Archive for the ‘Jeff Mullis’ Category

Sen. Jeff Mullis Receives “Most Influential” Honor from James Magazine

ATLANTA (April 10, 2014)  |  James magazine, one of Georgia’s leading publications discussing Georgia news and politics, has selected Sen. Jeff Mullis (R – Chickamauga) as one of the magazine’s “Most Influential Senators.” The recognition was announced in the March/April 2014 issue of the magazine, which profiled statewide leaders in business, government, politics, education, science and the arts. (more…)

MULLIS: Where the Rubber Meets the Road

By: Sen. Jeff Mullis (R – Chickamauga)

We’re officially in legislative crunch time. With only two days left in the 2014 session, the fate of hundreds of bills will be decided before midnight on Thursday, March 20. Several bills have passed through both the Senate and the House, and are now waiting on the Governor’s desk for his signature.

The Senate was busy this week and passed a number of bills that will improve the lives of Georgians. I was proud to carry House Bill 459, commonly called the “Slow Poke Bill.” For safety reasons, it is dangerous for a driver to occupy the far left passing lane when the driver knows there is faster traffic coming up wanting to pass. This is especially true for emergency situations. This bill will not only make our roads safer during our everyday commute, but it will also enhance the responsiveness of our first responders who should be blocked in unnecessary traffic.

The Georgia General Assembly continued its stance to keep the taxes as low as possible in our great state. We passed House Bill 658, which is a full repeal of Georgia’s estate tax. From now on, in Georgia, the property and wealth you amass during your lifetime will be safe from taxation by your state government.

Another important measure that is now on the Governor’s desk is House Bill 702. Georgia has a proud founding tradition that we can follow back to the very founding documents of our country. HB 702 is a guide to build a special monument to commemorate and memorialize this noble history with the Preamble to the Georgia Constitution, a selection from the Declaration of Independence and the Ten Commandments.

In the days since Crossover Day, the Senate has turned its focus to a number of House bills, including:

House Bill 943
HB 943 requires health insurance policies that providing coverage for IV chemotherapies to provide the same level of coverage for orally administered chemotherapies. The bill was amended to require insurers to cover children six years of age or younger diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).
Status: Passed House; Passed Senate with amendments; under consideration in House.

House Bill 965
This bill creates a Good Samaritan Law, encouraging people to seek medical assistance for drug overdoses. HB 965 allows licensed health practitioners to prescribe and pharmacists to dispense opioid antagonists.
Status: Passed House; Passed Senate with amendments; under consideration in House.

House Bill 770
This bill defines the crime of home invasion in the first degree and home invasion in the second degree, both criminal and juvenile code.
Status: Passed House; Passed Senate with amendments; under consideration in House.

Senate Resolution 1172
SR 1172 recognizes the Honorable Sen. John “Dickey” Crosby for his service in the General Assembly since 2008 with a deep personal commitment to the welfare of all Georgians. The resolution commends his invaluable leadership and wishes him a long, happy and healthy retirement as he spends time with his family.
Status: Special Recognition.

Even on our busiest days, I am delighted to hear from the wonderful people in District 53. Please contact my district office or my Capitol office at any time if you have a problem or concern—my door and phone lines are always open. As always, it is an honor and a privilege to represent District 53 at the Georgia State Capitol.

# # # #

Sen. Jeff Mullis serves as Chairman of the Rules Committee. He represents the 53rd Senate District, which includes Catoosa, Dade, and Walker counties and portions of Chattooga County. He can be reached at his office in Atlanta at 404.656.0057 or by email at jeff.mullis@senate.ga.gov.

 

COLUMN
March 17, 2014

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Jennifer Yarber, Director
jennifer.yarber@senate.ga.gov
404.656.0028

MULLIS: Sprint to the Finish

By: Sen. Jeff Mullis (R – Chickamauga)

The 2014 legislative session of the Georgia General Assembly has only a few days left. This past Monday was the 30th day of the session; more commonly known as Crossover Day. The Senate passed 27 bills and resolutions ranging from adjustments to the State Health Benefit Plan to penalties for retail theft. After clearing Crossover Day, committee work doubles down to review the House Bills that were passed over to the Senate.

