Fueled by my usual Diet Coke, I headed to the Capitol for legislative days four through eight. The hottest item of the week was passing the Amended Fiscal Year Budget that ends June 30th. I voted yes. While I wish more funds were restored, funding was increased for public health, including replacing and modernizing the Georgia Immunization Registry, and for the Quality Basic Education (QBE) program. The budget was fast-tracked, in case we need to suspend session, as we did last year, due to the pandemic.
It now heads to the State Senate, which begins hearings tomorrow.
The Georgia Recorder has a great summary of the changes here.
We convene again on Monday, February 1st, at 10 am for Day 9. You can watch live here.
Bills to Watch
SB 29 requires voters to submit a photocopy of their ID when applying for and returning their absentee ballots. This is a blatant move to make voting by mail harder – not everyone has access to a photocopier. In addition, there’s a very real security risk inherent in sending copies of your photo identification through the mail. Our current system, verifying identity through signatures, has been proven to be accurate.
This bill is assigned to the Ethics committee.
HB 120, the Georgia Resident In-State Tuition Act, has been resubmitted for this legislative session. This bill allows Georgia residents who are undocumented to pay in-state tuition.
This bill is assigned to the Higher Education committee.
HB 146 has also been resubmitted this session, after failing to pass in the Senate. This bill offers three weeks of paid parental leave to state employees, including teachers.
This bill has been assigned to the Health & Human Services committee.
Committee meetings are publicly accessible, and live streamed here.
Disagree, or agree, strongly about a bill? Email and call the members of the committee to state your concerns. Before I vote on a bill, it must first pass through committee!
The next Listening Session will be held this Sunday, January 31st, at 4 PM!
You can pre-register here:
I will be holding Listening Sessions most Sundays at 4 pm over Zoom until the end of the Legislative Session. The next sessions are scheduled for February 7th, February 21st, February 28th, March 7th, March 14th, and March 21st.
Registering once will automatically register you for every Zoom, but feel free to only attend the ones you want!
If you haven’t already, please browse my website, betsyforgeorgia.com.
As your Representative, your concerns are important to me. Please contact me at email@example.com or 404-656-0116 with questions, concerns, or solutions you may have regarding legislation or other happenings in District 54.
To stay updated, follow me on Twitter and Facebook, and follow the Georgia House of Representatives @GAHouseHub on Twitter. Additionally, in-depth information regarding current bills, Georgia’s annual and supplemental budgets, committee meetings, and livestreams from the General Assembly can be accessed via www.legis.ga.gov.
When this is all over, I encourage you and your family to visit our State Capitol and my office, where all constituents are welcome. I look forward to connecting with you!
My office is located at:
18 Capitol Square, SW
409-B, Coverdell Legislative Office Building
Atlanta, Georgia 30334
Thank you for allowing me to serve as your representative.
Representative Betsy Holland
GA House District 54