Tag: Georgia policy

By Mike Klein Thousands of daycare workers now employed statewide would be required to undergo federal fingerprint background checks under legislation introduced in the House.  Not all at once, mind you, as there would be a phase-in period but eventually, there would be a more complete picture about the felony criminal histories of day care workers, including possible abuse histories. “The safety and security of children are the primary concerns,” said Carolyn Salvador, executive director at the Georgia Child Care Association (GCCA) which is the state’s largest organization representing day care centers.  GCCA has endorsed passage of HB 350.  And, it has been at the table alongside state officials to address issues that impact its members. During the past… View Article

New Criminal Justice Reform Council Proposed Through 2023

By Mike Klein Georgia would establish an ongoing criminal justice reform council to oversee adult and juvenile justice issues in the state as part of proposed sentencing and corrections legislation being considered by policymakers this session. In addition, adult criminal court judges would be allowed to depart from minimum mandatory sentences in a significantly small number of drug trafficking cases under legislation now before a House committee.  Many of the provisions in  HB 349, now before a House committee, were developed by the Special Council on Criminal Justice Reform.  The Special Council’s juvenile justice recommendations are contained in HB 242. This week will be important for both pieces of legislation.  Tuesday afternoon, the House Judiciary committee members voted… View Article
This week, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, quoted Kelly McCutchen’s response to a study that reported that expanding Medicaid would benefit Georgia’s economy: “McCutchen said low-income Georgians need access to health care, but he pointed out that the state can’t afford its current Medicaid program. ‘You would have a large economic impact if you drop $4 billion out of a helicopter, but that doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do,’ McCutchen said. ‘The issue is what is the best way to address the uninsured in Georgia, and is it sustainable?’”  … View Article

Friday Facts: February 15, 2013

It’s Friday! Today is the deadline to register for the Foundation’s Leadership Breakfast at Cobb County’s Georgian Club, 8 a.m. on Tuesday, February 19. Keynoted by the Cato Institute’s Randal O’Toole, “American Dream, American Nightmare,” is an explanation of the forces at play in the housing market in Georgia and in the nation, and how to rebuild the American Dream of homeownership. This event is open to the public and will cost $25 to attend. Find out more at http://tinyurl.com/avnapnh. Register here: http://tinyurl.com/7ldaqnk. A limited number of O’Toole’s book, “American Nightmare,” will be available for purchase at $20 each. Quotes of Note “The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false-face for the urge… View Article
By Kelly McCutchen  Every day, Georgia consumers and businesses propel the state forward, increasingly with a cell phone in their hands.   Wireless is now an indispensible service for commerce. More small business owners are using wirelessly connected tablets and smartphones to handle credit card purchases. Huge volumes of goods are shipped and handled from the Port of Savannah and over roads with the aid of wirelessly connected handhelds and specially designed tracking tags. Patients are able to monitor their health and interact with doctors all using wireless devices and services.  Wireless is a jobs driver in our state. While Georgia’s job picture has been getting better, unemployment remains too high for any of us. Jobs in the wireless industry have… View Article

Checking Up On Health: February 12

  Health Policy Briefs Compiled by Benita M. Dodd  N.C. says no to Medicaid expansion: North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory is backing a move by the Legislature to block the state from expanding its Medicaid program or participating in the state health insurance exchanges created by the Federal Affordable Care Act. In a news release today, McCrory made the point, “In light of recent Medicaid audits, the current system in North Carolina is broken and not ready to expand without great risk to the taxpayers and to the delivery of existing services to those in need. We must first fix and reform the current system.” The state will also not create an exchange, but will leave it to… View Article
By Mike Klein Georgians will need a comfy couch, lots of time and perhaps some caffeine when they begin to read newly introduced juvenile justice and civil code legislation.  Juvenile justice provisions in  House Bill 242 include a proposal to completely revise the state’s 32-year-old juvenile Designated Felony Act, a long overdue step forward, by creating two classes of more and less serious juvenile felony crimes. Juvenile civil code revisions would update laws that govern how juvenile courts operate and the rights of minors in custody and other situations.  The legislation is a comfy couch read at 244 pages.  The juvenile justice sections closely follow the Special Council on Criminal Justice Reform recommendations, which were released in December.  Civil… View Article
By Benita M. Dodd Money is tight and physicians are in short supply in many Georgia counties, so innovation and ingenuity are the keys in dealing with health coverage mandates required under the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act commonly referred to as ObamaCare.  In January, State Public Health Commissioner Brenda Fitzgerald announced that she plans to roll out “telemedicine” carts in public health centers across the state. These centers already are wired for teleconferencing between physicians and patients, many of whom are in rural areas with no or limited access to the specialists congregating in urban areas. Adding cameras, computers and medical equipment would allow real-time, long-distance consultations and diagnoses. That’s a good start, but Georgia can do… View Article

Friday Facts: February 8, 2013

February 8, 2013  It’s Friday! February 19: The Foundation’s Leadership Breakfast at Cobb County’s Georgian Club, 8 a.m. on Tuesday, February 19, is keynoted by the Cato Institute’s Randal O’Toole. In “American Dream, American Nightmare,” he offers an explanation of the forces at play in the housing market in Georgia and in the nation, and how to rebuild the American Dream of homeownership. This event is open to the public and will cost $25 to attend. Find out more at http://tinyurl.com/avnapnh. Register by Friday, February 15, at http://tinyurl.com/7ldaqnk. Quotes of Note “This is our challenge. And this is why, here in this hall tonight — better than we’ve ever done before — we’ve got to quit… View Article
By Mike Klein Georgia Supreme Court Chief Justice Carol Hunstein declared the state is at a “crossroads in juvenile justice history” and challenged the General Assembly to expand mental health services for “clearly disturbed youngsters” during her final State of the Judiciary address, telling lawmakers, “We wait for the explosion and it will come” unless courts have more resources for dealing with juveniles who are clearly at risk to themselves and others. Hunstein delivered her final State of the Judiciary Address to the General Assembly Thursday morning in Atlanta.  Her term as Chief Justice expires later this year.  Hunstein devoted a major section of her remarks to adult and juvenile justice system reforms.  Legislators enacted the start of adult reforms… View Article

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U.S. Senator Bill Frist more quotes