Senate Higher Education Committee Hearing
The Senate Higher Education Committee met this week to hold a hearing on Senate bills that will be available for consideration next session. Sen. Josh McKoon (R-Columbus), presented the committee with five bills, followed by Sen. Michael Williams (R-Cumming), presenting two bills. There were no votes taken.
SB 113, allows automatic eligibility for a HOPE scholarship to the children of law enforcement officers, firefighters, or prison guards who have been killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty.
SB 208, provides that the award amount for HOPE scholarships shall be based on the previous year’s average cost of tuition for institutions within the university system. The bill also clarifies that the HOPE amount would vary based on the amount of time a person spends as a student and their remedial and developmental classes would not be included under HOPE.
SB 209, creates a Student Advisory Council and the Faculty Advisory Council to advise the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia regarding issues of concern to students and faculty.
SR 252, proposing an amendment to the Constitution so as to provide for the election of members and reduction in the total membership of the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia.
SR 253, proposing an amendment to the Constitution so as to add a student member to the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia.
SB 215, states no institution within the university system shall increase the cost of tuition for any student seeking an associate or baccalaureate degree beyond the cost established as an entering freshman.
SR 255, an amendment to the Constitution to authorize the General Assembly to regulate the amount of tuition and fees for institutions of the University System of Georgia.
House Rural Development Council Created
HR 389, sponsored by Rep. Sam Watson (R-Moultrie), passed the House today by a vote of 162-0. The resolution creates the House Rural Development Council. This special advisory council will spend the next 20 months trying to come up with ideas for spurring economic growth in the state’s rural counties. Their mission, as stated in the resolution, will be to review the challenges facing Georgia’s rural areas and recommend possible legislation for dealing with these issues. The council will be composed of 15 members of the House of Representatives appointed by the Speaker.
February Revenues Decrease
Revenue collections for the month of February totaled $1.17 billion, for a decrease of $70 million or -5.6 percent compared to the revenue collected in February 2016. Year-to-date, net tax revenue collections totaled $14.23 billion for an increase of $498.4 million, or 3.6 percent compared to the same point last year.
HR 170, passed the House this week by a vote of 165-0. The resolution urges state agencies, medical service providers, health care agencies, research facilities, medical schools, and all interested parties to work toward increasing research, clinical care, and medical education for myalgic encephalomyelitis. Myalgic encephalomyelitis is an incurable disease that causes a cellular disorder characterized by profound fatigue, sleep abnormalities, pain, and other symptoms that are made worse by exertion.
HR 468, sponsored by Rep. Karen Bennett (D-Stone Mountain), would create the House Study Committee on Health in Georgia. Assigned to the House Special Rules Committee.
HR 484, sponsored by Rep. Rich Golick (R-Smyrna), a resolution encouraging all schools, local educational agencies, and the state educational agency to recognize that dyslexia has a profound educational impact that must be addressed and recognizing March 1, 2017, as Dyslexia Day at the state capitol. Assigned to the House Health and Human Services Committee.
Intern Spotlight: Ty Kutcher
After being encouraged by his American government professor, Ty Kuecher decided to apply to the Georgia Legislative Internship Program (GLIP) where he wanted to get a first-person view of how the legislative process worked. He expects to receive experience and networking skills through GLIP. “I’ve never had an internship anywhere before,” says Ty. “It’s the perfect place for getting a foot in many doors.”
Mr. Kuecher is driven by many career interests and is undecided about his plans after graduation. However, “the GLIP experience has already helped me rule out some careers I once wanted to pursue, but has also added others I wasn’t interested in before,” says Ty.
Ty is assigned to the House Budget and Fiscal Affairs Oversight and Ethics Committee. His many duties include running errands, coping and retrieving bills, and attending meetings. In addition to working full time, Mr. Kuecher volunteers with Trees Atlanta. His favorite quote is “Life is what you make it. Always has been, always will be,” by Eleanor Roosevelt.
*Please excuse the wrong name in last weeks title.
Intern Spotlight: Ashley McLaren
For recent Georgia State graduate Ashley McLaren, the Georgia Legislative Internship Program (GLIP) experience has been more of an introduction to the legislative process. “I am grateful the program exists,” says Ashley. GLIP has given her a greater understanding of what legislators do and the impact they have on so many lives. Ms. McLaren feels that overall, “the program is a great learning and networking opportunity for students and recent graduates.”
Assigned to the Senate Budget and Evaluation Office, Ashley’s daily routine consists of gathering data for budget-related analysis, tracking legislation, proofreading, answering phones, greeting guests, and assisting appropriations hearings administration.
Ms. McLaren was an Honors College student at Georgia State and a member of the National Society of Colligate Scholars. She has also spent time studying abroad. Her short-term goals include pursuing an analytical career upon completion of her Master’s, with her ultimate goal being to pursue a Ph.D. in economics. Ashley’s favorite quote is “we should certainly count our blessings, but we should also make our blessings count,” by Neal A. Maxwell.
Information on legislative activities including bills and resolutions as well as webcast of daily sessions in both Chambers and committee meeting are available via the General Assembly website at www.legis.ga.gov
Day 32: The Senate will convene at 10:00 am, the House at 1:00 pm on Monday, March 6.
GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS TEAM
Tom Lewis, Senior Advisor to the President
Julie Kerlin, Director of Government & Community Affairs
Jason Thomas, Assistant Director of Government & Community Affairs
Debbie Jones, Associate to the Director
Georgia State University
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Atlanta, Georgia 30302
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Visit Georgia State University’s Office of Government and Community Affairs:
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