High court won't review Certificate of Need ruling

      By MEG KINNARDAssociated Press

      COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina's highest court won't revisit its ruling on a program regulating the building or expansion of medical facilities.

      The state Supreme Court has denied the Department of Health and Environmental Control's request to rehear arguments over the Certificate of Need program.

      When Gov. Nikki Haley vetoed the nearly $2 million needed to run the program, she said the process should be sorted out in the free market. State legislators sustained Haley's veto, although some House Republicans said they didn't intend to nix the program entirely.

      Hospitals sued. The high court ruled DHEC must administer the program, saying the line-item veto affected only funding, not the existence of a program set out in state law.

      DHEC says the agency is rehiring staff to run the program.

      Kinnard can be reached at

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