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Sen. Grant Update: Buzz from the Gold Dome

By Senator Johnny Grant, submitted by the Senate Press Office

We are nearing the halfway point of the 2011 Legislative Session. While there is much left to do, we are fulfilling our constitutional obligations and working diligently to represent you. This week, we passed some very important legislation that balances our budget for the rest of Fiscal Year 2011 and ensures that we can handle leaner budget years. A bill was also introduced to reform the HOPE Scholarship Program, ensuring its survival.

Public Invited to SPLOST Presentation

The Baldwin County Board of Commissioners and the Milledgeville City Council invite voters and community members to learn more about the projects proposed for funding through the renewal of the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax (SPLOST) during a presentation at 7 p.m., Thursday, March 3 in the Knight Community Innovation Center (Digital Bridges).

During the presentation, representatives from both local governments will present the projects being put forth for funding through the renewal of the SPLOST sales tax.

Following the presentations, residents are encouraged to pose their questions about the projects proposed for funding through the SPLOST and the SPLOST taxing mechanism itself.

Baldwin High School Hosts Black History Program

Baldwin High School's Black History Program is known as B.L.A.C.K.

B.L.A.C.K. stands for: Beautiful, Legendary, Accomplished , Creating, Knowledge.

The show is under the Direction of Mrs. Candice Haynes, and will be performed at Baldwin High School in Milledgeville.

The event is scheduled for Feb. 17 and 18 at 7 p.m. 

Ticket Prices are $3.00, this years theme is "Renewing the past, Reviewing the Future"

Buzz from the Gold Dome: By Sen. Grant

Written by Senator Johnny Grant, submitted by the Senate Press Office

Each year, the legislature is visited by the Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court who delivers an update on Georgia’s judiciary. Chief Justice Carol Hunstein comments on the accomplishments, challenges, and plans for the future of the Judiciary.

It’s an enlightening speech about our courts and correction efforts.

Chief Justice Hunstein explained that Georgia leaders must seriously examine how criminal offenders are sentenced. We are operating at 106 percent of prison capacity. Many inmates are not as great a threat to society as they are to themselves. She said that instead of incarcerating drug addicts and mentally ill offenders, we must keep prison space reserved for the most dangerous and violent criminals and those who commit crimes against children.

Congressman Barrow Takes Questions

Congressman John Barrow will take questions from citizens at Digital Bridges on Saturday, February 19 from 1 p.m. until 2 p.m.

This event is part of “Congress on the Corner” and is an opportunity to visit one-on-one with Congressman Barrow and discuss issues.

For more information, call Congressman Barrow’s offices at this toll-free number: 1-866-890-6236.

Mansion Offers Discounted Tours During Georgia History Month

The Old Governor’s Mansion, in partnership with the Georgia Department of Economic Development, is offering pre-booked rates of admission for tours during February’s Georgia History Month.

Georgia History Month celebrates Georgia’s Civil War era through historic routes and landmarks, a Georgia College news release says.

“Since the mansion is one of the premier sites associated with the state’s history, it seemed like a wonderful opportunity to help the public learn more about Georgia’s rich heritage as experienced by the occupants of the mansion,” said Matthew S. Davis, mansion curator. “Visitors also will learn about the most powerful men in Georgia government who lived in the Greek Revival mansion.”

Mansion tours focus on the history of the building, its occupants — both free and enslaved —and a myriad of complexities of Antebellum society in Georgia, Davis said.

Admission is $7 for adults and $2 for students. Parking is free.

Responding to Citizens' Need with Effective Solutions

--By Senator Johnny Grant

A number of important bills have been introduced this week that are aimed at responding to the needs of our state’s citizens, a Senate Press Office news release says. 

Georgians, along with voters across the nation, have told their elected officials loud and clear that they want smaller government and less intrusion.  Here at the state level, we’re working to meet that request.

As taxpayers, we all want to rest assured that our government is being a good steward of our hard earned money.  The Senate and House have both moved forward on legislation that would require the General Assembly to justify every dollar it spends.  Georgia currently operates under a continuation budget.  Once a new spending program is approved by the General Assembly, it is automatically rolled over into the next succeeding budget under a single line item, called continuation.