Mary Margaret Oliver
Email Newsletter
January 6, 2016


The 2016 Georgia General Assembly convenes Monday, January 11th, at 10:00 AM--please come and join us at  your State Capitol!  If you wish to avoid the traffic and weather, all House and Senate Sessions, and most hearings may be viewed online on the General Assembly website.  

I invite you to come visit in person for a tour or conversation, and to give me your views on any issue that interests you.  As with most of my newsletters I will ask your opinion on a pending bill or budget items.

This week, I joined Representative Pat Gardner and Senator Elena Parent in a press conference to announce our sponsorship and pre-filing of HR 962 and HR 963.  These proposed constitutional amendments create an Independent Redistricting Commission to draw legislative election districts, and hopefully reduce the gerrymandering that creates hyper-partisan gridlock.  All details of the Commission, how members are appointed, and how reviewed, is set forth in the actual legislation you may review
here - HR 962  


Click here to take survey.

Thank you,
Mary Margaret   

Annexation and New Cities Report 

    I do not anticipate, but cannot be sure, that there will be additional new cities proposed for DeKalb County in 2016.  Both proposals from past sessions are pending for Greenhaven and Stonecrest.   The Senate Study committee makes good recommendations to improve the process for new city creation, but the House Study committee offers fewer suggestions.


I do not expect new annexations to be sought through local legislation for the City of Atlanta, and the City of Decatur is formulating its agenda.  Other annexations are happening, as legally allowed, through methods that do not require General Assembly action.


I have pre-filed HB 711to solve the loophole of new cities not contributing to the pension obligations for county employees who previously served their area.  I am hopeful this new legislative proposal, to solve the "pension legacy" issue,  will be debated and resolved.









Upcoming Legislative Issues  



I voted NO last year on SB 110 that allows sale and use of fireworks in Georgia, and I have followed the enormous negative responses to this bad bill.  I have met with the Georgia Municipal Association and anticipate--fingers crossed--that there will be legislation to amend SB 110 to allow local cities and counties to impose their own restrictions on sale and use of fireworks.  If repeal of SB 110 is not possible, I am hoping at least for moderating amendments that will address some the many complaints I received on the bill's passage and consequences.

Assault weapons research and proposed bill
At the request of constituents, I am preparing legislation to ban assault weapons based on enactments from other states that the federal courts have declared to be constitutional and not violative of the 2nd Amendment.  My goal, at a minimum, is to have a debate, and for someone to explain to me why assault weapons may be necessary to hunt Georgia deer.   Stay tuned.

Craft Brewers
Last year, the General Assembly passed SB 63 to give modest opportunities for expansion to craft brewers--tours and samples of products.  The Georgia Revenue Commissioner has issued regulations to curtail this small business opportunity, and everyone is mad, and wants changes.  The craft brewers deserve to be treated better and  I will try and help.

Upcoming House District 82 Events---You are Invited!
January 7  --  7 PM, Maloof Auditorium, Decatur.  The DeKalb Delegation will host its third public forum for voters to offer their views on what we should be doing in the 2016 Session. 

January 11  --  11:30 AM, State Capitol
Ceremony to recognize and mourn the loss of five Georgia Southern nursing students, killed by a speeding truck on Interstate 16.

January 13 -- 11:00 AM, Governor's State of the State address. 

January 13 -- 6:00 PM, Glenn Memorial Parish Hall.  Annual Legislative Preview.

January 20 -- 9:00 AM, Oak Grove Elementary Cafeteria.  Emory LaVista Parents Council Legislative Preview.


New Legislative Aides for 2016

We are happy to have two new aides who will be working with us this session.

Kelsey Drewry

Kelsey is obtaining her Masters Degree in Bio-Ethics at Emory and will be working with us to fulfill her practicum requirement. She is from Oregon and a graduate of Oregon State University. She is the third Emory Bio-Ethics student we have had working with us and we are pleased to have her , continuing our relationship with that wonderful Emory program.

Reemon Silverman

Reemon is a Maine native who received her undergraduate and law degrees from Bar-Ilan University in Israel. She practiced law there for three years, met her husband, an Atlanta native, and is now living here. Her interests are economic development and social enterprise. The Capitol is a great place to pursue those interests. Welcome. 




Please contact me anytime with your questions or comments and visit our website at the link below and  follow me on Facebook and Twitter by clicking the links below.  I look forward to working with you during the  2016 Georgia General Assembly, and I need your help!!  In the meantime, I will continue to report on issues that may interest you, and welcome your suggestions on how this newsletter may better serve you.

Mary Margaret
Law Office (404) 377-0485
Legislative Office (404) 656-0265
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