The Watcher
  News from Georgia Watch
November 2017
Welcome New Board Members!
Grené Baranco, Mercedes-Benz of Buckhead

Grené’s automotive experience spans over 20 years in various positions including Sales Manager for Infinity of Beverly Hills, Baranco Pontiac Buick/GMC, Mercedes-Benz of Buckhead and as the General Manager for smart center Buckhead in Atlanta, Georgia. Currently she is the Sales Manager at Mercedes-Benz of Buckhead. In 2013, she worked for two years at Clark Atlanta University as the digital communications manager. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Georgia State University in Atlanta. She also is a graduate of the National Automobile Dealers Association Dealer Academy in McLean, Virginia.
Erin C. Fuse Brown, Associate Professor, Georgia State University College of Law

Erin is a faculty member of the Center for Law, Health & Society. Her areas of research and expertise include health care prices, medical billing, the Affordable Care Act, health care competition and regulation, surprise medical bills, consumer protections for patients, and genetic research and privacy. She received a J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center and a M.P.H. from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
Jason Doss, The Doss Firm, LLC

Jason Doss is the owner of The Doss Firm, LLC, an Atlanta-based law firm devoted to representing consumers across the country in a variety of areas including investment disputes and consumer class action litigation. He has helped recover millions in damages from well-known financial services companies on behalf of individual investors who lost their life savings due to bad investment advice and in some cases, financial fraud. Jason earned his J.D. from Florida State University and his B.A. from the University of Florida.
Tedra Cannella, Butler Wooten & Peak LLP

A partner at Butler Wooten & Peak LLP, Tedra Cannella’s legal work focuses on products liability, breach of fiduciary duty, business torts, wrongful death, and trucking and automobile wrecks. She has helped her clients reach settlements and obtain verdicts totaling over $70 million. Tedra attended law school at the University of Georgia on scholarship and, after law school, clerked for the Honorable Hugh Lawson, Chief Judge of the U.S. District Court in the Middle District of Georgia.
CFPB Rule Against Predatory Lending at Risk
On October 5, 2017, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) issued its long-awaited small-dollar lending rule. The rule stems from over five years of careful research conducted by the CFPB, which recognized the devastating impact of the predatory lending industry on millions of Americans. Georgia Watch believes the newly issued CFPB rule is critical to Georgians, particularly our lowest income consumers, because it provides protections that shield them from harmful practices that persist in our State.

Georgia Watch supports the CFPB rule, but we are concerned about what might happen next. Congress could repeal the predatory lending rule under the Congressional Review Act with a simple majority vote in both the House and Senate. This worry comes on the heels of the vote to scale back a different CFPB rule that would have restored consumers’ right to band together in court when major financial institutions harm them.

Supporting Community Health Workers in Georgia
Since May 2017, Beth Stephens, Senior Director of Public Policy & Advocacy for Georgia Watch, has been serving on the Georgia Community Health Worker Advisory Board. The Board has been helping to align efforts to create a statewide CHW program . CHWs have a trusted relationship and demonstrated knowledge of the communities they serve, helping improve the lives of patients all across our state. Georgia Watch wants to see formalized recognition of this growing group of professionals . At a forum held yesterday, stakeholders provided input on a set of recommendations that would include standardized training and certification and models for payment/reimbursement for CHW services. The Advisory Board's work is overseen by a Community Health Worker Steering Team comprised of representatives from the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH), Kaiser Permanente, United Way of Atlanta, Morehouse School of Medicine, Grady Health System, Atlanta Regional Commission (ARC), Atlanta Regional Collaborative for Health Improvement, and The Task Force for Global Health. You can learn more about this work here .
In the News
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