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Politics

Governor Deal Watching Washington

Governor Nathan Deal says failure to reach an agreement on debt ceiling will cause serious problems for Georgia. Federal government funds nearly one third of state's budget. Medicaid would be hit hardest.

HB 87 Having Unintended Consequences

Agriculture and hospitality industry officials told state Senators Wednesday that the new immigration bill continues to hurt Georgia companies. One official said some businesses are beginning to avoid hiring people with ethnic last names.

Rep. Franklin Dead at 56

A conservative state lawmaker known for his plethora of “no” votes has died. Rep. Bobby Franklin was found dead at his home in Marietta. He was 56. Franklin was elected to the statehouse in 1996.

White, Minority Wealth Gap Widens

A Pew Research Center study shows the wealth gap between whites and minority residents in the U.S. widened sharply during the Recession. The finding is especially notable in Georgia, where the minority population is large and growing.

More Counties Mull Property Tax Hikes

A number of counties statewide have made, or are considering, significant hikes in property taxes to make up budget deficits. It’s become a last ditch option for local governments that have already cut spending to the bone. Tuesday night, local commissioners in the metro Atlanta counties of Clayton and Cobb narrowly approved property tax hikes. Other counties are considering raising property taxes, including Crisp and Stewart counties in southwest Georgia.

FAA Shutdown Could Mean Travel Savings

Congress did not extend funding for the Federal Aviation Administration Friday. Passengers at Georgia airports won’t see delays or flight cancellations this weekend. But travelers could save some money.

State Videotapes Execution

A Georgia man convicted of killing his parents and sister was executed Thursday after the courts allowed what was likely the nation's first video-recorded execution in almost two decades. Andrew DeYoung was put to death by lethal injection at the state prison in Jackson after courts turned down his appeals.

Congressman Wants FDIC Review

Georgia Rep. Lynn Westmoreland wants the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. to take a closer look at how it goes about closing banks. Westmoreland said agency regulators have flexibility in how they work with banks that might be in trouble, but they are not using it out of fear they will back a bank that still ends up failing. The north Georgia congressman said he worries the FDIC is closing community banks that could ultimately survive with some help.

Georgia DOT Watching Washington

Transportation officials say they could lose a large percentage of funding. GADOT officials traveled to Washington last week. One proposal cuts funding by 34-percent.

Lawmakers Adopt Redistricting Rules

State lawmakers met Wednesday to adopt guidelines for how to redistrict the state. They’re redrawing political regions to reflect population shifts since the last census. Principles include ensuring districts are equal in population and maintaining communities, counties and cities within the same districts.

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