Category: News

Atlanta Police Force on Track to Get Body Cameras

Amid the nationally ongoing and sometimes emotionally charged discussion of police interactions and transparency, Atlanta is moving toward body cameras for law enforcement officers. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Atlanta City Council voted to spend nearly $6 million to purchase 1,200 of the cameras, which are designed to capture officers’ actions without the ability for interruption or editing footage. This amount of cameras will cover over half of all active officers, as APD consists of approximately 2000 sworn police officers as of 2014, according to an annual Atlanta Police Department Report. In areas where body cameras have already been deployed, the response has been positive from both the officers and the communities they police. “I don’t know… View Article
California State Democratic Sen. Holly Mitchell and various law enforcement groups in California have reached an agreement regarding the fate of a bill introducing various reform measures to the state’s civil asset forfeiture laws, according to The Los Angeles Times of August 5, 2016, The bill, S.B. 443, changes the requirement for seizing assets to a criminal conviction, but only for seizures of less than $40,000 in value.  This amount comes by way of a concession to the law enforcement community, who perceived the bill as too far-reaching without this addendum. “At its core, [the previous version of SB 443] sends basically a message to drug dealers that the cost of doing business has gone down,” said Ventura County… View Article
EVENT INVITATION August 2, 2016 Contact Benita Dodd at 404-256-4050 or benitadodd@georgiapolicy.org Aug: 22 Event: ‘Across the Pond: A Policy Update,’ With U.K. Consul General Jeremy Pilmore-Bedford           Atlanta – What’s the meaning of life for the United Kingdom after “Brexit?” On June 23, Britain held a referendum on whether to remain part of the 28-member European Union. The vote was 51.9 percent in favor of leaving. The exit from the EU will take a while, but the country’s leadership change was almost immediate. What do the changes mean for Britain? What does this mean for relationships between that nation and ours? Specifically, how will the changes affect Georgia? According to the Georgia Department of Economic Development, Georgia is the fourth-largest… View Article

Above All, Do No Digital Harm

John Graham of the National Center for Policy Analysis writes a column in Forbes warning against congressional overreach as telemedicine moves forward across the nation. The article is printed below; the Forbes link is here. First, Do No Digital Harm: Regulating Telemedicine By John Graham Telemedicine, whereby physicians use email, phone, text, or video for prescribing and consultations, is growing rapidly. Seeking to encourage faster uptake of telemedicine, many well-intentioned parties are prodding Congress to take actions which will likely have harmful unintended consequences. So far, Congress has done well. With respect to regulating actual devices, the 21st Century Cures Act, passed by the House in 2015 with overwhelming bipartisan support, is forward thinking. If passed into law,… View Article
As reported in Creative Loafing, the city of Atlanta is considering new measures designed to keep people out of jail who might be better served with a targeted response to the reason for their offense.  This proposed measure is among many being considered within the state of Georgia and even nationally in the criminal justice reform movement, which seeks to curb high incarceration and recidivism rates with more intelligent and cost-saving strategies.… View Article
On Tuesday, July 12, 2016, the Georgia Public Policy Foundation joined the American Legislative Exchange Council and 20 other free-market public policy organizations in a letter to U.S. Senate Democrats after internal emails revealed that 19 U.S. Senate Democrats planned a coordinated attack to intimidate and silence conservative and free market groups. The letter is reprinted below. [Download the Coalition Letter Here] July 12, 2016 To: Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA) Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL) Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR) Senator Al Franken (D-MN) Senator Chris Coons (D-DE) Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) Senator Brian… View Article

AJC Quotes Kelly McCutchen on Georgia Spending

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution of Thursday, June 30, 2016 quoted Georgia Public Policy Foundation President Kelly McCutchen extensively in a front-page article on Georgia’s state budget and spending. The article is reprinted in full below; access it online at the newspaper’s website here. Georgia’s record budget still lags population growth, inflation By James Salzer and Isaac Sabetai A record state budget of $23.7 billion goes into effect Friday, bringing pay raises for thousands of teachers and an expansive road and bridge construction program. On the surface, it is seen as yet another sign that a state that once struggled to keep schools open 180 days a year has left the Great Recession in its rear-view mirror. But an Atlanta Journal-Constitution… View Article
Georgia Public Policy Foundation President and CEO Kelly McCutchen is one of nearly 50 leaders of organizations across the nation who signed a letter in support of the Competitive Enterprise Institute and opposing an attorney general’s subpoena that sought CEI’s communication on climate change. The letter is below. June 1, 2016 Kent Lassman President Competitive Enterprise Institute 1899 L Street, NW 12th Floor Washington, D.C. 20036 Dear Kent, On behalf of the undersigned groups, and the millions of Americans we represent, we write to you today to show our support for the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI).  Last month, CEI received a subpoena from U.S. Virgin Islands Attorney General (AG) Claude Walker. AG Walker is part of a group called “AG’s… View Article
Benita Dodd wrote a commentary for ZPolitics that was published on March 23, 2016, the sixth anniversary of the Affordable Care Act. The article is published in its entirety below; read it online at http://zpolitics.com/six-reasons/. ObamaCare Turns 6 Today. Here are six reasons it why it needs to go.     By Benita Dodd Today (March 23) marks the sixth anniversary of passage of the 2010 Affordable Care Act that was implemented in 2014. In Georgia, there’s no end in sight to ObamaCare opposition. It’s fortunate. Georgia is among 27 states that left ObamaCare to the federally managed health care exchange, www.healthcare.gov.  About half the state-managed exchanges are struggling financially. Georgia is also among 20 states that chose not to View Article

2016 Legislative Session: Bills We Are Following

(Updated March 23 at 9:36 am)   Criminal Justice SB 367 – A broad criminal justice reform package including youth diversion programs, community supervision and increased eligibility for parole for certain drug offenders. (Passed Senate 53-0, Passed House 166-1http://www.legis.ga.gov/legislation/en-US/Display/20152016/SB/367 HB  832 – Would require criminal proceedings to be completed prior to civil asset forfeiture. (No actionhttp://www.legis.ga.gov/Legislation/en-US/display/20152016/HB/832 Education SB 92 – Would create a universal Education Savings Accounts. Five states have authorized ESAs. (No actionhttp://www.legis.ga.gov/Legislation/en-US/display/20152016/SB/92 HB 848 – Blue Star Family Scholarship Program would provide scholarships for children of military service members to attend a private  school. (No actionhttp://www.legis.ga.gov/Legislation/en-US/display/20152016/HB/848 HB 865 – Would create a tuition tax credit scholarship… View Article

The Foundation should take a lot of pride in your influence on Georgia governmental policy over the past several years. If you look back on several things that you were crying in the wilderness about several years ago, you will find that Governor Miller adopted them…your influence and your pressure on that process has been a major factor in governmental policy in Georgia. You should be congratulated.

Governor Sonny Perdue more quotes