Georgia legislators have OK’d a historic gift cap on the last day of the legislative session to rein in lobbyists’ influence. Critics say it has too many loopholes but all parties say it has already changed the political culture at the Gold Dome.
Thursday morning Senator Jeff Mullis, Chairman of the Senate Rules Committee, presented his substitute to the House ethics bill in front of that committee. Mullis, a Republican from Chickamauga, made drastic changes. His version rewrites the legislation to include a $100 gift cap, which the Senate passed early in the legislative session.
Lawmakers in the Georgia Senate are expected to publicly release their version of proposed limits on lobbyist expenditures. The Senate Rules Committee planned to meet Thursday to discuss its proposed legislation.
Proposed rules would ban lobbyists from buying airfare for Georgia's state lawmakers under an amended plan from a leading Republican. The latest changes to House Speaker David Ralston's bill would prohibit lobbyists from buying free airplane tickets for lawmakers.
Gov. Nathan Deal added a new wrinkle to the state’s ethics conversation in his State of the State address Thursday. He said any new ethics rules should apply to all state and local elected officials in addition to General Assembly members.
If Governor Nathan Deal’s Eggs and Issues speech Wednesday is any indication much of his State of the State address Thursday will be a mix of good and bad news. Issue one is paying for Medicaid in the Peach State. During his Wednesday address to more than 2,000 members of Georgia's business and legislative community at the Georgia World Congress Center, Governor Deal rolled out cuts to the budget of the Department of Community Health.