Thursday, March 16, 2017

This Week in Your Capitol | 13-16 March 2017

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Last week I told you that we were in the eye of this storm. In many ways this week was the second half of that eye, but its fairly obvious that we’ve reached the other side. Our legislative calendars are getting longer, and the House is beginning to dive into the mound of Senate bills that were sent over from the other side.

My favorite highlight of the week was certainly Senate Bill 85 the Georgia craft beer legislation passing out of the House. I took to the well of the House and spoke in favor of the legislation. Including statistics that you’ve now heard more than once, like Georgia being the only state in our Union that doesn’t allow brewers to sell beer in their breweries, that brewers are on average 2.5x as profitable in states that aren’t Georgia, and that we’re missing thousands of jobs because we’re not willing to allow these entrepreneurs to do business like the rest of the country were my central arguments. I’m proud to report that the measure passed with 146 votes in favor and only 14 against.

SB 85 will now return to the Senate as the House modified the original bill. It will be up to our Senate to “agree” or “disagree” (I expect an agree, and certainly hope for one). Assuming they agree to the changes, the bill proceeds to Governor Deal’s desk for signature.

Another favorite highlight of the week for me was the announcement that the Millennial Action Project (MAP) out of Washington DC has tapped Rep. Dar’shun Kendrick (D-Lithonia) and me to co-chair a Georgia “Future Caucus” of legislators under 40 years of age. The caucus will focus on bipartisan approaches to legislation affecting the future of our state. In sister states they’ve tacked everything from ride-sharing programs like Uber and Lyft to red tape in the way of potential entrepreneurs. As Georgia becomes the 17th state to start a Future Caucus, I’m excited to say that it centers on one principal I have always held dear: Partisanship should never get in the way of good policy.

The House will reconvene on Monday and will be in session Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Then the following week we’re in on Tuesday and Thursday for Sine Die (our final day in session). Just two weeks left, ladies and gentlemen! Don’t forget that you can track my votes via my legislative tracker and on Twitter. You can also keep up with other legislative updates by following me on Facebook or my website.

Let me know if I can be of service to you- Please don’t ever hesitate to call. Thank you for allowing me to represent our families.

Go make it an Outstanding weekend!