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Divided budgets still not a good idea

Divided budgets still not a good idea

Frequent readers of the column may remember back last September two columns that covered Alabama's separate education budget. The columns explored the difficulties that earmarking funds can cause t... » Read More
Teachers open up on the future of public education

Teachers open up on the future of public education

My recent open letter to Georgia's public school teachers produced as much response as I have received in a long time. Teachers from one end of the state to the other have weighed in and the commen... » Read More
What’s the purpose of the university system?

What’s the purpose of the university system?

The Board of Regents, which makes the decisions on how the University System is operated, voted April 14 to raise tuition rates at Georgia's public colleges by as much as 9 percent. » Read More
From our nation's Capitol

From our nation's Capitol

Monday, May 18: This past Saturday I had the honor of delivering the commencement address for the graduating class of Frederica Academy on St. Simons Island. This was my first commencement address ... » Read More
Making military lives matter

Making military lives matter

Memorial Day weekend, as you've heard time and again, is that long weekend marking the unofficial start of the summer: beaches, boats and barbecue fun in the sun. With all the frolicking, many over... » Read More
A look at governor’s vetoes

A look at governor’s vetoes

Maybe it's a sign of better times, or a sign of clearer communication between the House, Senate Appropriations Committees and the governor's office, but there was only one veto of an appropriations... » Read More
GOP chooses the practical route

GOP chooses the practical route

Georgia Republicans chose electoral pragmatism over ideological purity when they elected their state chairman last weekend, but it was a close call. » Read More
What Nobel Laureates should have incurred

What Nobel Laureates should have incurred

I have been trying to figure out what to do with my free time now that I have decided not to run for president of the United States (or what's left of it.) Some of you wrote and asked me to reconsi... » Read More
The vulnerable gain protection

The vulnerable gain protection

Both in funding and in legislation, issues facing human services, the disabled and the elderly were addressed by the Legislature this session. Legislation included the following: » Read More
Governor shows he can create jobs — by himself

Governor shows he can create jobs — by himself

Now that the General Assembly has adjourned for the year and all of the bills have either been signed or vetoed, what lessons can we take away from this latest legislative session? I can think of a... » Read More
 A thank you note to teachers

A thank you note to teachers

Dear Public School Teachers in Georgia: » Read More
Helping small businesses

Helping small businesses

Each year since 1963, Small Business Week is held to recognize the contributions of America's small businesses. In America, 99.7 percent of all employers are small businesses and they employ more t... » Read More
Georgia gets students moving on

Georgia gets students moving on

While you were distracted by this year's transportation funding or Opportunity School District debates - or possibly ignoring the Legislature entirely - Gov. Nathan Deal, Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle, and ... » Read More
Legislation bolsters education

Legislation bolsters education

While transportation legislation and funding along with issues such as medical marijuana took the headlines, important education legislation passed the Legislature this year and increased funding f... » Read More
Transportation bill is a turning point for lawmakers

Transportation bill is a turning point for lawmakers

Gov. Nathan Deal has finally signed the bill that dominated most of the discussion and media coverage in this year's legislative session: HB 170, the transportation funding bill. » Read More
Celebration sparks walk down memory lane

Celebration sparks walk down memory lane

You are going to have to give me a little scat room today. I am having an attack of the nostalgias. Going down someone else's Memory Lane can be as boring as a lecture on the life cycle of guppies... » Read More
The concrete road less traveled

The concrete road less traveled

What if you were told that 95 percent of Georgians are using a product that may not always be the best value for money? » Read More
Nothing like a parade to start the week

Nothing like a parade to start the week

Tuesday, April 28: My weekend began with the annual Stand Up For America Parade in my hometown of Port Wentworth. While all parades are special, this one always brings back memories of my childhood... » Read More
Agriculture a winner in budget

Agriculture a winner in budget

Georgia agriculture continues to be a critical part of the state's economy. The Legislature provided a number of funding additions to benefit agriculture and forestry in the fiscal year 2016 Budget... » Read More
Answer man has all the answers

Answer man has all the answers

What time is it, boys and girls? It's time for Answer Man! Time to dip into the ol' mailbag and see what is on your mind and show you how little is on ours. While we can't guarantee total and compl... » Read More
Coming soon: a $1 billion dollar pipeline

Coming soon: a $1 billion dollar pipeline

The Palmetto Pipeline will be one of the largest and most expensive infrastructure projects ever undertaken in Georgia. » Read More
Leadership, economic diversity spur Georgia

