Georgia lawmakers will return to Atlanta in less than two weeks to debate key issues that will affect people all over the state. Legislators will have about three months to tackle important issues like funding education and dealing with opioid abuse in the state. News 3 spoke with Democratic Minority Whip Carolyn Hugley (D – District 136), who says first and foremost, lawmakers must agree on a budget.
After that, the agenda holds discussions on the provider tax — better known as the hospital or bed tax. Hugley adds that despite campus carry passing on the floor and being vetoed by Governor Nathan Deal, another version of the bill may find its way back into the throws of the General Assembly. Fresh faces will join the debate starting January 9. Hugley offers some advice for some newcomers to the Georgia capitol.
“Understand that there are no permanent friends, no permanent enemies, just permanent issues,” Hugley said. “Always be open to listen to opposing views. And your word is the only thing that you have. And make sure when you give your word, you can honor what you said you were going to do.”
Governor Deal has also set up a task force to research how to handle and curb opioid addiction in the state. Another task force is researching education funding. Expanded gambling rights could be looked at as a measure to mitigate the education issue.
Also of note, Sen. Josh McKoon (R – District 29) plans to have a tuition bill ready to hit the floor when the session resumes Jan. 9.