The Georgia House of Representatives has passed an ethics-reform bill and has sent it on its way to the state Senate for its consideration and action. But don't get out the confetti just yet.
With what could be an endless series of fiscal crises facing the federal government during the next few months, now is a good time to check where Congress stands in its deficit-reduction efforts. After two years, here's the scorecard: middle-class families and the military, $1.5 trillion in budget cuts and reduced public investments over 10 years; wealthy households, $620 billion in fairer taxes; corporate America, nothing.
Imagine a business that oversees massive construction projects but doesn't have to worry about completing them on time or within budget. Hard to believe a company like that could stay in business, right?
Why not shut the federal government down? Congress has been shut down for decades now, accomplishing nothing of any real significance in Washington for a very long time, so what would be the big deal? Would anyone really notice?
I was in my mid-40s, attending one of my daughter's T-ball games, when the gentleman sitting next to me asked, "Which one is your grandkid?"
I understand babies are adorable, and it's hard to overcome the compulsion to pinch their chubby, pink cheeks and grab their tiny fingers. But for the sake of germ-fearing parents everywhere, I certainly wish people would learn to keep their hands to themselves.
A pile of automatic spending cuts, commonly known as the sequester, kicked in Friday, and while the impact of the $85 billion in cuts slated for this year won't immediately be felt, the potential for damage to our fragile economy has been done.
The Ogeechee Riverkeeper organization held its annual gala over the weekend with a fete at Fort McAllister State Historic Park - a fitting location along the banks of the river itself. Despite the evening's less-than-desirable weather, the event was a hit by all accounts. Good food, good music, good company and a worthy cause seemed to help turn the soggy conditions into just another part of the fun.
My recent observations on the lack of respect given public-school teachers in Georgia engendered a lot of responses, but none better than this story sent to me by my friend, David Egan, co-director of the Initiative to Protect Jekyll Island and a former educator himself.
Tuesday, Feb. 19: After a long weekend at home, we're back in business this morning and our first action is to pass the 2013 amended budget out of the Appropriations Committee. The state's budget runs on a fiscal year from July 1-June 30 and has to be amended midyear primarily to account for revenue adjustments and K-12 student population growth.
The Georgia General Assembly saw the completion of the 22nd day of the 2013 legislative session, officially crossing through the mid-way point.
I can remember writing an article almost five years ago titled, "The Long-Term Care Cruise." Wow, how time flies. The article was a comparison of living in a senior community to living on the high seas using a cruise ship as a permanent retirement abode.
Having a baby is costly in ways I did not foresee. Of course, I knew there would be added expenses in medical bills, childcare, diapers, formula and clothing. But I'm surprised at the amount of money my family wastes on things that don't seem to be to my baby's liking.
An intriguing piece of legislation dropped into the hopper in Atlanta this week has, so far, exactly one signature on it - that of its sponsor, Sen. Josh McKoon (R-Columbus). It deserves at least a close look. The essence of the bill, S.B. 175, is that state legislators who run for federal office must either vacate their legislative seats within 30 days after officially declaring their candidacy, or officially end that bid for higher office by notice to the Federal Election Commission before that 30-day period ends.
Earlier this year, it seemed there might be some hope for Capitol Hill when Congress dealt easily with raising the debt ceiling. But don't let that single episode fool you. As President Obama and House Republicans circle each other over the forthcoming budget cuts known as the "sequester," it's a reminder that Congress and the White House have a complicated legislative agenda ahead - and that none of the items on it will come easily.
It looks like our legislators are about to lose one of their most cherished perks: free football tickets. Bless their hearts.
With the use of terms like sequestration, BRAC and budget cuts, it is easy to see and feel the concern in today's Army.
I consider myself a pretty eco-conscious mom. Not only do I want to do what's best for our planet, I want to set a good example for my daughter, Reese.
As the fall season approaches, I think of cooler temperatures and the beautiful fall foliage. Growing up in Pennsylvania, the trees were spectacular in color. As a kid we used to collect the leaves and then place them between two pieces of wax paper. We would then run a warm iron over the wax paper until the two pieces bonded, preserving the leaves inside.
A good many members of Congress seem to be perfectly content to just sit back and watch the nation's defenses, both domestic and abroad, walk a netless, high-wire tightrope. There is no other way to explain why they continue to let something called "sequestration" continue to blindly whack away at defense programs, military personnel and other vitally important costs. …
It seems too many loved ones recently have said good-bye to this vale of grief and sorrow and said hello to sweet eternity. Heaven is blessed, but I am distressed.
Editor, Last Saturday's used-book sale hosted by the Friends of the Richmond Hill Library was a rousing success.
Monday's news that a shooting rampage left 12 dead at the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., was jarring and also left us asking the one question that matters most and yet is hardest to answer.
In our lives, there are places and things we remember. I remember one event as if it were yesterday.
Dear Syrian rebels: I thought I'd take a minute to correspond with you as you resume your efforts to overthrow Syrian dictator Bashar Assad.
In the past several years, I have had as much luck visiting the historically preserved home of iconic Southern writer Eudora Welty as I would have had when she was alive. The front door always is shut to me.
If this were the world it should be, the front-page, above-the-fold headline on this and other newspapers Friday would have been the Thursday announcement that Voyager 1, a NASA spacecraft launched 36 years ago, had crossed the boundaries of our solar system, becoming mankind's first emissary to the stars.
In typical scatter-brained-mom fashion, I set out last Saturday morning to assemble what was supposed to be an easy dinner in the Crock-Pot, only to realize I forgot one key ingredient.
As Washington swirls with proposals, counter-proposals and political brinksmanship in response to diplomatic efforts on Syria, the situation has a lot of people scratching their heads. Couldn't President Obama and Congress have handled this differently?
I believe I have said this before, but I have a friend that has a shirt that reads, "Gettin' Old Ain't For Sissies!"