Georgia lawmakers begin work immediately

'Ceremonial' first day thing of the past
Rep. Jason Shaw, R-Lakeland, helps his 3-year-old daughter Anne Harvey Shaw vote on a resolution at his desk on the floor of the House at the Capitol.

ATLANTA -- Unlike most opening days of the General Assembly, the Senate got right to work debating substantive legislation Monday.

It took an hour to debate and pass Senate Bill 184 that removes seniority protections for teachers. The bill was a leftover from the 2011 regular session when time ran out for consideration.

The measure had originated in the Senate, but the Senate still needed to give its OK to changes made by the House last year before the final gavel fell ending that session. It wasn’t subject to a vote during the special session last year which only dealt with redistricting.

Senate President Pro Tempore Tommie Williams said the bill would strengthen education by removing a requirement that all layoffs be done on the basis of seniority.

“They have to fire the last person they hired, even if they were the best teacher in the state,” Williams, R-Lyons, said of the existing law.

Democrats opposed the bill on the party-line vote.

Sen. Steve Thompson, D-Marietta, asked Williams why the bill was up for a vote on the first day of the session when two senators elected last fall during special elections had not had a chance to study it.

“We’re talking about process and the way things ought to be done,” he said.

Action in the House was more routine. It passed resolutions inviting the governor and chief justice to address joint legislative sessions and a schedule for the next three weeks, including a recess all of next week for budget committee meetings.

“After that, we’re going to regroup and see what we’ll do then,” said House Republican Leader Larry O’Neal, R-Bonaire.

Another uncommon experience were demonstrations on the first day. Several hundred mothers and children crowded the hallways and chanted in support of Temporary Assistance to Needy Families, a state welfare program they’re hoping to be spared budget cutting.

Outside, two hundred or so supporters of Amnesty International and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People rallied against the death penalty. Many held posters or wore buttons with a photo of Troy Davis, a Savannah man executed last year for killing an off-duty policeman.

“If they can do it to him, they could do it to any of us,” said Rep. Sharon Beasley-Teague, D-Red Oak.

As in most years, legislation is pending calling for a halt to capital punishment, but the bills never come up for a vote in committee. This year, Senate Democratic Whip Vincent Fort of Atlanta announced plans to introduce legislation that would prohibit a death sentence based solely on eyewitness testimony.

Davis supporters say seven of nine eyewitnesses to the fatal shooting backed away from all or part of their testimony by the time he was executed.

2012 Legislature Contact List

 

Augusta area lawmakers: (Richmond, Columbia, Burke, McDuffie, Jefferson, Glascock, Warren, Lincoln, Wilkes, Taliaferro)

 

STATE SENATORS                                                                                                                     

Johnny Grant (District 25)  

johnny.grant@senate.ga.gov

PO Box1458

Milledgeville 31059-1458

Home Phone: (478) 452-1427

Office Phone: (404) 656-0082

110-A State Capitol

 

Jesse Stone (District 23)

jesse.stone@senate.ga.gov

642 Liberty Street

Waynesboro,GA30830

Home Phone: (478) 237-7029

Office Phone: (404) 463-1314

320-BLegislativeOfficeBuilding

 

Hardie Davis (District 22)

hardie.davis@senate.ga.gov

P.O. Box6389

Augusta,GA30916

Home Phone: (706) 434-8553

Office Phone: (404) 656-0340

327-ALegislativeOfficeBuilding

 

Bill Jackson (District 24)

bill.jackson@senate.ga.gov

P.O. Box528

Appling,Ga.30802

Home Phone: (706) 863-5818

Office Phone: (404) 656-5795

109 State Capitol

 

House Reps

Jon Burns (District 157)

jon.burns@house.ga.gov

5829 Clyo-Kildare Road

Newington30446

Home Phone: (912) 754-3439

Office Phone: (404) 656-5099

228 State Capitol

 

Mickey Channell (District 116)

mickey.channell@house.ga.gov

PO Box839

Greensboro30642

Home Phone: (706) 453-1230

Office Phone: (404) 656-5103

133 State Capitol

 

Earnest Smith (District 122)

earnest.smith@house.ga.gov

253 Greene Street

Augusta,Ga30901-1616

Home Phone:

Office Phone: (404) 656-6372

511 Legislative Office Building

 

Lee Anderson (District 117)

lee.anderson@house.ga.gov

160 Louisville Road

Grovetown,Ga30813

Home Phone: (706) 394-1812

Office Phone: (404) 656-0298

608 Coverdell Legislative Office Building

 

Gloria Frazier (District 123)

frazier26@comcast.net

2717 Willis Foreman Road

Hephzibah,GA30815

Home Phone: (706) 560-9709

Office Phone: (404) 656-0265

604 Legislative Office Building

 

Ben Harbin (District 118)

ben.harbin@house.ga.gov

4571-A Cox Road

Evans 30809

Home Phone: (706) 869-1953

Office Phone: (404) 656-3949

614 Coverdell Legislative Office Building

 

Wayne Howard (District 121)

wayne.howard@house.ga.gov

2047BMartin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard

Augusta,GA30901

Home Phone: (706)722-1123

Office Phone: (404) 656-6372

511 Legislative Office Building

 

Sistie Hudson (District 124)

sistie.hudson@house.ga.gov

PO Box58

Sparta31087

Home Phone: (706) 444-7247

Office Phone: (404) 656-7859

512 Legislative Office Building

 

Mack Jackson (District 142)

mack.jackson@house.ga.gov

733 Evelyn Street

Sandersville,Ga31082

Home Phone:

Office Phone: (404) 656-0314

611 Legislative Office Building

 

QuincyMurphy (District 120)

quincy.murphy@house.ga.gov

3238 Peach Orchard Road

Augusta30909

Home Phone: (706) 790-4600

Office Phone: (404) 656-0265

604 Legislative Office Building

 

Barbara Sims (District 119)

barbara.sims@house.ga.gov

10 Retreat Road

Augusta,GA30909

Home Phone: (706) 481-9591

Office Phone: (404) 656-0213

508 Legislative Office Building

 

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