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General Assembly is done

It is official, the 2010 legislative session of the Georgia General Assembly adjourned Sine Die and came to an end midnight on Thursday, April 29. After spending months devoting our time and commitment in Atlanta under the Gold Dome. After being in session for 40 legislative days spread out over four months, continual committee meetings, agreements and disagreements, the members which represent people from all over our state came together and finished the work of the people. The two days of session this week the members worked into the late hours passing legislation. Key pieces of legislation were passed this ...

May 05, 2010 | By State Rep. Ron Stephens Special to the News | Opinion


New transportation funding will set off scramble

The Georgia Legislature has finally approved a funding mechanism for transportation. Next comes the jockeying for placement on project lists among advocates, agencies and authorities for the various modes. Just because there's finally an opportunity for transportation funding, however, doesn't mean throwing good money after bad. Taxpayers must be vigilant and demand sound solutions and bang for their buck – or their 1 percent sales tax, to be precise.

May 05, 2010 | By Benita Dodd Guest columnist | Opinion


Timing is a little suspicious?

I don't give a flip whether Jason Carter is elected to the Georgia state senate or not. He won't represent me because I don't live in Georgia's 42nd district. What I do care about is that his grandfather, Jimmy Carter, is at it again.

May 05, 2010 | By Dick Yarbrough Columnist | Opinion


$17.9B budget passes as session adjourns

The 2010 session of the Georgia General Assembly came to an end late last Thursday night, several hours after lawmakers finalized a $17.9 billion state budget for fiscal year 2011. Having started Jan. 11, this was the longest legislative session on record since the 1880s.

May 05, 2010 | By State Rep. Al Williams Special to the News | Opinion


Random misses, near hits?

Some recent thoughts, in no particular order. No particular order at all.

May 03, 2010 | By Jeff Whitten Editor | Opinion


Afraid of the truth?

Well, there you go! I spend time and take up valuable space in this paper telling people that offshore oil well drilling has a sterling reputation of success where oil spills are a concern and bingo! We now have the first serious oil rig spill in the history of the industry. I hope and pray the flow is stopped before the slick reaches the fragile eco-systems of the Chaudeleurs Islands National Wildlife Refuge.

May 03, 2010 | By Roy Hubbard Columnist | Opinion


Not a good time to drill, baby, drill

Just a few weeks ago, most seemed glad to hear that President Barack Obama planned to open up areas off the Atlantic - and Georgia - coast to offshore drilling for oil. But there should be some second thoughts and careful assessment in the wake of the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, which is getting worse by the day.

May 03, 2010 | | Opinion


Area coastal conservation

In 2001 saltwater fishermen in Richmond Hill formed a chapter of the Coastal Conservation Association or CCA. The objective of the CCA is to conserve, promote and enhance the present and future availability of these coastal resources for the benefit and enjoyment of the general public. CCA is a national organization with chapters in 17 coastal states. From the very beginning Richmond Hill has had a very strong chapter. Today there are 150 local members. Four of these members represent the state CCA board: Mike Odom, Fraser Bowen, Coley Bryant and Jimmy Roberts. Mike Odom represents Richmond Hill and Georgia ...

April 30, 2010 | By Angus McLeod Guest columnist | Opinion


Get involved in local government

In the unlikely chance that you missed hearing, reading or watching something on TV about it, last week was Georgia Cities Week, a Georgia Municipal Association creation that seeks to promote city government.

April 30, 2010 | | Opinion


No strings attached

By Victor Pisano

April 29, 2010 | Victor Pisano Columnist at large | Opinion


Kudos to qualifying candidates

Last week was Georgia Cities Week - a Georgia Municipal Association creation that is aimed at informing the public on the importance of cities. Nearly 100 municipalities in the state participate in the event in one form or another, including Hinesville, Midway, Flemington and others.

April 29, 2010 | | Opinion


The high cost of putting people in jail

 Each day across Georgia, the state Department of Corrections prepares enough meals to feed the population of the city of Marietta. Breakfast and lunch are served to nearly 60,000 adult prisoners. Paying for 31 state prisons annually costs taxpayers $1 billion, including the cost to manage 150,000 parolees.

April 28, 2010 | By Mike Klein Guest columnist | Opinion


First poll results arein on governor's race

Now that the legislative session is (drum roll, please) history, it is time to turn our sights to the governor's race.

April 28, 2010 | By Dick Yarbrough Columnist | Opinion


Think trees when you turn on faucet

When we think of forests, majestic trees, precious wildlife and clean, fresh air might come to mind. We probably don't think about the water we drink.

April 28, 2010 | By John Rosenow | Opinion


Approved budget has cuts for everyone

Day 37 (Tuesday, April 20, 2010): With only four days remaining in this year's session, we get down to business today by passing the amended FY 2010 budget that runs through June 30 of this year. The historic drop in state revenue is evident here as the FY 2010 budget has been reduced to 2004 and 2005 levels as revenues have fallen $1.6 billion since the original 2010 budget was passed last April. Totaling $17.7 billion, the average agency has been cut 18 percent while vital services such as Medicaid and Education have been cut only 9 ...

April 28, 2010 | By State Sen. Buddy Carter Special to the News | Opinion


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Articles by Section - Opinion


Thoughts inspired while working out

I made my first visit to the workout gym in over a year the other day. As most of my readers know I like to perform my fitness regimen in my garage where it is private, easily accessible…and most important - free! I happened to be out of town and could not fit my garage in my suitcase, so I decided to make a visit to the local gym for some climate-controlled exercise. Who knew exercising in an air-conditioned room could be so nice.

July 08, 2014 | By Rich DeLong | Opinion


More transparency needed, still

As lawmakers continue debating ethics and transparency in Georgia government, with the hourglass emptying fast on the 2013 session, yet another independent nonprofit think tank has given the state a less than encouraging grade.

July 08, 2014 | By Columbus Ledger-Enquirer | Opinion


Improving FOIA will make it easier for everyone to access gov't

Earlier this year, the Veterans Affairs Administration denied the Tampa Tribune's Freedom of Information Act request for the names of VA hospitals where veterans died because of delays in medical screenings. To hide this information, the VA used the "pre-decisional" exemption, simply stating that the requested documents were "preliminary" communications and could thus be withheld. This misapplication was not an isolated incident. Agency use of this b(5) catch-all exemption has skyrocketed to more than 12 percent of all FOIA requests, often to prevent embarrassment or hide errors and failures–ignoring President Obama's clear instructions to the contrary ...

July 03, 2014 | By Nate Jones Special to the News | Opinion


His plate is home grown

I can and have assailed you with facts and figures on the economic importance of agriculture to this state, and I probably will again.

July 03, 2014 | By Don Gardner | Opinion


Georgia's role in fighting terrorism

On Sept. 11, 2001, our way of life in the United States changed forever.

July 03, 2014 | By Buddy Carter State Senator | Opinion


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