2015 Capitol Update – Week 3 – AFY 2015 Budget Passed

We’re gearing up

Amended Fiscal Year 2015 Budget

The House unanimously passed HB 75 the AFY 2015 budget this week, a mid-year adjustment of state revenues and expenses through June 30, 2015. This amended budget includes $276 million in “new” funds, seventy percent going to education. Additionally, $1.5 million funds continuation of Xpress bus service and $4.5 million supports routine maintenance projects at the Department of Transportation. The AFY 2015 budget also includes $4.8 million for clinical trials using cannabis oil as a treatment for children with certain seizure disorders.

The House recognized special visitors this week on National Guard Day, National Holocaust Remembrance Day, as well as our record winning Atlanta Hawks.

Bills of Interest

You may track all bills here. A few bills introduced this week that may be of interest include:

HB 1 Haleigh’s Hope Act providing medical cannabis oil for treatment of several listed conditions.
I have signed in support.

HB 49 Paperless Property Tax Billing provides choice to receive information electronically.
I am the author.

HB 56 No Knock Warrants to address policies for use of force, issuance of warrants, and documentation.
I support.

HB 57 Retail Solar Bill provides for financing of residential solar electricity generation to power owner-occupied homes.
I support.

HB 93 License Plate Data collected by law enforcement via license plate readers deleted every 30 days.
I have joined in support.

HB 112 Radar Systems designed to detect persons through wall prohibited.
I co-sponsored.

HB 122 State Income Tax Credit for electric vehicles eliminated.
I have signed in support.

Transportation Funding Act

No doubt, you have been reading about the state’s investment needs in our transportation system. This week, House Transportation Chairman Jay Roberts introduced HB 170 to begin the discussion on meeting our needs. The bill proposes to recalculate taxes on motor fuel as solely excise taxes and eliminate all sales taxes. Additionally, the bill would impose an annual feel on alternative fuel vehicles of $200 for personal vehicles and $300 for commercial vehicles. The proposal also includes the issuance of $400 million in bond debt to address our most pressing needs including deficient bridges.

The introduction of HB 170 begins the conversation of transportation funding. This is not a final product and I welcome your comments.