This Week in the Senate—February 20-23, 2024

February 26, 2024

Week seven under the Gold Dome has concluded, and we're swiftly approaching an important milestone known as "Crossover Day" on February 29. This marks the deadline for all bills to pass through their originating chamber, commonly referred to as the house of origin. Our advocacy for Georgians has yielded significant accomplishments, including property tax relief, tort reform, reduction of regulatory burdens, enhancements in public safety, and much more. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to my Senate colleagues, particularly those within the majority caucus, for their unwavering dedication to advancing legislation on behalf of all Georgians.

As a member of the Senate Republican Caucus, I'm delighted to announce the successful passage of all priority bills of the majority caucus out of the Senate, highlighted by the approval of Senate Bill 449. This bill, aimed at exempting certain military medical personnel from examination requirements, eliminates unnecessary bureaucratic hurdles and bolsters Georgia's reputation as the premier state for business.

The Georgia Senate also discussed and passed its amended budget for Fiscal Year 2024. This budget increases funding for maintaining safe and efficient road infrastructure and provides essential support for industries such as agriculture, manufacturing and logistics. It also allocates resources to enhance retirement and healthcare benefits, vital for retaining our state’s workforce. Our commitment to a balanced budget ensures Georgia's efficiency, fiscal conservatism and attractiveness for investment.

In addition to championing our majority caucus' priorities, I remained focused on advancing my individual legislative goals. I'm proud to announce that SB 375 successfully cleared the Senate floor this Wednesday. I took the initiative to sponsor this legislation with the aim of incorporating the Commissioner of Veterans’ Service as a member of the Behavioral Health Coordinating Council. This strategic move ensures that the council comprehensively considers and addresses the distinctive needs and viewpoints of veterans concerning behavioral health in its deliberations and actions.

Furthermore, I joined my Senate colleagues in passing several bipartisan pieces of legislation aimed at supporting both veterans and families. The Georgia Senate approved multiple measures designed to offer essential services to our state’s veterans, and I was privileged to endorse this legislation. Having dedicated their lives to defending our country, it's crucial that we fulfill our commitment as legislators. Additionally, the Senate body voted on Thursday to pass Senate Bill 232, which would include additional fees for issuing marriage licenses to fund the State Children's Trust Fund and remove compensation provisions for probate court judges. The State Children’s Trust Fund is a program designed to support initiatives aimed at preventing child abuse and neglect and promoting child well-being.

Furthermore, my colleagues and I were delighted to be present on Wednesday for the swearing-in of Georgia’s newest Republican senator, Tim Bearden (R-Carrollton). Senator Bearden joins us at an important time for our state and I look forward to serving alongside him throughout the remainder of our legislative session.

As always, I want to invite students between the ages of 12 and 18 to serve as a Capitol Page. I encourage any students interested in the legislative process who want to spend a day at our Capitol to apply for our program using the link:

Please never hesitate to contact my office if I can assist with legislative matters. I hope to see you under the Gold Dome soon as the 2024 Legislative Session continues.

Senator Brian Strickland
Chairman, Senate Committee on Judiciary

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In 2023 the Georgia State Senate District 17 will encompass parts of Walton, Newton, Henry, and Morgan with over 150,000 registered voters. Brian Strickland entered his third full term in the Georgia Senate in 2021. Brian, his wife Lindsay, and their two children reside in McDonough, GA. Through Brian’s leadership position at the capitol where he fights for District 17, and all of Georgia, he has impacted Georgia for the better through various executed actions.  Not only did Brian support the First Responder bill which aids police, firefighter, and EMS personnel but he was a key player in the passing of the Georgia Criminal Justice reform bills and Georgia Surprise Medical bills. Above and beyond that, Brian labored to bring funding to Southern Crescent Technical College making it one of the top technical schools in Georgia and is constantly raising the bar in the fight against human trafficking.

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