Georgia PTA Legislative Update 2015-27-1
by Tyler Barr on 1/27/2015

Monday, January 26, 2015, the Georgia General Assembly convened for its 5th Legislative Day. The General Assembly was in adjournment Friday, January 16 through Sunday, January 25. During this time, the Joint Appropriations Committee met to hear proposals from agency leaders regarding the current fiscal year 2015 budget. 

In addition, Governor Deal named individuals who will serve on the Education Reform Commission that he announced during his State of the State address.  The commission will study the state's education system, including its funding formula, and provide recommendations intended to improve the system, increase access to early learning programs, recruit and retain high-quality instructors and expand school options for Georgia's families. Read More

With education as a top priority, Governor Deal also suggested a constituional amendment that would create Opportunity School Districts. This model has been used successfully in New Orleans. It would authorize the state to step in to help rejuvenate failing public schools. Furthermore, Gov. Deal announced that the General Assembly will continue to invest in education.  In fact, this year's budget, coupled with his proposal for next year's budget, represents an infusion of over one billion additional dollars for K-12 education.

Please read other important information below to prepare you for this week's legislation session. 

House and Senate Committee Meetings

  • Senate Education and Youth Committee met monday at 1:00 PM in room 307 CLOB to adopt the committee rules for 2015-16 legislative term and discuss SB-2, Tippins-37th, a local board of education can award high school diplomas to 16 year olds or older students who complete certain 9th or 10th grade core high school classes (and tests) as well as certain other eligibility requirements and who are accepted at and complete a course of study at a post-secondary institution. This bill is expected to be amended into a substitute bill. 
  • House Appropriation Subcommittee will meet Tuesday, January 27, 2015, 7:30 AM - 9:30 AM, room 341 CAP. See Agenda 
  • Senate Higher Education Committee will meet Tuesday, January 27, 2015, 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM, room 310 CLOB. See Agenda 
  • Senate Education and Youth Committee will meet Wednesday, January 28, 2015, 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM, room 307 CLOB. (Agenda TBD)
  • House Education Committee will meet Wednesday, January 28, 2015, 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM, room 606 CLOB. See Agenda
  • Senate Higher Education Committee will meet Thursday, January 29, 2015, 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM, room 310 CLOB. (Agenda TBD) 

New House and Senate Legislation 

  • HB-43, Smith-125th, so as to provide that both parents are entitled to pick up and drop off their child from school unless a court order has terminated such right; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
  • HB-52, Quick-117th, relating to parenting plans, so as to change provisions requiring parenting plans to be incorporated into final orders involving the custody of a child; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes. 
  • HB-54, Waites-60th, relating to grants to children of law enforcement officers, firefighters, and prison guards, so as to provide for undergraduate full tuition grants to children of law enforcement officers, firefighters, prison guards, and Highway Emergency Response Operators of the Department of Transportation who were killed in the line of duty who attend institutions of the University System of Georgia and who meet certain eligibility requirements; to provide a definition; to provide for voluntary donations through state income tax returns and drivers' licenses for funding; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
  • HB-62, Tanner-9th, relating to qualifications for the scholarship program for special needs students, so as to waive certain qualifications for students whose parent is an active duty military service member stationed in Georgia within the previous year; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
  • HB-63, Tanner-9th, relating to the imposition, computation, and rate of and exemptions from state income taxes, so as to revise the amount of the adult basic skills education program tax credit; to provide for procedures, conditions, and limitations; to provide an aggregate cap on the amount of the tax credit; to provide for a short title; to provide for an effective date and for applicability; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
  • HB-65, Caldwell-20th, relating to elementary and secondary education, so as to require local boards of education and certain charter schools to hold at least two public meetings on the proposed annual operating budget; to require that a summary of the proposed and adopted annual operating budget be posted on the Internet; to require that the detailed annual operating budget be made available upon request; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
  • SB-35, James-35th, relating to cruelty to children, so as to provide that leaving certain children in vehicles under certain circumstances constitutes cruelty to children in the third degree; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.
  • SB-44, Orrock-36th, relating to education, so as to provide that noncitizen students receiving a grant of deferred action for childhood arrivals from the United States Department of Homeland Security may be extended the same consideration as citizens of the United States in determining whether they qualify for in-state classification for purposes of tuition and fees by the university system and the Technical College System of Georgia; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

Read and Referred Legislation

  • HB-17, Spencer-180th, Hidden Predator Act; enact. Judiciary 
  • SB-35, James-35th, relating to cruelty to children, so as to provide that leaving certain children in vehicles under certain circumstances constitutes cruelty to children in the third degree; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes. Judciary Non-Civil  
  • HB-22, Evans-42nd, relating to HOPE scholarships and grants, so as to provide that HOPE grants cover the full cost of tuition; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes. Appropriations 
  • SB-44, Orrock-36th, relating to education, so as to provide that noncitizen students receiving a grant of deferred action for childhood arrivals from the United States Department of Homeland Security may be extended the same consideration as citizens of the United States in determining whether they qualify for in-state classification for purposes of tuition and fees by the university system and the Technical College System of Georgia; to provide for related matters; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes. Higher Education  

General Assembly Calendar

  • The House will convene on Tuesday January 27, 2015 at 10:00 AM for the 6th Legislative Day. 
  • The Senate will convene Tuesday January 27, 2015 at 10:00 AM for the 6th legislative day. 
  • Watch live broadcasts of both chambers. Here