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Voices’ Legislative Update – 3/19/18

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Hi there.

I have a confession to make: I like the legislative session. I know that sounds whacky, and probably beyond unhealthy, but I do. I love the fact that all sorts of people, ideas, beauty queens, and mascots come together every year for a few months under the oddly-shaped roof of the same building. I love the weird and unexpected conversations, the gamesmanship, and the excellent wit. I love the grubby shelf where many of us leave our coats, and I love the various areas where different lobbyists and advocates hang out:  Regents Row, K-12 Corner, Criminal Justice Lane, and Birkenstock Alley, to name a few. I love the fact that the elevators are so slow that you could climb all the way from the basement to the top of the rotunda six times before catching the lift, and I love the fact that people really do see our government as their own. I like bumping into the minority leader, the Governor, or a person dressed like a peanut with equal frequency, and I love the fact that pretty much everyone down there truly wants our state and the world to be a better place — whatever that means to each of them.

Not only is it an interesting place, but it is a mixing bowl full of optimists. For every defeat, we brush ourselves off and try again. People may disagree on one issue, but be the strongest of allies on another. It is the crucible of change, the foundation of futures, and for many of us, our makeshift home-away-from-home. When it ends, I feel sad for a few months, and spend countless random moments in check-out lines, at red lights and in the shower wondering if I did enough, smiled enough, or made a difference.

But I am not there yet. We still have 5 legislative days to go, and we need to get as much done as we can, because good policy builds on good policy. So, with that in mind, please take a minute, gather your hopeful self together, and act on the 2 Minute Ask at the end of this update. It is especially now that we need your help to make the state the best place possible for kids!

Polly

 

 


 

juvenile justice

 

HB 258 (Powell-32nd) Increases penalties for aggravated assault where a person 17 years old or older discharges a firearm upon a peace officer while the peace officer is engaged in, or on account of the performance of, his or her official duties. The bill also significantly increases penalties for obstructing or resisting public safety officials. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE.  Senate Public Safety Committee.

HB 670 (Powell-32nd) Adds one legislative representative to the Georgia State Council for Interstate Juvenile Supervision and clarifies that the Speaker of the House and the President of the Senate each makes one such appointment. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. PASSED SENATE.

HB 740 (Nix-69th) Requires local school systems to conduct a multi-tiered system of supports, such as response to intervention, (unless the student possessed a weapon, drugs, or other dangerous instrument or his/her behavior endangers the physical safety of students or school personnel) for a student in pre-school through third grade prior to expelling or suspending for five or more consecutive or cumulative days. If the student has an Individualized Education Program (IEP) or a 504 plan under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, then the school or program shall also convene an IEP or Section 504 meeting to review appropriate supports being provided as part of those plans. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 763 (Nix-69th) Expands the student attendance protocol committees to assess school climate as well.  Also requires local boards of education to report aggregated student discipline data (in addition to student attendance rates) to the committee and the State Board of Education at the end of each school year. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Assigned to the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

HB 765 (Thomas-56th) “C.J.’s Law”- Makes a felony of hit and run accidents that result in serious injury (the crime of serious injury by vehicle), punishable by imprisonment from one to ten years. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 890 (Fleming-121st) Makes it a misdemeanor to use an emergency exit after having shoplifted. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

SB 315 (Thompson-14th) Defines the crime of unauthorized computer access, placing it alongside the crime of computer password disclosure. Denotes the penalty for these crimes as a misdemeanor of high and aggravated nature. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

SB 348 (Harper-7th) Allows campus policemen and other security personnel who are regular employees of the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) and certified by the Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training Council to have the power to make arrests for offenses committed upon any property under the jurisdiction of the TCSG and for offenses committed upon any public or private property within 500 feet of TCSG property. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

SB 368 (Kirk-13th) Allows the Criminal Justice Coordinating Council to provide technical support and grant-writing assistance to any local law enforcement agency when the council finds that the local law enforcement agency would otherwise lack access to adequate technical support and assistance. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Recommended Do Pass by the House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee. The bill now rests in House Rules Committee.

