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February 16, 2005

Governor Sonny Perdue today signed Senate Bill 3, Tort Reform legislation
into law. The bill caps non-economic damages for pain and suffering at
$350,000 or just over $1 million for multiple defendants. The Governor
signed the bill in a ceremony at Northside Hospital in Atlanta,
Lawmakers David Zelski has that story.

The Wireless Privacy Act passed the Senate Science and
Technology Committee today. Senate Bill 46 would require cell phone
service providers to obtain consent from customers before their contact
information is published in any directory. Lawmakers Chriss Knight has more.

Democratic leadership says the HOPE scholarship is under siege. Today Minority Leaders Representative DuBose Porter and Senator Robert Brown cited two pieces of legislation they say put the future of the program in danger, including the Governor's proposed website.

Senate Bill 4, a measure designed to balance state and federal road fund allocation passed the Senate today. The bill would take interstates out of the Congressional balancing equation. Lawmakers Jesse Freeman has the details.

The House Education Committee today approved Senate Bill 34, a piece of Governor Perdue's education legislation. The bill would create the Georgia Master Teacher and Academic Coach program. Lawmakers Angelena Washington has more.

Gerald Bryant talks with Tom Crawford , National Editor of Capitol for our weekly Wednesday update about the goings-on under the gold dome.

The votes just weren't there to pass Senate Resolution 34, a
Constitutional Amendment that requires a two-thirds majority. The
measure that would expand the authority of school districts to use local option sales taxes for things other than capital outlay projects while rolling back property taxes.
Opponents say the legislation would open the door to funding local
school systems through sales taxes rather than property taxes. Sponsor Casey Cagle moved to table the bill before a vote could be taken.

House Bill 166, the "Health Share" Volunteers in Medicine Act
touched off a tort reform debate in the House today. The measure would
grant immunity from individual liability to those medical professionals
who volunteer their services. If a patient wanted to bring charges, the
suit would take place in State court. We'll have the highlights of that