Capitol Connection E-Newsletter – May 2019
Register for the 2019 Summer Policy Committee Meetings
Registration is now open for the 2019 Policy Committee Meetings! Policy Committee Meetings are designed for the association's seven standing policy committees to develop their positions on particular issues for incorporation in the 2020 ACCG Policy Agenda. This year, six of the seven committee meetings will take place over a span of two days in both the northern and southern regions of the state. Northern region meetings are scheduled for August 14 - 15 in Forsyth County while southern region meetings will take place on August 28 - 29 in Tift County. More details can be found here . Contact your county clerk to register.

Get Involved in the ACCG Policy development process
Sign up for the policy committee(s) of your choice. Committee membership is open to all elected and appointed county officials, and those interested may request assignments to the committee(s) of their choice. Not interested in joining any committees? There's still an opportunity to stay engaged on issues that are of importance to counties. ACCG is seeking input from county officials and staff on policy issues being discussed for the remainder of 2019 and in preparation for the 2020 legislative session. Simply fill out this form to join the committee(s) or to select a topic of interest. Once completed, return the form to Monique Jackson at [email protected] or fax to 678-626-9642 .

New Policy Procedures Adopted by ACCG Board of Managers
During the 2019 Annual Conference, the ACCG Board of Managers adopted new procedures to replace the 2017 Policy Council Objectives Rules and Operating Procedures and the 2017 Business Session Rules and Operating Procedures to Adopt the Legislative Agenda.The final policy procedures can be found here.

Joint ACCG/GMA Task Force for LOST and SDS Issues
ACCG and the Georgia Municipal Association (GMA) have teamed up to create a joint task force to address various issues concerning the negotiations between counties and their respective cities for Local Option Sales Tax distributions and Service Delivery Strategy. The resolution which establishes the task force can be found here . A list of committee members can be accessed here .
ACCG-GMA Federal Advocacy Trip
ACCG Executive Director Dave Wills and GMA Executive Director Larry Hanson, along with ACCG Associate Legislative Director Kathleen Bowen and GMA Director of Federal Relations & Research Becky Taylor, are in Washington, D.C., this week meeting with staff from the White House, federal agencies and members of the Georgia Congressional delegation. It is believed this is the first time the two state association executive directors have made a joint trip to D.C. - an effort which extends the state-level advocacy partnership to the federal level. Topics slated for discussion include Hurricane Michael disaster relief funding, rural broadband and infrastructure needs of local governments in Georgia. 

Pictured Left to Right: Larry Hanson GMA Executive Director , William Crozer deputy director of White House Intergovernmental Affairs and Dave Wills ACCG Executive Director.
Final Legislative Update Now Available
Each year, ACCG compiles a Final Legislative Update to summarize legislation of importance to counties passed by the Georgia General Assembly. This Legislative Update is designed to serve as your guide to legislation from the 2019 session of the Georgia General Assembly and includes a brief summary, effective dates and the county impact(s) of each bill and resolution. 

The Final Legislative Update can be accessed  here for your review. Please contact a member of the ACCG policy team should you have any questions regarding specific legislation. 
House Appoints Members to Rural Development Council
The House Rural Development Council (RDC) was established two years ago and charged with addressing issues and challenges facing rural Georgia. The RDC, which has already developed several bills on rural broadband and healthcare, among others, had sunset this January.  The new co-chairs are Rep. Rick Jasperse and Rep. Sam Watson. To see other members of this distinguished group, please click here.

Georgia Procurement Registry Changes Now Effective
In 2018, legislation was passed requiring Georgia’s local governments that extend bids or proposals for goods or services valued at over $10,000 to also advertise them on the Georgia Procur ement Registry (GPR). Over the past year, ACCG heard from many counties that the $10,000 threshold was too low and created much hardship in the procurement process. Accordingly, during the 2019 legislative session, ACCG worked with Rep. Tom McCall and other stakeholders to pass HB 322 , which revises the law by increasing that monetary th reshold to apply to only goods and services valued at over $100,000. In return, however, locals must advertise the bid/proposal on the GPR for the same period of time as set by ordinance or practice of the local government.      

HB 322 was signed into law by Governor Brian Kemp on April 28, 2019, becoming effective immediately. Please inform your purchasing staff of the new changes.   

2019 Legislative Issues Facing Other Southern Counties
In preparation for this year’s annual meeting of southern state county associations, ACCG developed this summary of county legislative issues, arranged by topic area, introduced in eight surrounding state legislatures in 2019. Read about the good, the bad and the ugly proposals our sister county associations encountered and how these compared to issues addressed by ACCG. See which issues are trending and what Georgia may expect in coming years. 
NACo Releases Report on Opioid Epidemic in Appalachian Counties
NACo just released Opioids in Appalachia: The Role of Counties in Reversing a Regional Epidemic, in conjunction with the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC). The report highlights new research showing that 420 Appalachian counties have been disproportionately impacted by an evolving epidemic of opioid addiction yet have fewer resources available to respond. In addition, the report includes recommendations and accompanying case studies to help Appalachian county leaders in navigating this complex local challenge. Access the report here .

BUILD Discretionary Grants
USDOT is now accepting applications for BUILD grant funding for investments in surface transportation infrastructure. Grants will be awarded on a competitive basis to projects that will have a significant local or regional impact. BUILD funding can support roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports or intermodal transportation. Applications are due on July 15. Details .

Survey on Local Policy Related to Connected and Automated Vehicles
NACo, in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration, is creating a toolkit for counties on connected and automated vehicles. The toolkit will be divided into four main sections: Technology, Policy, Deployment and Next Steps. As NACo begins to create the policy and deployment sections, they want to hear from you about current policies or pilot projects - active or inactive- that have been deployed in your county. Take this shor t survey on connected and automated vehicles to help NACo with its research.

Apply for 2019–2020 NACo Leadership Positions
The NACo President has the opportunity to appoint the Chairs and Vice Chairs of the association's 10 Policy Steering Committees, the Large Urban Caucus and the Rural Action Caucus. Presidential appointments are also made to four Standing Committees (Finance, Programs/Services, Membership and Information Technology) and six Ad Hoc Committees. If you are interested n serving, the nomination form can be found here and is due by due May 31 .
News You Can Use
Articles Related to ACCG Policy Issues
The following are pertinent articles regarding some of the major policy issues that ACCG is covering. The full article can be accessed by clicking on the title.

AJC - May 8, 2019

Georgia Pol - May 7, 2019

Times Free Press - May 2, 2019

Governing - May 2019
Watch the Final Facebook Live Legislative Update
The ACCG policy hosted their final Facebook Live Legislative update on Monday, May 20. To view the Update in its entirety, click  here.
Questions? Email the
ACCG Policy Team:

Policy Committee Meetings