Georgia’s 2022 Legislative Session begins, local lawmakers talk goals

Middle Georgia lawmakers shared Monday what they're hoping to accomplish during the 2022 Legislative Session.
Legislative Session

There isn’t usually so much excitement in the air, but there was Monday.

Many lawmakers were dressed in red and black in honor of the Georgia Bulldogs taking on the Alabama Crimson Tide in the College Football Playoff National Championship Game in Indianapolis, Indiana.

While the excitement of the game was on everyone’s mind, the House and Senate did have to get through their normal first day business.

Democratic Minority Leader for the Georgia House of Representatives, James Beverly, says he’s hoping for sensibility over the next 40 days.

“Democrats in the house are certainly going to talk about common sense gun control,” he said. “We’re going to talk about the election for sure, local redistricting.”

Representative Dale Washburn says his focus for this session is mental health care funding as well as healthcare funding for rural areas. He also says there’s a budget surplus.

“So if there’s an opportunity to lower taxes, we’re always interested in lowering taxes for our citizens,” he said. “So we’re looking forward to a productive session.”

Representative Miriam Paris says the Appropriations Committee meets next week and will set the tone for the rest of session. She says she’s focusing on Medicaid expansion because the cost of healthcare causes financial strain for many Georgians.

“The number one reason for going bankrupt is their medical bills are out of control,” she said. “So if we could just get some relief from the medical standpoint, I think that would be a great thing.”

State Senator John Kennedy says they’ll announce senate priorities later this week. They include computer data protection, the Safe Communities Act and Critical Race Theory.

He also shared that the redistricting maps from Special Session were signed into law at the start of this year. He says there are two lawsuits concerning the maps but he hopes they won’t get any traction.

“The maps that we have are very good, very fair, very legal maps,” he said. “It will now sort of make its way through the courts and we’ll follow that to see how that progresses.”

To look at live streams and daily status reports throughout Legislative Session:

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