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Day 18 - February 12, 2007

The Senate passed a bill today to allow the residents of Dunwoody to incorporate into a city. Senators debated Senate Bill 82 for about an hour and a half, before passing it 38 to 15. The bill moves on to the House.

The Senate also passed legislation this afternoon which prohibits registered sex offenders from taking pictures of minors. Senate Bill 1 was suggested on the website, which allows citizens to suggest legislation to lawmakers.

The House passed legislation that will allow gun owners to carry firearms anywhere inside their vehicles. Currently permit-holding gun owners must carry their weapons in plain view on car seats, dashboards, or inside glove compartments or consoles.

Sen. Chip Pearson is sponsoring legislation to make Georgia an RV-friendly state. Senate Bill 87 will direct the department of transportation to take the necessary steps to make this happen. SB 87 passed without opposition and now moves to the House.

The House agreed to raise the salaries for Supreme Court Justices, as well as for judges for the Court of Appeals and Superior Courts. The judges affected in House Bill 119 have not had a raise since 1999.

The House also voted to approve House bill 120, which will allow Appellate Court Judges to be reimbursed for some travel expenses in the same manner members of the General Assembly are reimbursed.

House Bill 171 cleared the House today with no opposition. It will allow auto owners to sell or dispose of cars for scrap or parts even without the title to the vehicle.

The House Higher Education Committee heard presentations from some of Georgia's major universities today about emerging technologies for the 21st Century. The presidents from the University of Georgia, Georgia State University, and the Medical College of Georgia spoke to the committee about what their universities are doing in the field of technology.

Saturday was Family Day at the Capitol. Legislators invited their families as well as members of the general public to visit the Capitol to see just what the Georgia General Assembly is all about. Sandra Parrish recaps some of the highlights of Family Day 2007.

The Senate recognized today the state archivist who discovered Georgia's copy of the Declaration of Independence. A copy of the Declaration was sent to all 13 states at the time by order of President of the Continental Congress, John Hancock. Georgia's copy was thought lost until it was recently discovered bound in a mislabeled volume in the State Archives.

All that and more, tonight on Lawmakers.