By: Sen. Mike Dugan (R – Carrollton)
The 2023 Georgia Legislative Session reaches a halfway point as the General Assembly closes week six of session. Each day brought new legislation to the Senate Floor with 18 items of legislation to consider. We continue to push for meaningful change here at the State Capitol and look forward to the seventh week of session.
There are a few bills of note that the Senate deemed worthy of passage this week. Senate Bill 21, sponsored by my colleague Senator Kay Kirkpatrick (R – Marietta), would revise the operations of the Veterans Service Foundation Board. This governing board works to raise money for the benefit of veterans across our state, which is a cause dear to my heart. SB 21 would allow a limited number of non-veterans to serve on this board in order to broaden the scope of outreach for our veterans. In addition, this legislation shortens the terms of commitment from seven to three years for those who choose to serve on this board. SB 21 passed unanimously through the Senate and has now been sent to the Georgia State House for consideration.
Freshman Senator Rick Williams (R – Milledgeville) also passed the first bill of his tenure through the Senate on Wednesday. Senate Bill 68, would establish the act of dogfighting as a racketeering activity under Georgia’s RICO statute. SB 68 targets corrupt organizations who endanger the lives of animals across our state and will hopefully deter this delinquent activity. The measure passed by substitute with a vote of 47 to 7 and has been sent to undergo a similar procedure in the House.
I am happy to report that my bill regarding impact fees for workforce housing has made progress through the Senate committee process. Senate Bill 136 modifies the required revenue source for a development project involving workforce housing and aims to further Georgia’s commitment to improving the lives of those who rely on such necessities. This bipartisan legislation was favorably reported out of the Senate Committee on Economic Development and Tourism and will move to the Senate Committee on Rules for further consideration.
This week, the halls of our State Capitol welcomed many guests to the Senate chamber. I was proud to recognize the Carrollton High School FCCLA Club and introduce them to the Senate body on Tuesday and look forward to supporting this organization for years to come. In addition, I welcomed the University of West Georgia’s Murphy Fellows to the State Capitol. This student leadership program is a fine example of success in Georgia’s 30th district, and I wish these young professionals the best in their future endeavors.
As we look to legislative days 21 through 23 of the 2023 Georgia Legislative session, I assure you that we are keeping the interest of Georgia’s citizens in mind through each decision that we consider. I look forward to working with my colleagues as this session progresses through the coming weeks. If you have any questions, comments or concerns about matters relating to the Georgia Senate, please do not hesitate to reach out to my office.