HR 1260 (Ballinger-23rd) Creates the House Study Committee on Juvenile Court Judges. STATUS: Adopted.

 

 

vulnerable youth

HB 344 (Dempsey-13th) Allows certain parties in a case concerning a child support order to request a genetic paternity test from the Department of Human Services. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. PASSED SENATE. Must return to the House for agreement.

HB 655 (Williams-145th) Requires every public school to post a sign containing the toll-free telephone number operated by the Division of Family and Children Services of the Department of Human Services to receive reports of child abuse or neglect. The bill was amended to include language from HB 762 which requires annual age-appropriate sexual abuse and assault awareness and prevention education in kindergarten through grade 9 and that professional learning and in-service training may include programs on sexual abuse and assault awareness and prevention. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 732 (Silcox-52nd) Expands the offense of trafficking an individual for sexual servitude to include individuals who pay for such servitude and solicit and pay for it from people 16 years old or older. Essentially the same as SB 335, which is currently in House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The bill will be on the House floor for a vote this MONDAY.

HB 762 (Cantrell-22nd) Requires annual age-appropriate sexual abuse and assault awareness and prevention education in kindergarten through grade 9 and that professional learning and in-service training may include programs on sexual abuse and assault awareness and prevention. STATUS: Recommended Do Pass by the House Education Committee. The bill did not cross over, but the language was amended to HB 655.

HB 834 (Ballinger-23rd) Allows a tenant to terminate his/her rental or lease agreement effective 30 days after providing the landlord with a written notice of termination when a civil family violence order or criminal family violence order has been issued. The notice must be accompanied by a copy of the applicable civil or criminal family violence order. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 891 (Gilliard-167th) Prevents discrimination against blind persons by the courts, Department of Human Services, or a child-placing agency in matters relating to child custody, guardianship, visitation, placement, or adoption. STATUS: House Judiciary Committee. The bill did not cross over but the bill will be heard (but not voted on) in committee this MONDAY.

HB 897 (Efstration-104th) Revises the “Uniform Power of Attorney Act.” Provisions relevant to children currently state that when power of attorney is granted, that the person granted the power of attorney must perform the acts necessary to maintain the customary standard of living of the principal, the principal’s spouse, the principal’s minor children, the principal’s adult children who are pursuing a postsecondary school education and are under 25 years of age. This bill provides that, if there has been an established pattern of payments or an indicated a clear intent to make payments for the children or the adult descendants who are under 25 years of age, or not the principal’s children, and pursuing a postsecondary school education, those payments must be fulfilled and maintained appropriately. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The bill will be on the House floor for a vote this MONDAY.

HB 927 (Nimmer-178th) The original content of this bill was amended to HB 972 and replaced with content from SB 351, which expands from 4 to 8 the number of nurses that can a physician can delegate the authority to perform certain medical acts through a Nurse Protocol Agreement.  The bill also eliminates the criteria of “life threatening situations” as a determining factor as to whether a so delegated nurse can order radiographic imaging tests. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Assigned to Senate Health and Human Services Committee.

HB 972 (Willard-51st) Allows the Division of Family and Children Services to offer extended care youth services to youths between 18 and 21 years of age, provided that extended care youth services are in the best interests of such child, adopting a transition plan for such child, ensuring the provision of developmentally appropriate services and supports consistent with such plans, and determining whether reasonable efforts are being made to transition such child to living independently.  A child may terminate a voluntary placement agreement and stop receiving extended care youth services at any time. The bill was amended to also include the contents of HB 927 which requires DFCS, upon placement of a child, to provide the caregiver, foster parent, pre-adoptive parent, or relative providing care for such child with the following information in writing: A copy of or recommendations from the child’s most recent physical and dental examinations and any available information on the child’s known medical conditions and current medications; the child’s most recent developmental assessment, trauma assessment, and psychological evaluation; any court scheduling order or the dates and times for any scheduled hearings relating to the child; and health insurance information for the child, including the child’s Medicaid number. In addition, DFCS must provide the caregiver with an explanation of the process for enrolling the child in school and any information necessary to complete the process; a description of any financial assistance for which the caregiver may be eligible, including any financial assistance available for child care; a description of the reasonable and prudent parenting standard defined in Code; and contact information for a county or district DFCS office. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Assigned to Senate Health and Human Services Committee.

