On the steps of the historic state Capitol building in Milledgeville, Governor Nathan Deal signed two new bills Wednesday morning.
Senate Bill 39 is designed to establish mental health courts in Georgia's court system. This means, a court can now refer a mentally ill person to the new mental court system.
However, defendants charged with murder, rape, armed robbery, aggravated sexual battery, or child molestation will not be allowed into the new mental court system.
Deal called the bill a step forward for the state.
"Establishing mental health courts in our state is a crucial part of the approach we are taking. We believe it will provide judicial supervision, and appropriate treatment and rehabilitation," Deal said.
Senate Bill 178 was also signed, and will give senior citizens more options for choosing long term care and assisted living situations.
Beth Cayce works for the Georgia Assisted Living Federation, and she says they have wanted a bill like this for more than 16 years.
"It will give seniors a choice, so they can avoid costly nursing home stays, and have more affordable care with the use of medication assistance, and be able to determine where they want to live for the end stages of their lives," Cayce explained.