Confession: I'm not on Facebook or Twitter; although my phone has the capability, I do not text and do not wish to; I open my e-mail every two or three days, but admit that I don't forward all the entries which carry that request.
March 7 marked the 25th day of the Georgia General Assembly's 40-day 2011 Legislative Session. The House has already succeeded in passing legislation improving our early voting system, increasing the safety of bicyclists, and amending our Fiscal Year 2011 Budget.
The pace at the capitol quickened this week as we worked our way closer to the halfway point of the 2011 legislative session. As committees continued to scrutinize legislation, my colleagues and I in the House passed several important pieces of legislation. The HOPE Scholarship, K-12 education funding, and early voting reform were addressed by the House last week.
We see challenges, problems, conflicts on many fronts and we clamor for quick, obvious solutions. No way.
This week brought some high profile issues to the table, including the budget and a HOPE bill that are putting us on the right track to taking care of the issues most important to Georgians.
This week, a number of bills were introduced that aim to protect Georgians' fundamental rights.
The family of Junior Gee gives thanks to all who visited, brought food, sent flowers, cards or e-mails during our time of sorrow. We want to thank the doctors, nurses, pallbearers and singers.
In a joint session with the Senate, the House of Representatives welcomed Georgia Supreme Court Chief Justice Carol Hunstein to the House as she presented the annual State of the Judiciary address.
It is my feeling that a great injustice has been done to a former county employee.
Many of us watched Larry the Cable Guy interview local citizens as they described the moonshine and car-racing part of Dawson County's heritage on his "Only in America" series on the History channel. Then as I perused the pages of our weekly newspapers, I was very much aware that, just as those early residents did what they had to do in order to make it through a great depression, so are today's residents getting things done in their own way. I want to salute a few, but there's no way to cover them all.
Last year the General Assembly passed the original FY 2011 budget totaling $17.8 billion. That budget directs all state spending from July 1, 2010 through June 30, 2011 and reflects the effects of our unprecedented economic downturn at the time.
A number of high profile bills have been introduced this week that are aimed at responding to the needs of our state's citizens. Georgians, along with voters across the nation, have told their elected officials loud and clear that they want smaller government and less intrusion. Here at the state level, we're working to meet that request.
Any property owner in the state of Georgia may file a "Taxpayer's Return of Real Property." If one feels the tax evaluation of their property the previous year is incorrect.
There are some organizations that would dearly love to work themselves out of existence - no longer needed. I am sure that the small group of nurses and interested residents who initiated No One Alone (then called NOA's Ark) would have been happy to think that its services would not be required 20 years later.
The senate recently voted to override former Gov. Sonny Perdue's veto of SB 1, a zero-based budget bill from the 2010 Legislative Session.
I have one of the most interesting jobs in the world. One day I am advising world leaders on the nuances of international monetary policy. The next day I am consoling a distraught reader who thinks I need to "look within myself spiritually." The last time I looked within myself, I saw my navel. It was full of lint. Never again.
The Woman Who Shares My Name instructed me that this week's column was to be about positive things. She says she is tired of bad news and thought you felt the same way. "Surely, you can find some positive things to write about," she said, "and temporarily take people's minds off all the terrible things going on in the world. I think your readers would appreciate that."
It is a potential killer whose numbers rival the deadly Ebola virus and it doesn't get near the attention it should. Unlike the dreaded illness currently ravaging West Africa this is one with a quick cure.
Rap. Rap. Rap.
I just learned of a book called, "Say Goodbye to your Southern Accent."
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