Georgia Trend Daily – Feb. 10, 2023

Feb. 10, 2023 Augusta Chronicle

Georgia’s revised 2023 budget returns dollars to taxpayers. Here’s what you need to know.

Adam Van Brimmer reports that many Georgians could soon receive a tax refund – even those who have yet to file their 2022 returns. The Georgia Senate is considering an amended 2022-2023 budget that calls for a homestead exemption for property owners.

Picture of several people getting dentail care at an event with TeamSmile and CareSource


Feb. 10, 2023 Georgia Trend – Exclusive!

3 Oral Health Strategies to Improve the Whole Health of Georgia’s Children

Dr. Judy Greenlea Taylor reports that February is National Children’s Dental Health Month, and an opportunity to continue to improve the Whole Health of Georgia’s Children one smile at a time. Diseases that impact oral health and the ability to smile, speak and chew include cavities, tooth decay, gum (periodontal) disease and oral cancer.

Feb. 10, 2023 Atlanta Journal Constitution

Neighbors fear Microsoft’s halted Westside campus is another unkept promise

Zachary Hansen reports that Arthur Toal hopes to one day feel safe biking or riding his Onewheel from his Howell Station home to Westside Park. Currently, that involves traveling past multiple construction sites along pothole-laden streets and circumnavigating a narrow bike lane along Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway.

Feb. 10, 2023 Columbus Ledger-Enquirer

Columbus uses $1 million from federal grant to improve, beautify local street

Kelby Hutchison reports that a Columbus road will soon be safer and nicer looking thanks to funding received from the Safe Streets and Roads for All program. Columbus will receive $1 million as part of $800 million in grant awards for 510 projects announced on Feb. 1 by U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

Feb. 10, 2023 GPB

GDOT promised better in Macon after cutting it in half with I-75. Has the state kept its word?

Laura Corley reports, Peter Givens was a teenager in the ‘60s when he watched one of Macon’s oldest Black cemeteries torn apart as the construction of Interstate 75 came through the heart of Pleasant Hill. Home from a military high school out of state, Givens watched from Walnut Street as dirt was turned and tombs were pried from the earth in Linwood Cemetery, the final resting place for some of Macon’s most notable Black residents.

Feb. 10, 2023 Valdosta Daily Times, CNHI

Bills target DAs, gun safety

Asia Ashley reports that Athens Rep. Houston Gaines and Dallas Rep. Joseph Gullett sponsored House Bill 229 in the 2023 Georgia legislative session, which requires district attorneys to make prosecutorial decisions when there is probable cause for prosecution. Failure to do so would make a prosecutor subject to recall – adding to the existing criteria that make a public official eligible for recall, according to the proposal.

Feb. 10, 2023 Marietta Daily Journal

Setzler files bill taking aim at Cobb commission’s redistricting effort

Chart Riggall reports that State Sen. Ed Setzler, R-Acworth, filed legislation this week taking aim at Cobb County’s effort to redistrict itself via its purported home rule powers. Senate Bill 124, which has the support of fellow Cobb State Sens. Kay Kirkpatrick, R-east Cobb, and John Albers, R-Roswell, would explicitly prohibit Georgia counties from drawing their own district lines.

Feb. 10, 2023 Rome News-Tribune

Cave Spring approves charter change to add city manager; next step is up to Georgia General Assembly

Diane Wagner reports that Cave Spring could be advertising for its first city manager as early as this summer. Mayor Rob Ware said Wednesday that the City Council voted unanimously for the change to its charter presented at a Tuesday called meeting.

Feb. 10, 2023 WABE

Georgia GOP Senate bills seek to deny gender-affirming care to minors

Jess Mador reports that some Republican state lawmakers want to ban medical treatment for young people experiencing gender dysphoria. Two bills filed Thursday — Senate Bill 140, sponsored by Cordele Republican Sen. Carden Summers and others, and Senate Bill 141, sponsored by Gwinnett Republican Sen. Clint Dixon and others — are part of a larger trend seen in around a dozen states this year.

Feb. 10, 2023 The Center Square

Proposed Georgia gun legislation has unintended consequences, expert says

T.A. DeFeo reports that the proposed legislation in Georgia that purports to crack down on anyone who uses a gun during a violent felony could have serious ramifications for lawful gun owners, an expert told The Center Square. Senate Bill 7, nicknamed the “Gangs, Guns, Gone” bill, would require judges to hand down mandatory minimum sentences in cases where someone uses a gun during a violent felony, even if they did not discharge a weapon.

Feb. 10, 2023 Georgia Recorder

Georgia workers who care for people with disabilities in line for pay hike, but advocates say more needed

Jill Nolin reports that workers who assist people with disabilities would receive about a $5-per-hour salary increase if decision-makers heed the recommendations packed into an ongoing wage review. The increase would cost the state about $91 million and lift the hourly wage of caregivers to $15.18, up from $10.63, according to cost estimates released Thursday by the state Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities.

Feb. 10, 2023 Capitol Beat News

Legislative committee approves raising truck weights in Georgia after lengthy hearing

Dave Williams reports that legislation to increase the limit on commercial truck weights in Georgia cleared a state House committee Thursday over the objections of local government officials, traffic safety advocates, and the Georgia Department of Transportation. The House Transportation Committee approved the bill 18-11 following an afternoon-long hearing that lasted more than five hours.

Feb. 10, 2023 Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Lone Georgia elections bill considered so far aimed at ballot paperwork

Mark Niesse reports, of all the ideas to change Georgia election laws, legislators are moving forward with a bill that focuses on ballot bookkeeping. The House Governmental Affairs Committee voted Wednesday to pass a proposal that would require consistent use of forms, signatures and seals as ballots move through the election process.

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