Leadership, economic diversity spur Georgia

Many older Georgians recall our economic leadership in what were called the "Four Ps" - peanuts, poultry, pine trees and pecans. These were solid building blocks of the Georgia economy decades ago,... » Read More

Letter to the editor

Dear Editor, » Read More
On the road to solving transportation funding

On the road to solving transportation funding

The activity surrounding each legislative session is always a combination of fast action with periods of slow-moving, tedious meetings as legislation is researched, deliberated and reconciled befor... » Read More
Highlights from a busy session

Highlights from a busy session

The 2015 legislative session has concluded and much sound legislation was researched, deliberated and passed for the betterment of our state. I will highlight the ones that most significantly affec... » Read More
Highlights from a busy session

Highlights from a busy session

As expected, transportation funding and the governor's proposal to address persistently failing public schools dominated Georgia's legislative session. The measures passed, yet several opportunitie... » Read More
Session could be called ‘year of the child’

Session could be called ‘year of the child’

Between investment in the Division of Family and Children Services and new legislation protecting children, the 2015 General Assembly demonstrated its commitment to children, their protection and p... » Read More
Why one outstanding candidate won't be running for president

Why one outstanding candidate won't be running for president

My fellow Americans, it is with heavy heart that I announce to you today that I will not be a candidate for president of the United States in 2016. » Read More
An emotional day symbolizes big changes in Georgia

An emotional day symbolizes big changes in Georgia

It was a joyous and emotional day when Gov. Nathan Deal signed historic legislation that legalized the possession and use of medical marijuana in Georgia. » Read More
The parties switch roles

The parties switch roles

Judging from the recent session of the General Assembly, Republicans seem to have become the new Democrats in state politics. » Read More
When good people do good things

When good people do good things

Sometimes we forget that there are a lot of good people on this earth doing good things. I was reminded of that by my friend, Jack Cookston, who recently had some medical issues that required him t... » Read More
State tops region in revenue growth

State tops region in revenue growth

Another excellent month, 9 percent growth in March, pushed Georgia to a year-to-date 6.1 percent increase, which leads virtually every other state in the South and puts the state neck-and-neck with... » Read More
Let legislators legislate

Let legislators legislate

There are many members of the Legislature who work hard and try to represent the best interests of their constituents back home. » Read More
No ‘Playtoe,’ and not on great leaders list

No ‘Playtoe,’ and not on great leaders list

Fortune magazine has announced its list of the World's Greatest Leaders for 2015 and would you believe that I got snubbed again this year? » Read More
Legislative session ends

Legislative session ends

The House and Senate approved a $21.82 billion budget for fiscal year 2016, with only one dissenting vote between the two bodies. A total of $490 million in new funds were directed for K-12 educati... » Read More
Road clears for transportation funding

Road clears for transportation funding

The General Assembly concluded business last week, and while we were in session for just two days, they were very long days in an effort to complete important tasks. The following are some of the b... » Read More
Session closes with several bills passing

Session closes with several bills passing

On Thursday, the House and Senate completed the 40th and final legislative day. While we passed numerous bills in the final days of session, I would like to bring to your attention several key piec... » Read More
'Haleigh’s Hope' is now Georgia’s hope

'Haleigh’s Hope' is now Georgia’s hope

Fifteen months ago, a local reporter asked me if there was any interest within the General Assembly in taking on the medical marijuana issue for the 2014 legislative session, and I told him, emphat... » Read More
Meet the state’s real superintendent of schools

Meet the state’s real superintendent of schools

If you want to meet the person who's the real state school superintendent, it's easy to find his office. » Read More
The best and the brightest for 2019

The best and the brightest for 2019

If you are a high school senior hoping to attend the University of Georgia, the oldest state-chartered university in the nation, located in Athens, the Classic City of the South, you have probably ... » Read More
Medical marijuana bill passes

Medical marijuana bill passes

Transportation and budget conference committees highlight the final week as the medical marijuana bill, HB 1, is passed and an agreement on autism. » Read More
Finish the drill on transportation funding

Finish the drill on transportation funding

Those of us who love Georgia football often use coach Mark Richt's phrase "finish the drill," whether we are talking about the game or about other important goals. Usually, getting to the point whe... » Read More
State to take a look at the use of drones

State to take a look at the use of drones

I am happy to report that the General Assembly session for 2015 is down to its last two legislative days. We have had a productive session but several important issues remain unresolved. The follow... » Read More
Action heats up as final day approaches

Action heats up as final day approaches

The 2015 General Assembly session has just two days left, and we are expected to adjourn sine die on Thursday. Consequently, a flurry of legislation will travel back and forth between the House of ... » Read More


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