Georgia Trend Daily – March 23, 2023

March 23, 2023 The Brunswick News

Mining proposal draws 170K public comments

Gordon Jackson reports that a record number of public comments have been sent to the Georgia Environmental Protection Division regarding a proposal to mine heavy minerals near the Okefenokee National Wildlife Refuge. Atlanta lawyer Josh Marks said Alabama-based Twin Pines Minerals continues a concerted effort to get mining approved because the company claims there are “billions of dollars of minerals” at the proposed mining site.

MBA Students standing in an auditorium


March 23, 2023 Georgia Trend – Exclusive!

Unique online MBA provides quality education without sacrificing work-life balance

Julia Roberts reports, many adults dream of continuing their education, but some challenges come with going to school while juggling the responsibilities of adulthood. Student debt, working a full-time job, and staying committed to family and friends are all concerns for today’s students.

March 23, 2023 Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Engine maker Cummins unveils new regional office in Atlantic Station

Zachary Hansen reports that a global engine manufacturer and power generation company is opening a new office in Atlanta to serve as its Southeast regional hub. Cummins Inc. announced Tuesday it plans to base it supply chain planning group and information technology team at the new office location in Atlantic Station, which it calls Cummins Atlanta Hub, according to a news release.

March 23, 2023

Seoul Robotics Sets Up Office at Curiosity Lab

Trevor Williams reports that Korea-based Seoul Robotics has set up an office at Curiosity Lab in Peachtree Corners as it eyes further growth in North America. It’s a fitting move for a company whose connected, LiDAR-based systems and software provide 3D imaging of intersections, including the movement of both pedestrians and vehicles, to help cities better manage traffic flows in real-time and improve safety.

March 23, 2023 Augusta Chronicle

Augusta Regional Airport welcomes new chargers, previews electric plane prototype

Miguel Legoas reports, cars aren’t the only ones seeing an eco-friendly evolution. Augusta Regional Airport unveiled new chargers on Wednesday to power electric ground vehicles as well as electric aircrafts. The charging stations were created by BETA Technologies, who are also working on a prototype, battery-powered airplane for carrying passengers or cargo.

March 23, 2023 Gainesville Times

Hall may transition to electric vehicles for transit agency

Brian Wellmeier reports, transit services in Hall could take a first step to join a nationwide initiative to go green. County commissioners on Thursday will consider whether to transition Hall-Area Transit Services to zero-carbon emission vehicles.

March 23, 2023 Valdosta Daily Times, CNHI

GOP push election reforms

Asia Ashley reports that the results of the 2020 presidential elections continues motivating Republican efforts at election reform. The Republican-led House Government Affairs Committee voted March 15 to advance Senate Bill 222, which would provide further restrictions to donations to local elections departments.

March 23, 2023 WABE

Trans teen grapples with what’s next after Georgia votes to ban most transgender health care for minors

Sam Gringlas reports that Gov. Brian Kemp is now weighing a bill that bans most types of gender-affirming care for transgender kids. The measure cleared the legislature Tuesday and prohibits hormone replacement therapy and gender-affirming surgery for minors. Senate Bill 140 is one of many similar bills being passed by Republican-led legislatures around the country.

March 23, 2023 State Affairs

Food insecurity in Georgia is huge, and a Senate bill hopes to bring parties together to figure out how to fix it

Jill Jordan Sieder reports, a two-year effort to tackle food insecurity in Georgia may be coming to fruition. The General Assembly is now moving on SB 177, a bill to create a Food Security Advisory Council that would find ways to get more healthy food to economically disadvantaged people in underserved areas.

March 23, 2023 WSB-TV

Loophole allows Georgia car insurers to raise rates by up to 40%. A new bill could change that

Justin Gray reports that a bill that has now passed both houses of the Georgia General Assembly is designed to keep Georgia auto insurance rates under control. The bill ends the practice known as “file and use”. Georgia Insurance Commissioner John King calls it a “loophole” in state law that allows auto insurers to unilaterally raise rates without state regulatory approval.

March 23, 2023 GPB

Bill to expand veteran mental health services heads to Gov. Kemp’s desk

Ellen Eldridge reports that House Bill 414, which passed the Senate earlier this week, sets up a grant program within the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities to provide behavioral health services to military service members, veterans and their families.  The bill has now passed both chambers and heads to the governor’s desk.

March 23, 2023 Dalton Daily Citizen, CNHI

Georgia committee passes watered-down bill on employee public records

Asia Ashley reports that a Georgia House committee diced down a Senate bill Tuesday that would have allowed public employees to have their personal information exempt from public records. The original version of Senate Bill 215 was approved unanimously in the Senate March 2 and sought to allow all government employees and members of government boards, commissions or agencies to have their residential addresses and phone numbers stricken from all property records that are publicly available on any internet website of the local government.

March 23, 2023 Georgia Recorder

State Senate to consider reopening Georgia’s ‘flawed’ 2015 medical cannabis law

Ross Williams reports that Georgia patients have been waiting for years to legally access medical cannabis products approved by the state Legislature years ago, and Thursday could be do or die for the latest bill aimed at fixing the process. In 2015, the Legislature voted to allow people suffering from serious illnesses like Alzeimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease or cancer to take a special product with a low amount of THC, the chemical that produces marijuana’s high.

March 23, 2023 Capitol Beat News

Georgia Senate panel OKs reforming system for compensating wrongfully convicted

Dave Williams reports that legislation to overhaul the system used to compensate the wrongfully convicted in Georgia cleared a state Senate subcommittee Wednesday. House Bill 364, which the Georgia House of Representatives passed early this month, would replace the current requirement that the wrongfully convicted find a legislative sponsor for a compensation resolution and instead turn over compensation decisions to a panel of experts.

March 23, 2023 Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The Jolt: House and Senate tensions boiling as session deadline nears

Patricia Murphy, Greg Bluestein and Tia Mitchell report, a few weeks ago, a veteran lobbyist told us one of the most surprising developments of this year’s legislative session had been the surprisingly smooth relationship between the House and Senate. Well, the honeymoon may be over between the two Republican-led chambers. And at the middle of the standoff is the complicated fight over hospital regulations that we’ve been documenting this week.

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