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A last look at new laws
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This week will close out our look at legislation passed in 2012 by the Legislature. You can continue to access the legislation through the General Assembly’s Web site or give our office a call and we will try to help you with your questions.

SB 293—There will now be no charge for the "In God We Trust" license plate strip or for the county of residence strip. Each will be free of charge when purchasing a license tag.

HB 729—Updates Georgia code to reflect the state is ceasing to collect the 1/4 mill property tax from counties. Also specifically excludes insulin from sales taxes.

HB 863—Raises the amount of services or materials that state agencies can purchase without bidding from $5,000 to $25,000.

SB 346—Allows local pharmacies to sell mail-order drugs and remote order capabilities.

HB 861—Requires applicants for TANF benefits to take a drug test. Limited to one parent in family. First positive, benefits withheld one month until negative test. Second positive, three months suspension. Third or subsequent positive, suspension of one year or until completion of drug or substance abuse program and negative test upon reapplication. Under 18 are exempt. Test reimbursable if Medicaid eligible.

HB 879—Requires at least two employees at all public schools to be trained on the care of diabetics.  Requires a diabetes care management plan by parents.

HB 1110—Clarifies that the Department of Community Health has authority to search for additional crimes doing background checks on personal care homeowners and employees and authorizes GBI to investigate elder abuse.

SB 337—Allows private insurers to offer credits or cash discounts as a wellness plan incentive.

SB 236—Requires parental involvement in minor’s attendance at courses required after a DUI.

HB 665—Modernizes Superior Court clerks records and processes and allows extensive digitalization.

HB 711—Provides confidentiality to communication between victims and their advocates at domestic violence and sexual assault centers. Exempts domestic abuse cases from the spousal evidence privilege in criminal proceedings.

SB 464—Authorizes DNR to issue 100 new commercial crabbing licenses and provides for a one-day salt-water fishing license.

HB 869—Allows DNR board to set catch limits and other regulations without having prior approval by legislature. Sets up finfish advisory board. Adds other requirements to commercial fishing vessels like toilet facilities required.

SB 366—Prohibits contraband such as cell phones from being brought into Juvenile Justice facilities or across guard lines. Bill also keeps the present limit of detention days in a YDC to the present 30 days.

SB 441—Prohibits pointing of a laser at an aircraft or at any officer of the law.

HB 1132—New language concerning telemarketing oversight requiring telemarketers to clearly identify themselves or the entity making the call, prohibiting blocking of caller ID services. Does not apply to political calls.

SB 402—Permits large state retirement systems such as ERS to invest up to 5 percent in alternative investments starting with 1 percent and adding 1 percent per year for four more years to 5 percent. Sets up standards for investing and annual reports to House and Senate Retirement Committees.

SB 372—Requires funeral directors to determine if a deceased individual scheduled for cremation was a veteran and eligible for burial in veterans cemeteries. 

If you would like additional information regarding a specific piece of legislation, you may access the Georgia General Assembly Web site at

I may be reached at

234 State Capitol, Atlanta, GA 30334

(404) 656-5038 (phone)

(404) 657-7094 (fax)

E-mail at

Or call toll-free at

1-800-367-3334 day or night

 Reidsville office: (912) 557-3811