State lawmakers worked into late Tuesday evening on the next to last day of the General Assembly session. Movement on a Sunday alcohol sales bill, immigration, and the state budget was included on Tuesday's agenda. The final day of the Session is Thursday.
Sunday Alcohol Sales - The bill that would pave the way for the Sunday sale of alcohol in Georgia stores is headed to Gov. Nathan Deal for his signature. The House passed the measure Tuesday night. The bill would allow local governments to ask voters to decide whether they want to permit Sunday sales. Deal has said previously he would sign the bill if it got to his desk. If he does, voters could get the measure by this fall.
Immigration - The House Tuesday night restored a controversial provision to a measure, requiring companies to use a federal database to check the legal status of new hires.
State Budget - The Georgia Legislature has given final passage to an $18.3 billion fiscal year 2012 budget that pours additional state dollars into tax investigators, Medicaid and domestic violence shelters. Gov. Nathan Deal bumped up the revenue estimate, effectively giving legislators $47 million more to spend.
Aviation Tax Breaks - The Georgia Senate has extended a tax break for Delta Air Lines over Democratic objections that the company doesn't need a giveaway. Supporters say the state must work to keep Delta Georgia-based because the company brings millions in economic development.
Assisted Living Home Measure - A bill to allow more of the state’s elderly to stay in assisted-living facilities is a step closer to law. The House gave it nearly unanimous approval Tuesday. It must now return to the Senate to ok changes before a trip to the Governor’s desk. The legislation would let assisted living centers provide more services. Under current law, residents of the facilities can be forced into nursing homes if they’re unable to take their own medications or are immobile.
Pharmacy Drug Sales - A bill passed by the House Tuesday would restrict the sale of the decongestant pseudoephedrine to only pharmacies in Georgia. The decongestant is a key ingredient in the illegal drug methamphetamine - the use of which has become a growing problem in the state. The bill now goes to Governor Deal’s desk for his signature.
Contributors: Edgar Treiguts