Gold Dome Update 
Highlights from the House 
Monthly Update
We have been hard at work over the last month as we continue preparation for our upcoming session. Study Committees are in full swing and it has been humbling to participate in a number of events geared towards furthering the progression of our state. 

It is safe to say that Fall may be my favorite season. Football, festivals, hunting season and the much-anticipated cooler weather is hard to beat. While we all look forward to the events our Fall season brings, the month of September always begins on a somber note, in reflection and remembrance of 9/11. Since the events of that tragic day, our nation and state began taking every possible precaution regarding the safety of our citizens.

Like all policy, public safety needs change often. What was relevant a decade ago, may not be as important today. Most recently, we have been concentrating on ways to curtail a rise in gang violence, as well as, continued efforts in strengthening laws against the vile practice of human trafficking. This year, the House and Senate have taken measures to further research these areas during our off-session season. Below you will see how we are working to protect our Georgia citizens.  

Gang Violence in Georgia

Sadly, there are more than 71,000 identified gang members or associates currently impacting every region of our state. Even more concerning? Gang violence is no longer confined to large cities. It is reported that 158 of 159 Georgia counties have identified gang activity. As rising gang violence is a concern, the General Assembly has made a commitment to identify ways in which we can curtail this trend through the formation of the  House Youth and Gang Violence Prevention study committee . This committee will meet for the remainder of the year, leading into the 2020 legislative session.

Special Committee on Economic Growth

While House members are concentrating on gang violence, the Senate continues to tackle human trafficking and increased safety through tougher penalties regarding sexual predators. The recent Georgia Supreme Court ruling of Park v. State found that the statutory authorization of lifetime satellite-based monitoring of offenders who are no longer serving any part of their sentences was unconstitutional pursuant to the Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

In response, the Senate formed the  Protections from Sexual Predators Study Committee  which is tasked with alternative means, methods, and strategies to protect the public from individuals who have demonstrated the behavior of a sexually dangerous predator. Each committee will work to analyze the best course of legislative action regarding these issues. The committees will turn in their findings in December which will include their suggested legislative course of action through the 2020 session and beyond.
Public Safety Legislation

As keeping our citizens safe is the absolute most important role of our government, we have made significant efforts through legislative action to ensure you and your loved ones are kept safe. As we continue to improve public safety policy, here is a quick look of what we passed during the 2019 session.

House Bill 12  requires that schools to post signs containing the toll-free number to report incidents of child abuse in a visible, public area of the school. 

House Bill 346  seeks to out the bad actors in the residential lease community by affording tenants the right to file a claim for retaliation when they feel they have been dispossessed for filing a complaint against a landlord regarding the living conditions of their residence. 

House Bill 424  adds the offenses of trafficking persons for labor or sexual servitude, keeping a place of prostitution, pimping, and pandering to the list of offenses defined as criminal gang activity. Further, this bill cleans up current evidentiary requirements. 

House Bill 471  brings Georgia’s ‘Implied Consent’ language for DUI’s, BUI’s, and hunting under the influence in line with the latest ruling from the Supreme Court of Georgia. 

House Bill 543  creates a process by which a judge may confer standing to have access to the court in cases involving the care, custody, or welfare of a minor child upon individuals who can demonstrate by clear and convincing evidence that to do otherwise would cause the child to suffer physical or long-term emotional harm.

Senate Bill 158  authorizes DFCS to provide emergency care and supervision for a child human trafficking victim, for labor and sexual servitude, without a court order or the consent of the parents of legal guardian. Further, this bill directs DFCS to take the child to a certified victim services organization to provide trauma-informed services. Finally, this bill limits the prosecution of individuals for prostitution to those individuals over the age of 18, while also adding a claim of nuisance for premises where an owner or operator has charged for sexually related services on or inside the premises. 
Be on the lookout for my monthly updates to ensure you are up to date on important issues regarding your state government! As always, if you need anything at all, please reach out anytime. Thank you for allowing me the humble honor of serving our community under the Gold Dome. We look forward to the coming days where we continue our efforts for strong for simple, smart and effective government.

Shaw Blackmon
Representative of Georgia's 146th House District

Representative Shaw Blackmon
District 146
Phone: 404-463-
Address: 401-K State Capitol
Atlanta, Georgia 30334

Rep. Shaw Blackmon represents District 146. He currently serves as a member of Economic Development & Tourism,Governmental Affairs, Insurance, Juvenile Justice, Rules, Small Business Development, Special Rules, and Ways & Means Committees. He serves as Chair of the Transportation Committee on Appropriations and also as House Appointee to the Joint Defense Commission.