HB 982 (Nimmer-178th) States that if the court finds, within six months of the date of such child’s removal from his or her home, that the diligent search efforts by DFCS have not resulted in identification of any relatives or fictive kin who are willing to provide a permanent home for such child, and that removal of the child from the foster parent would be detrimental to such child’s emotional well-being, the court may excuse DFCS from the continuing duty to search for relatives or fictive kin. The bill also states that DFCS can file a petition to terminate parental rights if the child has been in foster care under the responsibility of DFCS for a cumulative period of 12 months or longer and the parent substantially neglected or willfully refused to remedy the circumstances that caused the child to be in foster care. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Health and Human Services Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 983 (Price-48th) Requires DFCS protocol to include a requirement that on a third or subsequent allegation of child abuse, a pediatric physician or other appropriate medical personnel shall provide a medical review of the case and a medical evaluation of the child, if deemed necessary by the physician or medical personnel.  STATUS: House Juvenile Justice Committee. The bill did not cross over, but will have a hearing (without a vote) in committee this MONDAY.

SB 39 (Unterman-45th) Increases the penalty provisions relating to pimping and pandering.  The bill also requires registration on the State Sexual Offender Registry when an individual is convicted for the second time for pandering. The bill is the same as HB 732. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee.

SB 127 (Kennedy-18th) When a victim in a case has made a written request to the prosecuting attorney to be notified of all proceedings and has provided contact information to the prosecuting attorney, and such victim asserts that he or she was not provided notification of a proceeding, he or she may file a motion requesting to be heard on such matter.  STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

SB 236 (James-35th) Allows the prosecuting attorney to provide a copy of the traffic citation and all pertinent documents to the county department of family and children services when certain offenders are convicted for endangering a child by driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs in order to aid in an investigation of possible child abuse. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Juvenile Justice Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

SB 336 (Unterman-45th) Provides that when a subpoena is issued for production of electronic communication service records for computer or electronic devices that are used for certain offenses against minors, the provider of the service shall not provide notice of such subpoena to the subscriber or customer of such service. The bill was amended to add some language from HB 623 which authorizes, but does not mandate, DECAL, DCH, DHS and DBHDD to use the rap back service (the retention of fingerprints in a secure database) for real-time updates on the criminal activity of those they employ, contract or license.   STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Recommended Do Pass by the House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee. The bill will be on the House floor for a vote this MONDAY.

SB 427 (Kennedy-18th) Requires s court’s final determination of child support to take into account the obligor’s earnings, income, and other evidence of the obligor’s ability to pay (including whether or not the obligor is incarcerated). The court shall also consider the basic subsistence needs of the parents and the child for whom support is to be provided. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Recommended Do Pass by the House Judiciary Committee. The bill now rests in House Rules Committee.

SR 774 (Stone-23rd) Creates the Joint Study Committee on Adoption Expenses. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Recommended Do Pass by the House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee. The bill now rests in House Rules Committee.

SR 146 (Kennedy-18th) Constitutional amendment providing for certain rights for victims who have suffered or been harmed due to a criminal act by an adult or juvenile. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

 

 

HB 673 (Carson-46th) Prohibits driving while: conducting wireless communication without using a hands-free accessory, using more than a single touch or swipe of a finger on a wireless device to initiate or terminate communication; reaching for a wireless telecommunications device in such a manner that requires the driver to maneuver in such a way that he or she is no longer in a seated driving position properly restrained by a safety belt, watching motion upon the screen of a wireless telecommunications device other than those related to the functioning or navigation of the vehicle. Violation will be considered a misdemeanor and shall be punishable with a fine of at least $150.00. Upon a second offense the driver shall be required to complete a defensive driving course. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Assigned to Senate Judiciary Committee. The bill was heard in committee but no action was taken.

