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Under the Gold Dome: Day 16

Full coverage of the 2011 legislative session

POSTED: February 18, 2011 1:01 a.m.

Highlights

State lawmakers held off voting on a bill that would require markings on identification for people convicted of felonies.

House Bill 91 would show law enforcement officials that the person was charged with one of the state's seven violent crimes - murder, kidnapping, rape, armed robbery, aggravated sodomy, aggravated child molestation or aggravated sexual battery. After probation or parole, the person could apply for a traditional license or ID card without the mark.

Rep. Timothy Bearden, R-Villa Rica, called his bill a public safety issue.

"When our public safety officers stop someone on the street, they have no idea who they're stopping," said Bearden, the chairman of the House Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee. "I would say it almost levels the playing field to provide additional information for our law enforcement."

However, House Minority Leader Stacey Abrams, D-Atlanta, raised questions about the constitutionality of the idea, saying the mark could cause discrimination when the license is used for private and civil actions such as cashing checks or renting a car.

The vote will come before the House again next week before heading to the Senate for approval.

Senate

Senate Bill 102: Revise the definition of firearm and change the qualifications for firearms licenses.
SB 103: Increase the amount of public debt permissible to supply a deficit from 1 percent to 5 percent of total revenue receipts.
SB 104: Prohibit policies by local governments that limit or restrict the enforcement of immigration laws.
SB 105: Under the Juvenile Justice Department, allow parole panels to give parole to a child who committed certain felony acts.
SB 106: Change the duties and fees for the State Licensing Board for Residential and General Contractors.
SB 107: Increase the penalties that can be imposed for contempt of court in superior courts.
SB 108: Change the universal service fund for natural gas competition and allow funds from the sale or lease of public utilities facilities to be used for their creation and maintenance.
SB 109: Hold the 2012 general primary election on the last Tuesday in July and hold qualifying on the third Wednesday in May.

House

House Bill 264: Allow the economic development commissioner to oversee Georgia Council for the Arts planning and budgets.
HB 265: Create the 2011 Special Council on Criminal Justice Reform for Georgians and the Special Joint Committee on Georgia Criminal Justice Reform to study the state's criminal justice structure.
HB 266: Allow constables to carry weapons.
HB 267: Require the Department of Education to develop a strategy regarding the dangers of sending texts featuring explicit images.
HB 268: Require notice of rezoning hearings with a sign posted on the property.
HB 269: Require a driver who is granted a license due to an impairment of his or her parent to be accompanied while driving.
HB 270: Allow for nonpartisan election of sheriffs, district attorneys and solicitors-general.
HB 271: Enact the Georgia Student Extracurricular Partnership Act to allow charter school students living in the attendance zone of the public school to participate in extracurricular activities.
HB 272: Delete provisions that allow a rehearing through the order of an associate juvenile court judge.
HB 273: Provide standards for contract carriers transporting railroad employees in Georgia.
HB 274: Require a permit to operate an inert waste landfill.
HB 275: Include nurses in the type of health care providers authorized to give an order not to resuscitate.
HB 276: Allow parent conferences when a student receives a failing grade on two consecutive report cards in a subject or course and punish a parent or guardian who fails to attend a conference.
HB 277: Extend the open season for deer hunting to the third Monday in January for Harris, Talbot, Taylor, Macon, Peach, Houston, Twiggs, Wilkinson, Washington, Jefferson and Burke counties.
HB 278: Require nourishment or hydration for patients receiving surgical or medical treatment.
HB 279: Increase the age for child safety seats in vehicles to age 8.
Both chambers also passed various resolutions to recognize special days and people.



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