Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘legislature’

Read Full Post »

Several new media things jump out today… Facebook is such an amazing tool for tracking legislation going through the legislative process. The Sunday Sales/Senate Bill 10 may or may not be before the Rules Committee today.

Advocates such as Rich Sullivan and co. are at the Georgia State Capitol now Tweeting and posting Facebook updates about this one bill’s progress.

Lobbyista, media, advocates and ordinary folk, take note! Could save tons on tasseled loafer polishing costs by not having to hoof it along the hallways of the Gold Dome. Watch and learn from the comfort of your connection.

Then again, just being at the Capitol on a busy day is exciting in itself. Go live and in person whenever you can. Just report back for us what is going on… as it happens. Social media tools make it very easy to do. (They’ve got great wi-fi at the Dome.)

Other quick note… when giving interviews to text-only outlets avoid passive language, such as Michael Bond’s here. While it’s earnest, and might work in a broadcast environment, it always prints bad.

Councilman Michael Julian Bond pointed out that Sandy Springs and DeKalb County have full government participation and the continual council snubs are “almost getting to the point where it is beginning to be offensive.”

Elsewhere, Bob Barr believes in the intended effects of mass media propaganda. The best money can buy. Cute, huh?

One more… from what I hear, bloggers are already revolting on donating free content to @11AliveNews/@gannett‘s Where U Live project. Must give back, news farms! Must.

Think of better ways to give back to the blogger (on-air time comes to mind), and you might get more better content from ’em.

Today is the deadline to nominate your fave Georgia journo/blogger now for The Atlanta Press Club 2010 awards. It’s easy to do. That’s it for the morning. Make it a great use of new media day!

Read Full Post »

Folks… this has gone WAY beyond kinda funny. The Georgia Legislature has been raiding (and levying) *fee* funds in Georgia like drunks to an open bar at a redneck wedding reception. (Keep in mind that fees are imposed by legislation; taxes are put before the voters. For the most part.)

Thus, *fees* and not *taxes* are popular in the Georgia Legislature. And the state rakes in plenty of dough from levying fees. Dough that makes our big icky budgeting problems go away quickly, so that our legislators don’t have to do hard work, such as figuring out how to balance the budget legitimately… and thus risk pissing-off all their lobbyist cronies in the process of legitimate hard work going on.

From the AJC today, January 18, 2011:

It [the fee] has become just another source of income for them (R legislators),” Wingate said.

Todd Edwards of the county commissioners association said state officials are “eroding the public trust, eroding transparency” by not using the fees for their intended purposes. “It has become a tax,” he said.

The “t” word is anathema to Republican leaders, who have promised not to raise taxes.

But “user fees” are different because they are designed to pay for specific things — like road maintenance, court services or landfill cleanups. Last session, the GOP majority pushed and won approval for user-fee increases worth about $90 million a year.

Will things change this year? Of course not! Not unless the people who have a stake in where the fee *trust funds* should be going (the places they were intended to go) start raising all kinda serious heck. Maybe they need your help to do so.

Read Full Post »

Prepare to get screwed. Big Business in Georgia is already getting loads of what we call tax *exemptions* (think of how Delta is not taxed for fuel, the way we are taxed for gas purchases). Despite every report and recommendation and committee convened under the stars, Big Biz gets pretty much whatever they send their lobbyista into the Georgia Legislature to ask the legislators for.

But we, individual consumers, don’t. Unless you can afford to hire Troutman Sanders! Some of what’s being, er, hashed out in regards to tax reform in Georgia is mentioned here, from the AJC:

The film credit (for film industry) is just one fight among dozens that reform advocates face if they wish to make the exemption-heavy sales tax code into a predictable revenue machine.

Recommendations to increase the sales tax on cigarettes and add new sales taxes on purchases by nonprofits or the private sales of used cars face a similar uphill climb.

How reassuring! At least we face an *uphill climb* before getting it, right?

Read Full Post »

Nathan Deal’s first emergency in office, starting on Day One, included the glaringly un-populist behaviors of:

1.) Telling Georgians they’re on their own out there in snowed-in conditions.

2.) Using state office/power to shuttle legislators ONLY around in government vehicles (remember, in the emergency we’re under).

3.) Not answering any questions from press.

What an amazing 48 hours of utterly UN-responsive new leadership in Georgia! Is this going to be a great 4-years around here or what?! From Political Insider:

“The weather has to cooperate in order for us to do what we really need to do. So I would just urge everyone to make sure they take care of themselves, and that they do not put themselves in a position of danger,” a sweatshirted Deal told reporters invited into his meeting with disaster advisors.

But the governor, in his second day on the job, refused to respond to any questions.

There’s an emergency in Georgia, that’s fer sure. And it’s not just snow and ice remaining, uncleared, on our roads.

Read Full Post »