HB 697 (Taylor-173rd) Extends an exemption from state sales and use tax for one additional years (up to June 30, 2019) regarding the sale or use of tangible personal property to certain nonprofit health centers, including some volunteer centers which serve indigent patients. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Finance Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 743 (Clark-98th) “Jeremy Nelson and Nick Blakely Sudden Cardiac Arrest Prevention Act”-Requires the GA DOE to develop and post on its publicly accessible website guidelines and relevant materials to inform and educate student, parents, guardians and coaches participating in or desiring to participate in an interscholastic athletic activity about the nature and warning signs of sudden cardiac arrest. Public and private schools must also hold informational meetings in the subject and parents/guardians must sign a form acknowledging that they have reviewed the information.  Protocols are also established for removing students who faint, pass out or exhibit any other symptoms possibly related to cardiac issues from participation. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 769 (Jasperse-11th) Creates the Rural Center for Health Care Innovation and Sustainability within the Department of Community Health’s (DCH) State Office of Rural Health, to be housed at a postsecondary institution within the state. It will serve as a central health data repository for collection and dissemination of health data from state health agencies, including but not limited to DCH, the Department of Public Health, and the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities, to conduct health data analytics to determine rural health care needs for planning purposes, including determining current and future health care work force needs. The bill was also amended with language from SB 31, addressing in-hospital pharmacists. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. PASSED SENATE. Must return to the House for agreement.

HB 844 (Houston-170th) Expands the membership of the Georgia Commission on Hearing Impaired and Deaf Persons from 7 to 10 members. It also creates a multiagency task force to establish a system of collaborative governance responsible for making recommendations to the General Assembly and the Governor regarding improvements to the statewide system of developmental and educational services that support age-appropriate language and literacy proficiency for children who are deaf or hard of hearing from birth to third grade. The bill also provides for a state-wide coordinated longitudinal data management system for all children who are deaf or hard of hearing and requires integrated and seamless services from birth through literacy. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. PASSED SENATE.

HB 909 (Silcox-52nd) Allows the Department of Public Health to establish separate criteria for perinatal facilities (meaning a hospital, clinic, or birthing center that provides maternal or neonatal health care services) levels of maternal care and neonatal care. Such criteria may include, without limitation, data collection and reporting, arrangements for patient transportation, and protocols for coordination with and referral of patients to and from other health care facilities. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. PASSED SENATE.

HB 978 (Nimmer-178th) Provides for automated traffic enforcement devices in school safety zones. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. The bill was heard by the Senate Public Safety Committee this past week but no action was taken.

HB 1051 (Teasley-37th) Exempts direct primary care agreements between physicians and patients from regulation as insurance. STATUS: House Insurance Committee.

SB 118 (Unterman-45th) Changes the age limit for coverage for autism spectrum disorders for an individual covered under a policy or contract from six years old or under to 21 years old or under. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. PASSED HOUSE by substitute, so must return to the Senate for agreement.

SB 318 (Rhett-33rd) Requires the Department of Community Health to create a one-year pilot program to examine the execution of a physician’s certificate for emergency examination of a person for involuntary evaluation and treatment for mental illness or alcohol or drug abuse based on consultation with an emergency medical technician or paramedic who has personally observed the person. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Health and Human Services Committee.

SB 325 (Kirkpatrick-32nd) The bill was gutted and language replaced with provisions relating to bariatric surgery and step therapy protocols. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. The substitute was recommended Do Pass by the House Health and Human Services Committee. The bill now rests in House Rules Committee.

