentiality rights and the investigative report had to be released to legislators considering impeachment.

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