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Day 31- March 12, 2008

After lengthy debate, the Senate today tabled a measure dealing with red light cameras. House Bill 77 deals with the licensing of traffic-control signal monitoring devices. It would make it more difficult for local governments to install new so-called “red light cameras”. At issue: whether the cameras exist for public safety or revenue generation. Lawmakers Sandra Parrish reports.

Purveyors of alcoholic beverages may be one step closer to being allowed to sell alcohol on Sundays in Georgia. Two measures before the House Regulated Industries Committee today have been targeted as possible vehicles for an amendment repealing the “blue law” that prohibits package sales on Sundays. Senate Bill 385 provides for the licensing of limousine carriers for alcohol sales. Senate Bill 454 allows Sunday sales of alcohol in public stadiums, coliseums and auditoriums in any county in which Sunday sale is authorized. Lawmakers Bridget Snapp brings us the latest on committee action.

It’s the end of the shortest legislative week thus far in the 2008 session of the Georgia General Assembly. David Zelski checks in with Tom Crawford, National Editor of CapitolImpact.com to discuss the highlights.

The Senate today passed legislation to make dogfighting a felony. House Bill 301 targets those who knowingly participate, wage money, promote, advertise or allow dog fighting on their property. The measure would make the offense punishable by up to five years in prison and a fine of at least $5,000. Convicted owners of dogs impounded as a result of dogfighting will be required to pay the cost of spaying and neutering.

Several measures passed the House last night during the lengthy Crossover Day session. House Bill 1299 is a measure that would allow the State of Georgia to take over Grady Memorial Hospital if the hospital fails to transition to non-profit status. House Bill 515, the Lottery for Education Act, deals with the bequeathment of Georgia Lottery annuities. We’ll have the highlights of the debate on both of those measures.

Legislation targeting illegal immigrants involved in traffic accidents is expected before the Senate Public Safety Committee today. House Bill 978 would allow law enforcement to seize the vehicle of any illegal immigrant involved in a traffic accident. Lawmakers Minoo Hosseini has more.




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