SB 351 (Unterman-45th) Expands from 4 to 8 the number of nurses that can a physician can delegate the authority to perform certain medical acts through a Nurse Protocol Agreement.  The bill also eliminates the criteria of “life threatening situations” as a determining factor as to whether a so delegated nurse can order radiographic imaging tests.  The content of this bill has replaced the original content of HB 927. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Health and Human Services Committee.

SB 357 (Burke-11th) Establishes the Health Coordination and Innovation Council of the State of Georgia (to be assigned to the Office of Planning and Budget for administrative purposes), with a director of health care policy and strategic planning who reports directly to the Governor. The bill also requires a number of health-related boards, councils and the like to report on certain health related data. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. PASSED HOUSE by substitute, so must return to the Senate for agreement.

SB 364 (Hufstetler-52nd) Authorizes a higher supervisory ratio for physician assistants who have completed a board approved anesthesiologist assistant program. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Recommended Do Pass by the House Health and Human Services Committee. The bill now rests in House Rules Committee.

SB 437 (Payne-54th) Provides that when a minor child is a candidate for non-resuscitation, an order not to resuscitate may be issued with the oral or written consent of the minor’s parent.  STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Juvenile Justice Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

HR 1417 (Powell-32nd) Creates the Joint Study Committee on Cultivation, Manufacture, and Dispensing of Medical Cannabis Low THC Oil. STATUS: House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee.

HR 1160 (Hill-3rd) Creates the House Study Committee on Risks Associated with Kratom. STATUS: Recommended Do Pass by House Special Rules Committee. The bill now rests in House Rules Committee.

HR 1363 (Cooper-43rd) Urges the United States Congress to amend the Controlled Substances Act of 1970 so as to reclassify marijuana as a Schedule II drug so that its medical benefits and effects may be researched or, if Congress is unwilling to reclassify marijuana, to enact the Marijuana Effective Drug Study Act (MEDS Act). STATUS: Adopted.

HR 1582 (Cooper-43rd) Recognizes March, 2018, as Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood (SUDC) Awareness Month at the state capitol. STATUS: Adopted.

 

 

HB 494 (Dempsey-13th) Authorizes the use of hearsay in preliminary hearings regarding emergency closure of an early care and learning program or the emergency placement of a monitor or monitors and adds certain misdemeanors to the definition of “crime” for purposes of background checks. The bill also provides that background checks are not valid if an individual has been separated from employment from an early care and education program for more than 180 consecutive days. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 513 (Dickerson-113th) Requires the Department of Human Services to develop a sign to be posted at any medical facility stating that such facility is an authorized location to leave a newborn child. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. PASSED SENATE. Must return to the House for agreement.

 

education

HB 392 (Fleming-121st) Allows funding for students taking dual credit courses (Move on When Ready) at eligible postsecondary institutions which use nonstandard term systems to be eligible for payment for up to five nonstandard terms per academic year. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Assigned to Senate Higher Education Committee.

HB 713 (Chandler-105th) Lowers eligibility requirements for homeschooled children for the HOPE scholarship from scoring within the 92nd percentile on the ACT or SAT to having scored within the 91st percentile. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Higher Education Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 718 (Scott-76th) Excuses a maximum of five school day absences per school year, for no more than two school years, of students with parents in service of the armed forces of the United States, the Reserves, or the National Guard or veterans to attend therapy sessions as recommended by a licensed physician or psychologist. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 739 (Williams-168th) Names the act requiring the Professional Standards Commission to adopt and implement a process for military spouses to qualify for temporary certificates or expedited certificates upon moving to the state  as the “Tracy Rainey Act”. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 759 (Turner-21st)  Revises eligibility for the Georgia Special Needs Scholarship Program to state that the student is not eligible if the student previously qualified for the scholarship. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Assigned to the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

HB 787 (Hilton-95th) Allows state charter schools may receive services from regional educational service agencies (RESAs); includes the use of flexible and student centered accountability systems in the principles and standards for charter school authorizers; develops individualized measures for virtual students beyond the sole reliance on standardized tests; changes the state charter supplement so it is based on the statewide average local revenue rather than the average of the lowest five school systems; adjusts the statewide average total capital revenue; and requires the capital revenue calculation be made for virtual charters if they provide computer hardware, software and the like. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. The bill was heard by the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

HB 852 (Smith-41st) Allows a student who has attended a public school for more than half of the school year and who moves during the school year to another attendance zone within the local school system to continue to attend the initial public school through the completion of the school year; provided that the student has not had chronic disciplinary problems. The parent is responsible for transportation of the student to and from the school. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill will be on the House floor for a vote this MONDAY.

