TOWN HALL - TALK TO US!
Much is happening at the Statehouse. Meet with us to learn more and to tell us what is on your mind. We look forward to seeing you on Zoom!


COUNTY COMMISSION REDISTRICTING: TIME FOR YOUR INPUT
DeKalb Board of Commissioners' proposed maps for the five individual districts and two super districts, essentially leaving in place the current organization of commission districts.

This week, you can comment on and ask questions about these Board of Commissioners maps in a Zoom with the House DeKalb Delegation:

TUESDAY NIGHT FEB. 8 AT 6:30 P.M.


As I reported last week, in addition to redrawing districts for federal and state elections, the 2020 Census data is being used to evaluate population shifts at the city and county levels. So some existing districts for county commission, school board, and city council positions will be redrawn.

The DeKalb County Board of Commissioners presented its recommended district maps to the House DeKalb Delegation last Wednesday at the Delegation meeting, which was advertised and conducted over Facebook Live. The maps would not change the current organization of the county into 5 districts and 2 super districts. By way of example, I live in Commission District 2, represented by Jeff Rader. Super District 6 also includes my home, so I am also represented by Super District 6 Commissioner Ted Terry.

The competing map presented to the Senate DeKalb Delegation by Senator Emanuel Jones would remove the super districts and redraw DeKalb into 7 districts, each represented by one commissioner. It is not clear that this sort of redistricting could happen this year, since it may require a referendum. Sen. Jones Reveals Maps

By the way, we understand there are also maps circulating changing the DeKalb County School Board districts to account for population changes. One version was published in the AJC in December. Stay tuned.

ALSO: The DeKalb Delegation will vote on the Board of Commissioners maps this week, at its regular meeting:

WEDNESDAY FEB. 9 AT NOON

Sen. Emanuel Jones' proposed map with 7 single commissioner districts. Photo credit: Tyler Estep, AJC (black lines are Estep's).
POLL RESULTS AND NEW QUESTION

Results from last poll
Over 200 of you responded to our poll about whether Governor Kemp should give a $1.6 billion refund to taxpayers. Here's the breakdown:

Yes: 19.7%
No: 20.7%
Yes, but not that much money: 4.8%
No, use the money for human services needs: 54.8%

New Question
I have a new question for you: Which set of redistricting county maps would you choose, those that retain the 5/2 two-commissioner districts or those that create 7 new single commissioner districts? Or do you have a better idea?

Take the survey HERE
A LITTLE PROGRESS

HB 1013 Mental Health Bill
I am spending most of my time working on bringing this important bill to the Floor. Right now, that means meetings and conversations with the other co-sponsor Rep. Todd Jones and with many stakeholders, from state agencies and courts to the insurance industry to non-profit mental health providers and others interested in providing the best care to those with mental and substance abuse disorders. I look forward to hearings beginning soon in the House Health and Human Services Committee. Stay tuned.

HB 752 Psychiatric Advance Directive
We passed an overdue good bill to authorize you to create an advanced directive regarding psychiatric care, to be utilized should you become unable to make your wishes known when under medical care for other reasons.

HB 873 Gwinnett County Redistricting
There was intense and lengthy floor debate about the redistricting of Gwinnett County that is expected to substantially change the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners. Based on partisan disputes, the process bypassed the local delegation and ignored the map recommended by the Democrat Gwinnett Board of Commissioners after five public hearings, in favor of a map created by the Republican statehouse members from Gwinnett backed by the Republican House leadership. This very visible and emotional dispute will be repeated I fear in disputes in Clarke and Cobb counties and perhaps elsewhere based on partisan interests and power struggles.

HB 1181 Limitations on Certain Large Development Authorities
I am evaluating this bill, which would limit the power of certain development authorities, in conjunction with my bills 66, 923, and 924. I am hoping for a vigorous debate in committee on all these bills involving issues of transparency and balancing of economic development interests among stakeholders.

BUSY WEEK!
Always happy to welcome Girl Scouts to the Capitol. After this photo and meeting legislators, most troops went on a scavenger hunt around the Capitol to locate among other things the bronze bust of Girl Scout founder, Juliette Gordon Lowe. Do you know where that is? (If not, please come visit your Capitol sometime!)
To recognize Women’s Heart Disease Day on the House floor, we wore red!
COVID STILL WITH US...
At the Capitol, we are tested twice a week and required to wear masks on the House Floor. I hope you and your loved ones are staying well. Please take advantage of these resources to keep yourself and other safe.



THANK YOU!
I appreciate your interest and advocacy. Please reach out to me by email or phone to let me know your thoughts about proposed legislation or community concerns.

I look forward to meeting with you virtually on Wednesday night!

QUICK LINKS FOR YOU
You can search for and track bills, watch the House (or Senate) in Session, watch committee hearings, monitor legislation by committee, and find contact information —- all on the revamped General Assembly website. Here are quick links:


Make your views known. Write to the leaders:

Coverdell Legislative Office Building
18 Capitol Square, Suite 604
Atlanta, GA  30334
404-656-0265