Jack Hill: Notes from the Senate

Jack Hill

New laws taking effect July 1

 

Agriculture

· SB 78 — Authorizes the Commissioner of Agriculture to waive any rule of the department on adulteration or misbranding of food when proof is provided the rule can be achieved by other means or the strict adherence would cause substantial hardship.

· HB 49 — Allows three-year licenses for livestock dealers and livestock market operators. A current list must be published by the department. Continues to exempt 4-H clubs and FFA chapters.

Appropriations

· HB 44 — The FY 2018 budget totals $24.9 billion for the operation of the state. Includes continuation funding and appropriates new spending for raises, retirement systems, new programs and additional transportation funds from the recent fuel tax change. Funds a number of human needs improvements.

· HB 202 — Changes the base salary of the governor to $175,000 but only applies to the next elected governor. Law allows legislators to use office allotment for conference travel expenses.

Economic development and tourism

· HB 470—Creates the Defense Community Economic Development Fund that, when funds are appropriated, would promote job development, recruitment and expansion of employment at military installations or in the surrounding community. This grant program could also be used to prepare a community for a federal review like Base Realignment and Closures.

· HB 87 — Allows Secretary of State to extend annual registration of businesses to three years.

Education

· HB 139 — Requires local school systems to place an identifier on every student’s record whose parent or parents are members of the military.

· HB 198 — Requires local school systems that are already providing information on immunizations and health issues to parents of students in grades 6-12 to include information on flu and the flu vaccine.

· HB 463 — Allows Department of Early Care and Learning to establish a nonprofit corporation to support educational excellence, which would be eligible to receive grants.

· HB 338 — Creates position of Chief Turnaround Officer under State Board of Education to work with low-performing schools to create a turnaround plan with local systems using turnaround coaches. Creates an Education Turnaround Advisory Council. Allows for suspension of local school board members of systems failing for five years.

Full transcripts of bills may be found at http://www.legis.ga.gov/en-US/default.aspx

Type the bill number into the box at the top left of the screen and specify if it is in the House or the Senate. The FY 2018 budget (H.B. 44) may be found at http://www.senate.ga.gov/sbeo/en-US/AppropriationsDocuments.aspx.

I welcome any questions you may have. I may be reached at 234 State Capitol, Atlanta, GA 30334; (404) 656-5038 (phone); (404) 657-7094 (fax); e-mail at Jack.Hill@senate.ga.gov; or call toll-free at 1-800-367-3334; Reidsville office: (912) 557-3811.

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