The Second Continental Congress met in Philadelphia on July 1, 1776 to debate a resolution by Richard Henry Lee that the colonies declare their independence of Britain.
The first U.S. Postage stamps were issued on July 1, 1847 in New York City.
The Battle of Gettysburg began on July 1, 1863.
Theodore Roosevelt and the Rough Riders charged San Juan Hill in Cuba during the Spanish-American War on July 1, 1898.
Coca-Cola marketed its current formula for the first time on July 1, 1916.
On July 1, 1956, a new Georgia flag bearing the state seal and a version of the Confederate Battle Flag became effective after being adopted by the Georgia General Assembly in the 1956 Session.
The current Georgia Constitution became effective on July 1, 1983 after its approval in a referendum during the November 1982 General Election.
Georgia native Clarence Thomas was nominated to the United States Supreme Court by President George H.W. Bush on July 1, 1991.
Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections
The Washington Post reports that the Trump campaign has begun vetting former Georgia Congressman and House Speaker Newt Gingrich as a VP candidate.
Donald Trump’s campaign has begun formally vetting possible running mates, with former House speaker Newt Gingrich emerging as the leading candidate, followed by New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. But there are more than a half dozen others being discussed as possibilities, according to several people with knowledge of the process.
Given Trump’s unpredictability, campaign associates caution that the presumptive Republican nominee could still shake up his shortlist. But with little more than two weeks before the start of the Republican National Convention, Gingrich and Christie have been asked to submit documents and are being cast as favorites for the post inside the campaign. Gingrich in particular is the beneficiary of a drumbeat of support from Trump confidants such as Ben Carson.
With Gingrich, 73, or Christie, 53, the 70-year-old mogul would be joined by a well-connected Republican who shares his combative style and his ease at being a ubiquitous media presence. Both men have won Trump’s favor by actively supporting him — Gingrich primarily through television appearances and Christie through behind-the-scenes talks with party leaders and leading GOP donors.
Mid-year campaign contribution reports are coming due for the period ending June 30th, with the grace period ending July 8th.
Thursday marked the end of the filing period for the June 2016 campaign contribution disclosure reports for local and state office candidates. Now, candidates have a grace period of five business days to file the report outlining their campaign’s contributions and expenditures.
The grace period ends July 8.
If the report isn’t filed by July 8, it is considered late and fines will start to accrue on July 9, according to Janine Eveler, director of Cobb Elections.
Secretary of State Brian Kemp shuffled the heads of the Georgia Board of Nursing and the Board of Cosmetology, drawing the ire of nursing board members.
The board members themselves learned just two weeks ago that Cleghorn, whom many on the board give much credit for the recent improvements, was taking his talents to regulate the state’s barbers and beauticians.
Chairwoman Brenda Rowe said the move and lack of consultation by Kemp with the board left her “very, very concerned.”
“It was made unilaterally,” Rowe said at a hastily convened board teleconference Monday. “The board didn’t provide any input into it.”
Board member Dellarie Shilling put her distress in even more stark terms: Kemp is being reckless. Changing directors will hamper the board’s progress, meaning it will take even longer to deal with dangerous nurses.
“I just find it very difficult to say why you would knowingly put patients at risk,” she said to a member of Kemp’s staff.
The proposed staffing moves come as the nursing board also is losing its nursing education consultant, another key staff member it took years to find and hire. That person submitted her resignation and is leaving at the beginning of July, meaning the new director won’t have her help as he learns the ropes.
Leaning on a state law that gives them specific power to approve its executive director, the board voted unanimously to reject Kemp’s choice.
Kemp’s answer? Too bad. Kemp writes the checks.
“This is not a proposal,” Lisa Durden, director of the professional licensing division of Kemp’s office. “This is a directive from Secretary Kemp. This is what’s best for our agency.”
The nursing board licenses twice as many Georgians and the next largest professional board, and the nurses are exerting pressure on Kemp to rethink.
That last part is the politically-important part. After teachers, the nurses are probably second on the list of professionals I wouldn’t want to get into a political fight with.
Just in time for our annual celebration of the
regulatory nanny state freedom, new Georgia laws are going into effect today. Here is a complete summary of all statues passed by the 2016 Session of the Georgia General Assembly.
The Buzz Brockway “Don’t Tase Me, Bro!” bill means that stun guns are now allowed on college campuses. Note this applies to public colleges and universities, not to private institutions.
“Michael’s Law” requires bouncers and patrons at bars to be at least 21 years old, although younger folks may enter with a parent, guardian, or 21-year old spouse, or for a concert.
House Bill 941 by State Rep. Rich Golick (R-Smyrna) revises grand jury procedures when law enforcement officers are involved in a use of deadly force.
House Bill 727 gives local governments more power to regulate the use of fireworks.
The laws state fireworks cannot be sold to anyone under the age of 18, and anyone buying fireworks must provide identification. Fireworks cannot be used indoors or within the right-of-way of a road, railroad, or other transportation infrastructure.
Under the new law, fireworks may be used between 10 a.m. and 9 p.m., but on July 3-4, the time limit extends to 11:59 p.m. Additionally, fireworks are prohibited within 100 yards of a jail, power, electric, or water plant, historic site, hospital, park, or other public facility. Permits to use fireworks in locations such as parks may be issued by the proper authorities upon request.
