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South Fulton reps chalk up winners, losers
by Noreen Cochran
March 25, 2014 03:46 PM | 2125 views | 0 0 comments | 13 13 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Midnight last Thursday brought an end to the 2014 session of the Georgia General Assembly, during which south Fulton delegation members made their marks.

District 61 State Rep. Roger Bruce, D-Atlanta, was the lead sponsor of House Bill 704, also known as the city of South Fulton bill, which did not make it through the session despite overwhelming support in the House of Representatives.

It won a 163-2 vote, opposed by fellow delegation member District 65 State Rep. Sharon Beasley-Teague, D-Red Oak, and District 108 State Rep. B.J. Pak, R-Lilburn, but was tabled in the Senate last Tuesday.

District 63 State Rep. Ronnie Mabra, D-Fayetteville, a freshman legislator, successfully steered what he called the “ambulance chasers bill” through the session.

“I am happy to report that I passed my first bill,” he said in a statement.

Mabra said the new law protects car wreck victims and their personal information by banning the solicitation, release or sale of automobile accident information after an automobile accident.

“[It] increases the penalties for buying it for the purpose of snagging clients for attorneys and doctors eager for the insurance claims,” he said.

Mabra’s HB 827 passed the House 168-1 but stalled in the Senate before Sine Die on Thursday. It would have allowed teenage license holders to drive to school at 5 a.m. instead of the current 6 a.m. start time. Its only opponent was District 51 State Rep. Wendell Willard, R-Sandy Springs.

District 62 State Rep. LaDawn Blackett Jones, D-Atlanta, scored on the win side as a co-sponsor of HB 804, which after Gov. Nathan Deal’s signature will allow abuse victims under 18 to testify by remote broadcast if testifying before the accused would cause serious physical or emotional distress.

Jones’ HB 903, which would have counteracted negative trends in foreclosure practices, never made it to a House floor vote.

District 64 State Rep. Virgil Fludd, D-Tyrone, co-sponsored HB 903 with Jones. Fludd also co-sponsored with Bruce a bill to allow school district taxes to be collected in the 1986 Fulton County Industrial District, which did not come to a vote.

Fludd cosponsored HB 816, regarding sales tax on delivery charges, which passed the House unanimously and the Senate 49-4 just before Sine Die.

Beasley-Teague and Fludd sponsored two local legislation bills benefiting Fairburn, which the Senate approved last month.

They will authorize Fairburn to commence redevelopment, create tax allocation districts and raise money through tax allocation bonds and a hotel/motel tax.

District 60 State Rep. Keisha Waites, D-Atlanta, sponsored House Resolution 1054 to honor the lives of the Atlanta children missing and murdered between 1979 and 1981, which included her cousin Eric Middlebrooks. District 55 State Rep. Tyrone Brooks, D-Atlanta, was a co-sponsor.

Waites’ HB 700, a law to correct disability access to the state Capitol and legislative office building, received two readings but no vote.

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