Gold Dome Update  
Highlights from the House  
Week Nine

It is hard to believe that we have already completed nine weeks of the legislative session. Friday, March 10th, brought to a close day 31. With the Crossover deadline behind us, we began to concentrate on hearing and voting on the many Senate bills up for review. The final days of any session are hectic as we work to ensure we pass sound policy for the benefit of our Georgia citizens. 

Agricultural Measures

Last week, agricultural measures were a top priority as we passed two Senate bills for the betterment of our state’s largest industry. The first measure, Senate Bill 69, would eliminate the double registration requirements for those handling any certified organic food products in Georgia.Under this legislation, certified organic producers would only be required to register with USDA. The second Agricultural bill passed was Senate Bill 78, which works to alleviate costly regulations within the foodservice industry. This bill would authorize the AG Commissioner, to issue exemptions or waivers to rules regarding food contamination and misbranding within grocery stores and meat markets making certain food productsThis bill allows the Commissioner to modify all or part of a food safety requirement if the rule creates an obvious hardship, impairing one’s ability to continue business practices 


Improved access to quality healthcare continues with the passage Senate Bill 102 which works to incentivize statewide health care facility improvements, specific to cardiac care. Sadly, Cardiovascular disease claims the lives of nearly 23,000 Georgians each year, making it the leading cause of death in our state. In an effort to provide improved cardiac care, this bill creates the Office of Cardiac Care (OCC) within the Department of Public Health. The OCC would be responsible for designating qualified hospitals throughout the state as “emergency cardiac care centers.”  SB 102 also allows hospitals to apply through the OCC to be designated as an emergency cardiac care center and receive grant funding if needed. We are hopeful that the improvement of cardiac care in our state will grant citizens with the quick and quality care they need and save lives. 

Notable Resolutions

Last week we passed House Resolution 389, which would create the House Rural Development Council. This Council will be tasked with finding ways to promote our rural communities through economic development, while working to identify the various challenges facing our less populated areas. Appointed members will explore legislative solutions in policy areas such as education, infrastructure, health care access and economic growth incentives to revitalize rural areas. The council will begin their two-year study, beginning this April and hold meetings throughout rural Georgia on a regular basis to study relevant issues.

House Resolution 492 recognized March 6th under the Gold Dome as Law Enforcement Appreciation Day! We took time to give thanks to the 54,000 men and women who put their lives on the line to protect and serve us. Throughout our state’s history we have lost 699 officers in the line of duty, with nine of those occurring in the last year alone. Although our brave officers deserve to be recognized for their courage every day, we were proud to pay special tribute to those we have lost as well as those still serving.  

House Resolution 490 recognized Major General James E. Rainey as well as service members of the Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield’s Third Infantry Division. The House recognized their heroism and service for the Third Infantry Division Day at The Capitol. The Third Infantry Division has one of the most successful combat records of any U.S. Army division, having been deployed in both world wars, the Korean War, the Persian Gulf War, Operation Iraqi Freedom, and played a key role during the Cold War. Fort Stewart is home to more than 20,000 active duty military soldiers and has been distinguished as the top U.S. Army installation worldwide six times, having created 51 Congressional Medal of Honor recipients.

In closing I would like to congratulate the Warner Robins Air Logistics Complex on being honored for the second consecutive year as the top depot maintenance unit in the Air Force. The complex was named the winner of the 2016 Air Force Maintenance Effectiveness Award, Depot Category in an email announcement from the Pentagon earlier this month! This is a huge honor and we are proud to have Robins AFB in our community. 

As we move into the final stretch of the 2017 legislative session, feel free to reach out to me with concerns or questions! I will continue to keep you updated on our efforts for simple, smart and effective government. Thank you for the honor of allowing me to represent our community under the Gold Dome and please let me know if you need anything at all.   


Shaw Blackmon

Representative Shaw Blackmon
District 146
Phone: 404-656-0177
Address: 501-E Coverdell Legislative Office Building
Atlanta, Georgia 30334

Rep. Shaw Blackmon represents District 146.  He currently serves as a Deputy Whip and as a member of  Ways & Means, Economic Development and Tourism, Special Rules, Insurance and
Governmental Affairs Committees. Shaw is also a member of the Military Affairs Working Group.