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Budget Day 3- January 24, 2008

House Speaker Glenn Richardson addressed a luncheon of the Commerce Club of Atlanta today. Richardson told the crowd that for the state to come through with public funding for cash-strapped Grady Hospital, the hospital must appoint a non-profit board to oversee the funds. Yesterday Sen. Vincent Fort and the Grady Coalition held a rally to advocate for public funding for Grady. Rep. Jan Jones held a press conference today to announce findings from a survey on charter schools. Rep. Jones says the survey shows most Georgians are dissatisfied with the current public school system, and support efforts to change. Rep. Jones is sponsor of House Bill 881, which would create a state commission that along with local school systems could approve a charter school. HB 881 passed unanimously out of subcommittee and is now up before the entire House Education Committee. The Joint Appropriations Committee wrapped up its final day of Budget Hearings today. Among those state departments before the committee today were Human Resources, Community Healthy, Corrections, and Juvenile Justice. Dept. of Corrections Commissioner James Donald told the committee that he supports Day Reporting Centers as an alternative to prisons for drug offenders.

All that and more, tonight on Lawmakers.