One of the most important bills considered in the Senate after Crossover Day was the FY 2015 general appropriations bill that sets the state budget for July 1, 2014 to June 31, 2015. The $20.8 billion budget allocates state dollars to important initiatives for education and technology, including:

  • $539 increase for K-12 education, with $101 million for enrollment growth and training
  • $314 million to increase instructional days, reduce teacher furloughs or increase teacher pay
  • $14 million in capital funding to expand technology infrastructure
  • $3.6 million in technical education for books to dually enrolled students, the development of digital curricula in the area of 21st century manufacturing and other critical needs industry areas used by dual enrollment programs
  • $700,000 for the training and hire of a state autism coordinator, early intervention providers and support team members for earlier detection and diagnosis

A conference committee will be appointed to work out the differences in the House and Senate versions of the bills, and a final version will be approved before the legislative session ends on March 20.

The Senate also took legislative action on a number of bills on Crossover Day and throughout the rest of the week, including:

Senate Bill 98
SB 93 prohibits the State Health Benefit Plan or Affordable Health Care Act from offering abortion coverage, except in the case of a medical emergency.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 281
This bill would require the State Health Benefit Plan to offer at least one high deductible health plan paired with a health savings account.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 381
The Georgia First Informer Broadcasters Act directs the unified incident command system and the Georgia Emergency Operations Plan to create an emergency plan that allows first informer broadcasters to have more access to fuel, food, water and other materials necessary for maintaining a broadcast signal in state of emergency situations.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 382
This bill helps retail businesses defend against fraudulent attempts to get refunds. It establishes the penalties for these offenses, including harsher penalties for repeat offenses and for thefts of higher value.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 384
SB 384 requires the local boards of education, beginning in the 2014-2015 school year, to recommend high school students participate in a semester course of study in America’s founding philosophy and principles.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

House Bill 774
This the bill makes changes to local government contracting, DDS record-keeping, traffic signals, maximum lawful speed limits and others.
Status: Governor’s Desk.

I am never too busy to discuss pending legislation or your district concerns. Please feel free to contact either my district office or my Capitol office at any time– my door and phone lines are always open. As always, it is an honor and a privilege to represent District 53 at the Georgia State Capitol.

# # # #

Sen. Jeff Mullis serves as Chairman of the Rules Committee. He represents the 53rd Senate District, which includes Catoosa, Dade, and Walker counties and portions of Chattooga County. He can be reached at his office in Atlanta at 404.656.0057 or by email at jeff.mullis@senate.ga.gov.

 

COLUMN
March 7, 2014

 

For Information Contact:
Jennifer Yarber, Director
jennifer.yarber@senate.ga.gov
404.656.0028

MULLIS: In the Home Stretch

The Georgia General Assembly is now entering the homestretch of the legislative session, and legislators are just days away from a significant deadline. Monday, March 3 is the 30th day of the legislative session, also known as “Crossover Day.” This is the last day for Senate bills to transfer to the House for consideration, and vice versa. Any bill that does not receive a passing vote in its original chamber cannot move on in the legislative process and must be revived the following year of the biennial session.

With this deadline in mind, Senators have been working tirelessly at the Capitol. As we debate—and sometimes amend—various bills, I remain focused on the future effects of legislation. How these bills will affect the livelihood of Georgia citizens and impact our state’s economy always stays in the forefront of my mind.

The Senate took legislative action on a number of bills in several different policy areas last week. Some of the more notable bills include:

FY2014 Amended Budget
The Senate passed the Final Amended Fiscal Year 2014 Budget, also known as the supplemental budget. The $20.2 billion supplemental budget runs through June 30, 2014, and includes increases to K-12 education and the State Health Benefit Plan.
Status: On Governor’s desk.

