Session Update: Week Four

Dale Rutledge district 109

On Monday, February 3, 2020, the General Assembly began Week Four of the 2020 Legislative Session. Every year, my colleagues and I meet for 40 days to work for the betterment of Georgia. I will update you weekly on what is happening at the Capitol.

    On Wednesday, the House adopted House Resolution 935, a bipartisan measure that reauthorizes the Georgia Commission on Freight and Logistics for the 2020 calendar year. The commission, created in 2019, would continue its work to develop unique and specific solutions for trucking, rail and air cargo, including reducing the driving risks for truck drivers and other motorists, expanding dedicated lanes for moving freight, and reducing traffic impacts in and out of the ports and around key metropolitan areas.

By the end of the year, the commission would submit a comprehensive report detailing a legislative framework for funding and policy development ahead of the 2021 legislative session. HR 935 is in the State Senate. If it is adopted, the commission will continue its necessary work to identify ways to support the state’s freight and logistics industries and allow Georgia to maintain its competitive advantage in these industries.

    Over the last few years, the House has spearheaded legislation to develop the new Georgia State-wide Business Court, which launched in January 2020 and will begin taking cases in August 2020. Georgia voters approved the specialized courts, which are to provide expedited resolution of cases for complex commercial lawsuits. This week, the House passed House Bill 663 to allow judges, employed full-time and are in good standing with the State Bar of Georgia, of the recently created state-wide court to become members of the Judicial Retirement System of Georgia (JRS). Instead of remaining as members of the state’s Employee Retirement System (ERS), these judges could receive service credit in JRS equal to the amount of service they earned while a member of ERS. The Georgia State-wide Business Court system is to enhance Georgia’s position as the number one state to do business.

    This week, the House also adopted House Resolution 326 in honor of Mr. Roger Dill, who worked for the Georgia Department of Transportation for 23 years. Mr. Dill contributed to several notable transportation projects in Tift County and across the state, including the construction of Interstate 75. To honor his many years of service, House Resolution 326 dedicates a newly-constructed Department of Transportation building in Tift County as the Roger C. Dill District Office. His community has long recognized Mr. Dill for the vital role that he has played in Tift County, and this resolution formally acknowledges Mr. Dill for his commitment to the betterment of Georgia and his contributions to the state’s transportation infrastructure.

    Before we adjourned for the week, the House adopted Senate Resolution 712, which is a second adjournment resolution. Adjournment resolutions determine our legislative session calendar for the coming weeks. This adjournment resolution allows the General Assembly to remain in recess until February 18, Legislative Session Day 13, so we can focus our time and energy on the Amended FY 2020 and Fiscal Year 2021 budgets. My colleagues and I will use this time to craft balanced budgets that invest wisely and move our state forward. 

    Each week, you can return to my blog to read updates on what the General Assembly is working on for the state of Georgia. You are always welcome to visit me at my capitol office located at 601-C Coverdell Legislative Office Bldg. Atlanta, GA 30334. You can view my committee assignments for the legislative term here. Please feel free to contact me by phone at 404.656.0254, or by email at dale.rutledge@house.ga.gov. Don’t hesitate to reach out throughout the legislative session with any opinions or questions you may have.

I look forward to hearing from you!

Below, I’ve listed out leaders from both chambers. You can click through each of their names to find more information about them.

House:

Speaker of the House: David Ralston

Speaker Pro Tempore: Jan Jones

Majority Leader: Jon Burns

Majority Whip: Trey Kelley

Majority Caucus Chair: Matt Hatchett

Majority Caucus Vice-Chair: Micah Gravley

Minority Leader: Robert Trammell

Minority Whip: William Boddie

Minority Caucus Chair: James Beverly

Minority Caucus Vice-Chair: Erica Thomas

Senate:

President Pro Tempore: Butch Miller

Majority Leader: Mike Dugan

Majority Whip: Steve Gooch

Majority Caucus Chair: John Kennedy

Majority Caucus Vice-Chair: Larry Walker

Minority Leader: Steve Henson

Minority Whip: Harold Jones

Minority Caucus Chair: Gloria Butler

Minority Caucus Vice-Chair: Emanuel Jones