COLUMBIA — Gov. Nikki Haley has signed into law a measure that prevents a repeat of last year’s legal mess that kicked hundreds of candidates off primary ballots.


Haley praised the law during a ceremony on Wednesday as streamlining the ballot process as well as giving equal access to the ballot for both incumbents and those seeking office. The Republican governor signed the measure last Thursday.


Last year, about 250 candidates statewide were tossed off primary ballots following back-to-back decisions from the state Supreme Court on incorrectly filed paperwork. Legislators in both parties and chambers called fixing the mess a priority for this session.


The law synchronizes the candidate filing process for incumbents and challengers. It also allows those who don’t file properly to pay a fine and remain on the ballot.