News from under the Gold Dome

Posted

Legislative week in review

The Georgia House of Representatives reconvened for another impactful week of legislating on Monday, February 28. The House had a full schedule all week, and we are counting down the days until Crossover Day, which is the last legislative day that a bill can pass out of one chamber and still be eligible for consideration this year. As such, we worked diligently to pass dozens of bills on the House floor in preparation for this critical deadline.

On Legislative Day 22, my colleagues and I passed historic tax relief legislation that would help millions of hardworking Georgians in our state. Our state’s economy has bounced backed exponentially over the last year, resulting in an unprecedented budget surplus of $1.6 billion in undesignated funds. To that end, House Bill 1302 would fulfill the governor’s plan to give these funds back to Georgia taxpayers. This legislation would provide a one-time tax credit for eligible Georgia taxpayers who filed income tax returns in both 2020 and 2021. Based on their 2020 tax filer status, single tax filers would receive a $250 refund, head-of-household filers would receive $375, and those who file jointly would receive a $500 refund.

The House unanimously passed another bill to keep more hard earned dollars in the pockets of Georgians and reinforce our standing as a military-friendly state. House Bill 1064 would exempt up to $17,500 in military retirement income from state income taxes for retired service members under 62 years old. If a military retiree continues to work and earns at least $17,500, the retiree would be eligible for an additional exemption up to $17,500 in state income taxes for a total exemption of $35,000. If HB 1064 is passed and signed into law, it would become effective on July 1, 2022, and subsequently applicable to all taxable years starting January 1, 2022. We are honored that so many U.S. military retirees have already chosen to call Georgia home, and this legislation would greatly benefit these individuals, especially as the cost of living and inflation has increased recently.

Additionally, my colleagues and I passed two bills that would encourage hands-on agricultural experiences for Georgia students. First, House Bill 1303 would authorize the Georgia Department of Education (GaDOE) to implement agricultural education programs in all public elementary schools. This bill would also require schools to hire an agricultural education teacher for these programs, and the GaDOE would evaluate the success of the program at the end of this year. We also passed House Bill 1292 to ensure that students would not be counted as absent from school when they participate in our state’s invaluable 4-H activities and programs. These bills seek to educate and expose more Georgia students to our state’s agriculture industry and hopefully, encourage more students to explore one of the many careers in agriculture someday.

In other news, we were joined by Kirby Smart, head football coach for the University of Georgia Bulldogs, in the House Chamber on Tuesday. It was an exciting moment as Coach Smart was the first special guest invited to join us on the House floor since the COVID-19 pandemic began in March 2020. The House was proud to recognize Coach Smart for leading the Dawgs to their 2021 College Football Playoff National Championship victory, and we wish his team the best of luck as they defend their national championship title next season.

The week ahead

It is hard to believe that we are now in the final month of the 2022 legislative session. While I am legislating on behalf of our community over this next month, I hope you reach out to me with any questions or concerns you have about the legislative process or bills that may be pending.

Stay connected

I remain dedicated to serving your interests as your state representative, and I hope that you will contact me with any questions or concerns you may have regarding the legislative session or with any proposals or recommendations for future legislation.

You can also stay in touch by visiting our website at www.house.ga.gov to watch a live stream of the House in action, as well as archived committee meetings, and review legislation that we are considering.

Follow me on facebook for updates throughout the year.

Thank you for allowing me to be your representative.

Sincerely,

Representative Butch Parrish

Comments

No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here