Senate Resolution 415
SR 415 is a constitutional amendment limiting the power of the Georgia General Assembly to raise the state income tax above its current rate.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 93
SB 93 allows the use of suppressors on legal hunting firearms and suspends hunting privileges of a person convicted of violating certain hunting regulations.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 167
This bill is a combined substitute of both SB 167 (Student Right to Privacy Act) and SB 203 (An Act to Restore Educational Authority to Georgia Citizens). SB 167 allows Georgia to move away from national standards, currently known as the “Common Core,” and limits the collection and sharing of student data. The bill also provides new protections for the privacy of students in order to prevent life-long data tracking.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 343
SB 343 creates the High School Athletics Overview Committee and also amends portions of Georgia code related to the athletic association participation in the Quality Basic Education Act.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 397
This legislation requires insurers to cover children six years of age or younger who are diagnosed with an ASD. Coverage for applied behavior analysis may be capped at $35,000 annually.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

I am never too busy to discuss pending legislation or your district concerns. Please feel free to contact either my district office or my Capitol office at any time– my door and phone lines are always open. As always, it is an honor and a privilege to represent District 53 at the Georgia State Capitol.

# # # #

Sen. Jeff Mullis serves as Chairman of the Rules Committee. He represents the 53rd Senate District, which includes Catoosa, Dade, and Walker counties and portions of Chattooga County. He can be reached at his office in Atlanta at 404.656.0057 or by email at jeff.mullis@senate.ga.gov.

 

Column
February 28, 2014

For Information Contact:
Jennifer Yarber, Director
jennifer.yarber@senate.ga.gov
404.656.0028

MULLIS: A Week of Reform on Your Behalf

By: Sen. Jeff Mullis (R – Chickamauga)

In a week without the snow, the Senate worked through day 26 of the 40 day 2014 legislative session. We addressed a number of important reform bills to improve the lives of everyday Georgians, small business owners and children in our foster care system.

To improve the quality of care children receive from our Department of Family and Children Services, the Senate passed SB 350. Far too often, children in Georgia fall through the cracks. This bill would allow for well qualified private partners to join with our DFCS system in service to those who need our help the most.

The Senate also passed House Bill 809 to better protect Georgia’s small business owners from a deceptive legal practice called “patent trolling.” This bill protects hard-working citizens who are more concerned with the day-to-day operations than a potentially expensive, frivolous lawsuit.

This week was a full work week in the Georgia General Assembly in every way. Committees met to determine which bills are worthy of consideration before legislative day 30, also known as Crossover Day. That is the last day a bill could pass in the Senate and be sent to the House for approval, or vice versa, before legislative day 40 on March 20. Appropriations Chairman Sen. Jack Hill also called Appropriations sub-committee meetings to review the state budget for Fiscal Year 2015.

On top of all of the committee work, the Senate took legislative action on a number of other bills and resolutions that will pass to the House for consideration, or to the Governor’s desk for his signature. Some of the more notable bills include:

Senate Bill 318
This bill would allow alcohol sales in bars on the Sunday immediately before St. Patrick’s Day.
Status: Failed Senate; Reconsidered; Re-committed to Senate Rules Committee.

Senate Bill 95
Senate Bill 95 requires the non-partisan election of chief executive officers in counties that use a CEO or county commission form of government.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 350
SB 350 allows for child welfare services such as foster care, adoption and case management to be bid upon through contracts with community-based providers, including non-profit and faith-based groups. This legislation will provide a greater level of community-based services for Georgia’s children and families while also improving access to specialized care, resources, and support through an increased public-private partnership.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

Senate Bill 299
SB 299 provides minimum standards for watershed protection and empowers local government to draft customized watershed protection plans. The bill ensures full compliance of the Soil Erosion and Sedimentation Act and continues to protect the beautiful trout streams of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Status: Passed Senate; under consideration in House.

House Bill 809
House Bill 809 strengthens the Fair Business Practices Act to prohibit a deceptive practice called “patent trolling”– bad faith assertions of patent infringement. It also explains the process for determining if a bad faith claim has been made.
Status: On Governor’s desk.

I encourage anyone with questions about the bills mentioned above, or any other legislation, to contact my office at any time. As always, it is an honor and a privilege to represent District 53 at the Georgia State Capitol.

 

Column:
February 21, 2014

For Information Contact:
Jennifer Yarber, Director
jennifer.yarber@senate.ga.gov
404.656.0028