Nathan Deal to sign sweeping gun bill next week | Political Insider blog

Gov. Nathan Deal plans to sign legislation next week that would vastly expand where Georgians can legally carry firearms.

House Bill 60, which passed in the final hours of this year’s legislative session, would expand where Georgians may legally carry firearms, including schools, bars, churches and government buildings. A recent analysis also said it could let felons use the state’s “stand your ground” rules to claim self-defense if they feel threatened.

Gun rights groups cheered the news that Deal would sign the measure, which critics have dubbed the “guns everywhere” bill, on Wednesday at a north Georgia event. GeorgiaCarry.org, which had instructed supporters to deluge Deal’s office with calls of support, told its members they could back off.

Deal will join House Speaker David Ralston at the bill signing event at a riverfront pavilion in Ellijay, which is in Ralston’s district, said Brian Robinson, the governor’s spokesman.

via Nathan Deal to sign sweeping gun bill next week | Political Insider blog.

Cost of Braves stadium deal rises $18 million | www.ajc.com

Cobb County political leaders last fall assured taxpayers that their financial commitment toward a new Atlanta Braves stadium would be capped at $300 million to build the stadium and another $35 million for 30 years of capital maintenance.

But an Atlanta Journal-Constitution investigation has found the county will borrow an additional $18.2 million when it issues bonds to pay for the project. The new costs are needed to cover $15.1 million for the first year of interest on the debt, along with another $3.1 million to pay the county’s bond attorney and other issuance costs.

That brings the amount borrowed to $386 million, not the $368 million told to the public and outlined in a preliminary agreement with the Braves that was approved by the county commission in November.

via Cost of Braves stadium deal rises $18 million | www.ajc.com.

Second amendment and state school chief race. Grin and bear… | Get Schooled | www.ajc.com

Is the education establishment really afraid of teaching the most basic foundation of our republican democracy – the Bill of Rights?

I will have to add Nancy Jester’s “Bear Arms” campaign T-shirt to my list of unique political ads. (I already added one today – the “Elect Jesus” bumper sticker I spotted on a car on I-285.)

Jester is the former DeKalb school board member running for state school superintendent on the GOP ticket.

She is selling this “Bear Arms” shirt for $20 on her campaign site with this explanation: In the early 2000s, the Georgia Department of Education adopted a social studies curriculum that is almost completely devoid of education on The Bill of Rights in elementary school. Yet, in third grade, we teach our children about the nine important people who “expanded rights.” Those nine people are: Paul Revere, Frederick Douglass, Susan B. Anthony, Mary McLeod Bethune, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Eleanor Roosevelt, Thurgood Marshall, Lyndon B. Johnson, and César Chávez.

The front of the shirt shows a guy in a 2nd amendment T-shirt with “Teach the bill of rights” and Jester’s name. The back of the shirt says in smaller letters, “Stay Calm and Vote Jester.” The site says Jester gets $5 from the sale of every shirt.

I understand this T-shirt’s theme could appeal to some voters, but it also has the potential to run off others who may question why bearing arms is being referenced in any form in a race for state school chief.

What do you think of this approach for a school superintendent candidate?

via Second amendment and state school chief race. Grin and bear… | Get Schooled | www.ajc.com.

Reed: Braves could extend lease, but must be 5 years – Atlanta Business Chronicle

Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed says the Braves could stay longer at Turner Field should construction fall behind on the team’s new stadium in Cobb County. The catch is that the team must commit to five years.

The Braves are scheduled to leave Turner Field after the team’s 2016 season. The team has in its contract a five-year option to stay at the site, reports Atlanta Business Chronicle broadcast partner WXIA-TV.

Reed doesn’t seem inclined to cut the team any slack on the time frame.

Several developers have expressed interest in the Turner Field property, Reed said Thursday. “We could sell Turner Field right now,” he added.

“They gotta take it all,” Reed said smiling. “Can’t take a piece. You gotta take all five years.”

via Reed: Braves could extend lease, but must be 5 years – Atlanta Business Chronicle.

Atlanta medical marijuana company poised to distribute ‘Haleigh’s Hope’ cannabis – Atlanta Business Chronicle

Atlanta’s first medical marijuana company has gained exclusive rights to distribute a high cannabidiol (CBD) strain of marijuana developed specifically for medical use.

Halcyon Organics’ has licensed a strain named ‘Haleigh’s Hope’ that has a 22:1 CBD to THC ratio, which means that the strain provides the medicinal benefits of marijuana without the high that causes impairment. Continue reading

Jack Kingston Courts Base in Georgia Senate Race | RollCall.com

GLENNVILLE, Ga. — Rep. Jack Kingston, who’s represented Savannah in Congress for the last two decades, was at home Thursday evening in nearby Tattnall County, where elected officials and candidates streamed in to put their face in front of the loads of sheriffs, police and first responders gathered on the grounds of a rural pond house.

The Republican was one of three candidates vying for the party’s Senate nomination to attend the 27th annual Law Enforcement Appreciation Cookout, held just outside Kingston’s district. More than 1,000 people from around the state were on hand, sipping light beer and munching on pork barbecue, smoked chicken, Cadillac rice and Brunswick stew. Kingston, the only candidate with a campaign booth, could barely turn around without running into someone he knew, inevitably wearing his campaign sticker.

Southeast Georgia is Kingston country. His campaign has been working for months to broaden his brand beyond this area and into vote-rich Atlanta ahead of the competitive May 20 primary. But on this day, the congressman was sewing up his base.

“While it’s good to come down here doing a little politicking — nothing wrong with that — I’m glad to be here because I like Tattnall County, and I’m going to keep coming no matter what happens,” Kingston said on stage in very brief remarks to the crowd.

One of three members of Congress in the Senate primary, Kingston is regularly in the top two in primary polling, along with Perdue. He turned in the strongest first fundraising quarter among Republicans, launched his fourth statewide TV ad Thursday morning, and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce endorsed Kingston just an hour before the cookout kicked off.

“What we’re doing is combining high tech and high touch, and we’re doing well in both categories,” Kingston said in an interview. “We’re on target, so we feel good about it.”

Still, many in the party believe the unpredictable race for the seat of retiring GOP Sen. Saxby Chambliss is wide open. With no candidate likely to take a majority of the vote next month, it’s a fight to finish in the top two and advance to the July 22 runoff.

Handel, who has trailed Kingston and Perdue in fundraising and airtime, launched her first statewide TV ad this week featuring Sarah Palin’s recent appearance in Georgia on Handel’s behalf — which the campaign said brought a fundraising surge of $200,000 in two weeks. The Handel campaign has felt a renewed sense of momentum since a video emerged of Perdue denigrating Handel’s lack of a college degree during a January campaign appearance. The free media came at the right time.

In an interview, Perdue said he was “a little overzealous” with that comment and that any Republican nominated will be “more qualified and a better candidate than anybody the Democrats are going to put up.”

via Jack Kingston Courts Base in Georgia Senate Race.