Senator Kennedy: Week Five Under the Gold Dome
Monday, February 12th, 2024
We have officially completed five weeks of legislative business under the Gold Dome, and it’s hard to believe that we are nearly halfway through the 2024 Legislative Session. While I am proud of the legislative progress we have made as a Senate body, we have plenty of work left to do for both the 18th Senate District and our state. I am excited to work with my fellow senators and Republican caucus members to continue our mission of passing meaningful legislation for Georgia. We have enjoyed a highly effective session and biennium, and it’s important that we finish the drill.
This week, I am happy to report that Senate Bill 63 is headed to the Governor’s desk for signature. Senate bill 63, aims to strengthen the requirements for violent repeat offenders to post bail. It is my hope that this legislation will create safer communities and protect Georgia families from criminal acts by keeping repeat offenders off streets.
I am also proud to report the passage of SB 362 through the Senate this week. I applaud Sen. Mike Hodges (R-Brunswick) and Governor Brian Kemp for prioritizing this legislation. Like all elections in our state, SB 362 provides for a secret ballot process when big-labor advocates push to unionize Georgia’s workforce. We must protect the ability for workers to vote their conscience without fear of retribution in the workplace. I look forward to advocating for this piece of legislation as it heads to the House of Representatives in the coming weeks.
Additionally, my colleagues and I joined members of the House to hear from Chief Justice Michael P. Boggs as he delivered the State of the Judiciary address. During his address, Chief Justice Boggs updated the Georgia General Assembly on several initiatives including a proposal to increase judicial security and staff retention efforts that should be considered this year.
This week, Senators took part in their respective appropriations subcommittees. In these hearings, members listened to budget requests from state agencies related to the Amended Fiscal Year 2024 budget. As I mentioned in our week two update when legislators participated in “Budget Week,” these meetings are essential as we work to maintain our AAA bond rating and our booming business climate. Unlike the Washington elite, Georgia manages our tax dollars responsibly at every level of the appropriations process. Georgia’s working-class families deserve legislators dedicated to balancing dollars and cents, and the Senate’s Republican majority is proud to continue leading this charge.
Each week under the Gold Dome, constituents, associations and organizations alike speak to legislators and host events with public officials. The senate body also recognized Thursday, Feb. 1st as “Macon Day at the Capitol” and I appreciate so many fellow Macon-ites that made the trip to your capitol to talk with me about issues facing our community.
As always, I want to invite students between the ages of 12 and 18 to serve as a Capitol Page. This program encourages Georgia’s next generation of leaders to participate in the legislative process by providing a front-row seat to a day’s work in the Georgia Senate. Many of our current legislators participated in this program and first became interested in serving Georgia citizens because of their time spent as a Capitol Page. I encourage any students interested in the legislative process who want to spend a day at our Capitol to apply for our program using the link:https://www.legis.ga.gov/news/senate/page-program-2024
Please never hesitate to contact my office if I can assist with legislative matters. I hope to see you under the Gold Dome soon as the 2024 Legislative Session continues.