HB 853 (Dempsey-13th) Provides that children placed in psychiatric residential treatment facilities as a result of a physician’s order may not be charged tuition. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Assigned to the Senate Education and Youth Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

HB 1007 and HR 1341 (Cox-108th) Constitutional Amendment and Enabling legislation creating the Student and School Safety Fund and related commission to impose, collect, and dispose of additional fees for violation of certain criminal and traffic laws. Collected funds will be used to implement and enhance student and school safety measures. STATUS: House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee.

SB 82 (Jackson-2nd) Clarifies that being a member of the Georgia National Guard or a member of a reserve component of the armed forces of the United States located in Georgia is classified as a legal resident of Georgia for the purposes of eligibility for HOPE scholarships and grants. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. PASSED HOUSE.

SB 330 (Wilkinson-50th) Based the agricultural education program provided in this state on the nationally recognized three-component model of school based agricultural education: daily instruction in an organized classroom and lab environment; hands-on, real-world learning opportunities through the supervised agriculture experience (SAE) program; and leadership and learning opportunities through participation in the Future Farmers of America. The bill also requires the GA Department of Education to conduct a pilot program, beginning in the 2019-2020 school year, for agricultural education in six elementary schools in this state with the goal of determining whether and how to implement an elementary agricultural education program state wide. The bill also requires the Professional Standards Commission to extend in-field certification for agricultural education to include kindergarten through grade five by July 1, 2018. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. PASSED HOUSE by substitute, so must return to the Senate for agreement.

SB 339 (Ligon-3rd) Requires the establishment of free speech policies for institutions of the Georgia university system. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Recommended Do Pass by the House Judiciary Committee. The bill now rests in House Rules Committee.

SB 377 (Strickland-17th) Transfers the State Workforce Development Board from the Department of Economic Development to the Technical College System of Georgia. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Recommended Do Pass by the House Industry and Labor Committee. The bill will be on the House floor for a vote this MONDAY.

SB 405 (Millar-40th) Creates grants up to $1500 per semester for non-HOPE students whose family income does not exceed $48,000.00, is enrolled in an institution of the University System of Georgia, has received a Pell scholarship, achieved certain academic criteria, and is employed at least 15 hours per week during the semester.  STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Higher Education Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this TUESDAY.

HR 1414 (Jasperse-11th) Creates the House Study Committee on School Security. STATUS: Recommended Do Pass by House Special Rules Committee. The bill will be on the House floor for a vote this MONDAY.

HR 1467 (Stover-71st) Constitutional Amendment authorizing the use of educational special purpose local option sales and use taxes for school security purposes, namely school security capital outlay projects and improvements and armed security personnel and the necessary equipment for the armed security personnel. STATUS: House Education Committee.

HR 1472 (Gurtler-8th) Urges all local boards of education to implement the provisions of Georgia law regarding the arming of school personnel. STATUS: House Rules Committee.

HR 1591 (Dukes-154th) Creates the House Study Committee on Historically Black Colleges and Universities. STATUS: House Hopper.

HR 1036 (Kendrick-93rd) Urges the State of Georgia to fund a public awareness campaign in support of computer science education. STATUS: Recommended Do Pass by the House Education Committee. The bill will be on the House floor for a vote this MONDAY.

SR 953 (Gooch-51st) Creates the Joint Study Committee on Evaluating the School Year Calendar of Georgia Public Schools. STATUS: Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Economic Development and Tourism Committee.

