Political Notes – House continues to stall Sunday sales bill


Legislation authorizing local referendums on the Sunday package sales of alcohol (SB 10) remains lodged in the House Rules Committee, which again declined Tuesday morning to put the bill on the House calendar for a vote.

Rep. Wendell Willard (R-Sandy Springs) requested the inclusion of SB 10, which he called “a good local government bill,” on the House’s calendar for Wednesday. Rep. John Meadows (R-Calhoun), the committee chairman, would not call for a committee vote on the bill.

The House leadership is said to be holding off on a floor vote on Sunday sales while it wrestles with another ticklish issue, the bill that incorporates several recommendations for revising the Georgia tax code.

While House members won’t be voting on the Sunday sales bill Wednesday, they will have the opportunity to vote on SB 122, a bill that would enable private companies to work with local governments on the impoundment of reservoirs.

Challenge to new cities

The Legislative Black Caucus has filed a federal lawsuit challenging the General Assembly’s actions of several years ago in creating new municipalities in DeKalb and Fulton counties: Sandy Springs, Johns Creek, Chattahoochee Hills, Dunwoody, and Milton.

The lawsuit argues that normal legislative procedures were bypassed to create these majority white cities that are encompassed within county governments run by black majorities, which allegedly resulted in violations of the federal Voting Rights Act.

Celebratory gunfire

The House voted 139-23 on Monday to pass a resolution (HR 341) urging more public awareness of the dangers of “celebratory gunfire” that sometimes results in injury or death from stray bullets.

“There are times we all want to celebrate special occasions, but it is never right to celebrate in a way that endangers human life — it is never right to celebrate with random gunfire,” said Rep. Michele Henson (D-Stone Mountain).

The resolution was introduced in the wake of a celebratory gunfire incident last Dec. 31 that caused the death of Marquel Peters, a four-year-old from DeKalb County. Peters was struck and killed in church by a bullet believed to have been fired by a New Year’s Eve reveler.

Teilhet’s new job

Former state legislator Rob Teilhet has been named executive director of Georgia Conservation Voters, an organization that promotes the passage of environmentally friendly legislation.

Teilhet, a Cobb County lawyer, stepped down last year after serving eight years in the Georgia House to run unsuccessfully for attorney general.

© 2011 by The Georgia Report


Tags: John Meadows , private reservoirs , Sunday alcohol sales , Voting Rights lawsuit , Wendell Willard