February 14, 2020
Volume 11, Issue 5
Short-Term Rentals Preemption Bill in House Rules
Voice Your Concerns with Your House Members
 ACCG reported l ast week that  House Bill 523 passed out of the House Regulated Industries Committee. This legislation, now in the House Rules Committee, significantly restricts a local government's ability to regulate short-term rentals (STRs) within its community. The bill 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. 
ACCG asks counties that have concerns with HB 523 please contact their  House members   and share those concerns, asking them to oppose the bill in its current form. To assist, ACCG has developed this thorough list of  talking points  you may wish to reference when communicating with your legislators.     
House Appropriations Subcommittees Revisit Budget

The House Appropriations Subcommittees held meetings all week to delve into the Governor’s budget recommendations. The Committees heard testimony from agencies and other groups regarding their work and the potential impacts of the proposed cuts. The Appropriations Committees thoroughly reviewed each budget item and it appears they will make funding direct services a priority in their final budget recommendations. 

ACCG has been working with the Governor’s Office, the Office of Planning and Budget, and the subcommittee chairs to determine real impacts of cuts to direct local level services. We are encouraged by the willingness of all to listen to our concerns and the comments and direction the subcommittee chairs have taken during the past week and look forward to the amended budget presentation and passage by the House in the upcoming week.

Click here for a detailed summary of the Governor’s Proposed Budget that may impact counties. 

Please advise your local delegations of any items that are of a particular concern to your county.
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
New Version of Transit Bill

House Committee Transportation Chairman Kevin Tanner presented a new version of  House Bill 511  to the Senate Transportation Committee last week. This bill, as introduced last session, created a new state agency to oversee transit. The latest version, found  here , creates a new Division of Transit and Mobility Innovations under the Georgia Department of Transportation. The bill still authorizes the option for a Single County T-SPLOST and establishes an excise tax on for-hire transportation. For a more detailed summary of the bill,  click here.      
New Bills Would Limit Available Dates for Sales Tax Votes

Two newly introduced bills -- House Bill 850 and House Bill 812 – would reduce the number of dates on which counties and school systems could ask voters to approve or renew sales taxes, including SPLOST, T-SPLOST (transportation), and E-SPLOST (education). Under current law, voters can be asked to approve sales taxes on two dates in odd-numbered years (March and November). In even-numbered years, sales tax votes can be held on the date of the presidential preference primary (when applicable), on the date of the general primary, and on the November general election date.

After July 1, 2020, HB 850 would allow sales tax votes to be held only on the November election date in any year, and HB 812 would eliminate the option of holding any sales tax votes in odd-numbered years while retaining all current even-year options. ACCG needs feedback from county officials regarding the practical problems that your county would face if the available election dates were narrowed in either of the proposed ways. HB 850 will receive its initial hearing on Tuesday, February 18. Please provide your comments to Larry Ramsey at lramsey@accg.org .
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.

Albany Herald - February 13, 2020

Capitol Beat - February 12, 2020

Atlanta Journal-Constitution - February 11, 2020

American City and County - February 11, 2020

Atlanta Journal-Constitution- February 10, 2020

AllOn Georgia - February 8, 2020

Rockdale Newton Citizen - February 7, 2020

Government Technology - February 7, 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!