February 7, 2020
Volume 11, Issue 4
Legislature in Adjournment Until February 18 to Focus on Budget
Legislative Calendar is Established Through Crossover Day
  On Wednesday, February 5, the General Assembly changed its current schedule and set the Legislative Calendar through Day 28, otherwise known as Crossover Day. The legislature is now in adjournment to allow the House additional time to review and revise the Governor’s proposed FY 2020 amended and FY 2021 budgets.

Legislators will reconvene on Tuesday, February 18 for Day 13 of the session and have currently scheduled Crossover Day for Thursday, March 12 . Please click here to view the new Legislative Calendar.
Regulating Short-Term Rentals - State Preemption on the Move

A new version of House Bill 523 was introduced and passed out of the House Regulated Industries Committee on Wednesday, significantly restricting a local government's ability to regulate short-term rentals (STRs) within its community. The legislation defines STRs, preempts local governments from prohibiting or registering STRs, and preempts locals from treating these properties any differently than other residential properties. This will effectively prohibit counties from imposing occupancy limits, requiring registration of such properties, regulating rental frequency, or requiring licenses/permits for inspections of such properties. 

If you have concerns with this legislation, please contact your House Rules Committee member(s) .      
Click on "This Week's Bills" to review the bills included in this week's Legislative Update.
Access the Legislative Tracking Database for a compilation of all bills ACCG is following. 
More from the Gold Dome
Sovereign Immunity Waiver Measure Introduced

In response to the veto of House Bill 311 in 2019, Rep. Andy Welch introduced House Resolution 1023 , a proposed constitutional amendment that would waive the sovereign immunity of the state, counties, and cities for certain non-monetary claims.

Please ask your county attorneys to review this legislation and to contact Larry Ramsey at lramsey@accg.org with any questions.
Bill Proposes Streamlined Permitting for Alcohol Beverage Licenses

House Bill 674 , authored by Rep. Alan Powell, was presented during the Alcohol-Tobacco Subcommittee of the Regulated Industries Committee this week. This bill authorizes the Department of Revenue (DOR), on or before January 1, 2021, to develop and implement a state-wide, centralized online platform for retailers to submit initial applications and renewals for locally and state issued alcohol beverage licenses.

The bill’s author has requested that ACCG work with our partners at the Georgia Municipal Association and DOR to discuss any concerns we’d have with this new process of issuing alcohol beverage licenses. Please provide feedback to Kathleen Bowen by emailing her at kbowen@accg.org or calling (404)589-7850.
Timber Harvesting: Changes to County Ordinance and New Notification Website

Legislation related to timber harvesting was introduced by Rep. James Burchett. House Bill 897 establishes a framework for a statewide timber harvest notification web page housed by the Georgia Forestry Commission; increases the fine for harvesters who fail to notify the county that they are operating; and increases the bond amount due by harvesters who have previously been found to cause damage to county roads and rights of way.

In addition, the legislation narrows the scope of when the bond can be used and creates a timeline for when and how a county can utilize a bond. For additional details click here .  
Stay Connected and Engaged!
Policy Communication Tools

Don't forget about the various communications tools that will help keep you informed and engaged. Click here to read all about them!
Watch Today's Livestream

Did you miss today's Facebook Live Legislative Update? Don't worry - we've got you covered! Just click on the recap image to start watching!
2020 Capitol Connection Conference
Registration is now available for the 2020 Capitol Connection Conference that will take place February 27-28 at the Hilton Atlanta in Fulton County. Click here for more information including a conference agenda and the information sheet.
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.

Georgia Recorder - February 7, 2020

Atlanta Journal-Constitution - February 6, 2020

Georgia Recorder - February 6, 2020

The Center Square Georgia - February 5, 2020

Insider Advantage- February 5, 2020

Atlanta Journal-Constitution - February 5, 2020

Atlanta Journal-Constitution– February 4, 2020

Atlanta Journal-Constitution– February 4, 2020

WALB News 10- February 1, 2020
Questions? Email the
ACCG Legislative team:

ACCG is YOUR county association. We are here to advance all Georgia county governments. Please feel free to let us know when you're visiting the State Capitol this session and a member of the policy team will gladly assist you as needed. Don't forget to use your  2020 Legislative Toolkit and your Legislative Updates when conversing with your state legislators!