FY 2010 and 2011 budgets couldn't have been balanced without getting some of our hard-earned taxpayer dollars back from the federal government. That's the only thing that kept a lot of elected officials from the dreaded task of raising taxes. Raising taxes in good times is risky business for elected officials; in bad times it's a death wish.
While the steady stream of illegal immigrants continues to flood American streets, our country's leaders do nothing more than offer a political nod to securing our borders.
As most of you know, I seldom dabble in politics in this column. For one thing, my own political views often differ from those of many of my friends and relatives, and, since I am not likely to change anyone's mind, why provoke? But this week, I felt an urge to drop a few comments.
The 2010 Legislative Session officially ended on April 29, but for those of us waiting for the governor's signature, the session has been much longer.
"The military is at war. America is at the mall." This has become a popular phrase used by military service members and Internet bloggers alike to remind Americans that U.S. troops need our support, encouragement and prayers every day.
With the end of school and the start of summer, the Dawson County Parks department is getting ready to open the pool located at Veteran's Park on Hwy. 9 just north of Dawsonville.
Backers of the reckless spending that has permeated Washington have found company in our European neighbors. The mega bailouts on which modern governments rely threaten to drown entire countries in their own debt.
The 2010 Session has ended with the passage of about 250 bills that are now under consideration by Gov. Sonny Perdue.
One of the longest legislative sessions in the history of the Georgia General Assembly finally came to an end on April 29. This final day is known as "Sine Die," a Latin term meaning "without assigning a day for further meeting."
Now that we've reached the end of what has been one of the longest sessions in Georgia's history, it's time to move forward on new policies that will change the face of our state economy. Job creation is at the center of this transformation.
Working with David Ralston as Speaker of the House this session has been a real joy, just like sharing representation duties for Dawson County with David the past several years.
Just like families across our state and country, the Georgia legislature has had to drastically limit spending in order to balance its checkbook.
Last year was our first year of experience under the 65-plus Senior Homestead Tax Exemption program voted in by Lumpkin County voters by over 80 percent.
On the morning of April 15, America's dreaded "tax day," Georgians awoke to the news that their state legislature had voted to completely eliminate two separate state taxes.
As usual, we continue to revel in the beauty of spring: azaleas, wisteria, dogwood, tulips, pansies and green, green, green everywhere. And as usual, we suffer through the pollen that accompanies all that green - but we understand the importance of pollination, so we go through it.
Do you know how much water a family of four uses in one day?
In case you haven't noticed, it's an election year. Soon, those of you who are responsible citizens will begin receiving prerecorded phone calls from candidates and their supporters asking for your vote, and your mailbox, well, it will begin to fill up with mailers from candidates asking for your vote, too.
Thank you for your leadership in making the difficult decision to close school last week because of the weather.
Last week, Winter Storm Leon brought snow and ice to many parts of our great state. Leon's impact on the metro Atlanta area was particularly harsh.
Columbia University's John McWhorter lectures on English linguistics and he, along with other linguists, are excited people these days. That is good because I would hate to think of them being bored.
My fellow Georgians, in order to keep my national certification as a modest and much-beloved columnist, it is a requirement that I submit to you annually a State of the Column message. This I do today. (Yea! Clap! Clap! Clap!)
Since I can't get out and about too much these days and since the weather has been too cold to be out and about much anyway, I decided to share some email chatter that might make you smile.
Every January, legislators from across the state convene at the Georgia State Capitol to set the course for Georgia's future. Because 2014 is the second half of a legislative biennial term, bills that did not pass in 2013 are still eligible for consideration in addition to the new bills introduced this year - which means legislators have a significant pile of work (literally, when you think about the stacks of printed bills on our desks...) ahead of us.
The purpose of this letter to the editor is to request the residents of Dawson County to assist me in contacting our local and state officials to work toward improving the unsafe intersection of Hwy. 53 and Hugh Stowers Road.
Gov. Nathan Deal gave his annual State of the State address to a joint session of the General Assembly on Jan. 15. The annual event takes place in the House of Representatives and is attended by members of the House, Senate, State Supreme Court Justices, State Court of Appeal Judges and the State's Constitutional Officers.
I read a news report this week that says while we are living longer in the U.S., people in other countries are living even longer. Bummer.