SR 972 (Miller-49th) Encourages local educational agencies to support Georgia’s talented and gifted students by complying with all State Board of Education and Georgia Professional Standards Commission guidelines for gifted education. STATUS: Senate Education and Youth Committee.

SR 977 (Williams-39th) Creates the Senate Study Committee on Historically Black Colleges and Universities. STATUS: Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Higher Education Committee.

 

misc

HB 121 (Efstration-104th) Changes provisions relating to minor or unborn beneficiaries of trusts, among other things. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 605 (Spencer-180th) Expands existing law to allow a survivor of childhood sexual abuse to bring a civil action for recovery of damages within 4 years from the date the plaintiff knew or had reason to know of the abuse and any injury. In addition, the bill allows a survivor between the age of 23 and 38 to bring a civil action for damages suffered as a result of childhood sexual abuse committed on or after July 1, 2018. The bill also allows plaintiffs of any age who were prevented (as a result of the passage of time) from filing a civil action for recovery of damages resulting from childhood sexual abuse to bring an action against an entity which had responsibility for the plaintiff, knew or should have known of the alleged conduct, and intentionally concealed evidence of such conduct. The plaintiff must show by clear and convincing evidence that the entity intentionally or with conscious indifference concealed evidence of the abusive conduct, and the action must be initiated within 1 year from the date the plaintiff discovered such evidence. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. The bill was heard by the Senate Judiciary Committee this past week but no action was taken.

HB 623 (Welch-110th) Allows the Georgia Crime Information Center to retain fingerprints of certain individuals under certain circumstances and submit such fingerprints to the Federal Bureau of Investigation relating to social services. This bill was tightened up to include only DCH, DECAL, DBHDD and DHS and then amended to SB 336. STATUS: FAILED HOUSE VOTE. The bill language was amended to SB 336 in a House subcommittee this past week. SB 336 will be heard in the full House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee this MONDAY.

HB 703 (Hitchens-161st) Creates the Office of Public Safety Officer Support within the Department of Public Safety. This office would provide counseling services or any other critical incident support services to all requesting public entities that employ public safety officers for incidents, including situations involving death or other tragedies. STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. Recommended Do Pass by the Senate Public Safety Committee. The bill now rests in Senate Rules Committee.

HB 831 (Rogers-10th) Creates the Employment First Georgia Council, to be administratively attached to the Department of Human Services. The Council would develop an employment first training plan for providers of services to individuals with disabilities, coordinate and conduct educational activities to increase awareness of the employment first policy, evaluate the funding mechanism for daytime services in the state for individuals with disabilities and for students attending inclusive postsecondary institutions.  STATUS: PASSED HOUSE. PASSED SENATE.

SB 402 (Gooch-51st) Provides for broadband services planning, deployment, and incentives, and authorization for the Department of Transportation to take certain actions to enable the rights of way of interstate highways to be used for the deployment of broadband and other communications technologies. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Ways & Means Committee.

HR 1431 (Cooper-43rd) Creates the House Study Committee on Healthy Housing. STATUS: House Special Rules Committee.

HR 1416 (Carter-92nd) Creates the House Study Committee on Bail Reform. STATUS: House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee.

SR 681 (Harbin-16th) A resolution urging the United States Congress to propose the Parental Rights Amendment to the states for ratification. The resolution lays out the following rights: The liberty of parents to direct the upbringing, education, and care of their children; that the parental right to direct education includes the right to choose public, private, religious, or home schools, and the right to make reasonable choices within public schools for one’s child; that neither the United States nor any State shall infringe these rights without demonstrating that its governmental interest as applied to the person is of the highest order and not otherwise served; that parental rights guaranteed by this article shall not be denied or abridged on account of disability; this resolution shall not be construed to apply to a parental action or decision that would end life. STATUS: PASSED SENATE. Assigned to House Juvenile Justice Committee. The bill will be heard in committee this MONDAY.

 

 

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