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February 14, 2005

The Senate has agreed to House changes to Civil Justice or Tort Reform. Senate Bill 3 now caps non-economic damages in medical malpractice
cases at $350,000, or $1,005,000 in aggregate. It also extends more
protections to physicians in Emergency Rooms by requiring proof of
gross negligence in order to receive any compensation for injuries.
We'll have the highlights of the debate and interviews with bill
sponsor Senator Preston Smith as well as Minority Whip Senator David Adelman.

The AARP, or American Association of Retired Persons, kicked
off their three week legislative lobbying emphasis today. Their
Valentine's Day push is to protect the ones you love. The focus of today's press conference was the AARP's opposition to tort reform in it's current version. Lawmakers David Zelski has more.

Incorporating Sandy Springs in North Fulton County has been a
battle for years under the gold dome. Atlanta Lawmakers feel creating
the city of Sandy Springs will result in a huge tax base loss for
Atlanta, while Sandy Springs legislators feel the area has earned the
right to be their own municipality. Chriss Knight has more about the House Governmental Affairs committee's discussion of House Bill 37.

Governor Sonny Perdue today unveiled the Georgia College 411
website today. The site is a resource about Georgia's University system
and allows Georgia students to apply for the HOPE scholarship online.
Lawmakers Jesse Freeman has that story.

Senate Majority Leader Bill Stephens and House Majority Leader Jerry Keen
both held their weekly press conferences today. We'll have the
highlights of the week's legislative priorities for the Republicans in
both chambers.

Lawmakers was the first to bring you news of the largest methamphetamine bust
in Georgia history Thursday night. Tonight, David Zelski gives an
update on legislation designed to curb the manufacture of the drug in
our communities.

The Georgia State Capitol plays host to hundreds of tour groups every year. We'll follow along as third graders from Bullard Elementary School in Cobb County learn about the Capitol building and have a brush with celebrity. Lawmakers Angela Von Drasek has that story.