Also, use of fireworks is illegal if the individual is under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Unexpected fireworks noise can cause some veterans increased anxiety, so websites such as militarywithptsd.org offer veterans free yard signs asking neighbors to “please be courteous with fireworks.”
Under House Bill 767, drivers are required to move over for utility workers the same way as previously required for law enforcement vehicles.
House Bill 767 requires any motorist approaching utility linemen at an active work site, as indicated by traffic cones or flashing yellow, amber, white or red lights, to change lanes or reduce their speed to a reasonable and proper speed below the posted speed limit.
Any motorist who does not change lanes or drop their speed to avoid the utility workers can be fined up to $250 per incident. The new bill, effective July 1, applies to all types of utility workers, including electric, natural gas, cable and telecommunications workers, right-of-way crews or utility contractors.
“The Honorable Jimmy Carter Cancer Treatment Access Act” affords patients with advanced stage four metatastic cancer greater access to more aggressive treatment options under their health insurance plans.
The DeKalb County Commission voted to approve a proposal by Commissioner Nancy Jester (R-Dunwoody) to hold three meetings a year at 5:30 p.m. at various locations across the county with public comment time at 6:30 p.m. Jester would like to expand that to eventually require at least one evening meeting per month.
Andy Miller of GeorgiaHealthNews.com reports that UnitedHealthcare and Piedmont Healthcare failed to renew their agreement, which could affect some consumers.
The dispute is largely over reimbursement rates. Minnesota-based UnitedHealthcare, the nation’s largest health insurer, said in early June that “Piedmont Healthcare wants to raise the cost of care at its hospital by nearly 30 percent over the next three years.” Local businesses can’t absorb such big cost increases, United said.
Piedmont’s chief operating officer, Greg Hurst, told GHN that United’s assertion about rates was not accurate. He said Piedmont was asking for single-digit rate increases annually.
He added that United appears to have a pattern nationally of letting hospital systems go out of network. Piedmont said in a press release this week that it urges United “to engage in good-faith negotiations with us to reach a fair and equitable agreement that allows members of our community in-network access to Piedmont facilities and the Piedmont Clinic physicians that they know and trust.”
The Newnan Times-Herald looks at how this might affect families.
“I’m especially distraught about possibly having to end the relationship my four children have developed with the pediatrician that has cared for them their whole lives,” Preston said.
Negotiations between hospital company Piedmont Healthcare and insurer UnitedHealthcare regarding in-network services continue to both plague and disappoint Piedmont patients and, according to a representative of the nearby Piedmont Newnan Hospital, officials are expecting a less-than-ideal outcome.
As if choosing health insurance wasn’t tricky enough, now patients may be forced to either keep the doctor they like and pay out-of-pocket expenses or giving up their doctor to save money.
“As a result [of the contract ending], Piedmont facilities and Piedmont Clinic physicians will be out-of-network for United commercial healthcare plans members,” the Piedmont official added.
“Our patients with a United commercial health plan can continue receiving care with their Piedmont Clinic physicians,” the Piedmont Newnan spokesperson explained. “However, United’s unwillingness to negotiate a new agreement means patients may be forced to pay higher out-of-pocket costs for care.”
LaGrange Interim City Manager Meg Kelsey is the finalist for the permanent City Manager position. Meanwhile, the City Council and Mayor finalized a $106 million dollar budget for FY 2017.
Third Congressional District
The Fayette County News reports that Mike Crane, who was the only candidate to show up, met an enthusiastic audience of supporters at what was advertised as a forum hosted by the Fayette County Republican Party.
The Fayette County Republican Party hosted an enthusiastic candidate forum Monday night in advance of the July 26 Primary Election Runoff, for which early voting starts Tuesday, July 5, but one could have almost heard “America the Beautiful” playing in the background as Third District congressional candidate Mike Crane took the stage in the absence of his opponent Drew Ferguson.
The forum’s format included asking both candidates in each contest the same questions and giving them a certain time in which to respond. As Ferguson, former mayor of West Point, did not attend Monday’s event, Crane, a sitting State Senator from Coweta County, had the floor to himself, and he used the opportunity to talk about his priorities should he win the Third District seat.
It was Crane’s closing comments that closed the forum Monday night, but he was preceded by incumbent 73rd District State Representative John Yates (R-Griffin) and his challenger Karen Mathiak (R-Griffin). The winner of that Republican runoff will face Rahim Talley (D-Hampton) in the fall.
The first forum panelists Monday were Griffin Judicial Circuit District Attorney candidates Ben Coker from Thomaston, an 11-year assistant district attorney in the circuit, and Tyrone resident Rudjard Hayes, a former assistant district attorney who is now a criminal defense attorney.
During that first portion of the forum, Hayes several times said he was more suited to be district attorney because of his “maturity,” saying he would rather call it maturity than age. Coker refuted the notion, saying 11 years as an assistant district attorney has matured him.
Another forum July 7 at the Callaway Conference Center, 220 Fort Drive in LaGrange is expected to feature Crane and his opponent, Drew Ferguson, as well as Troup County school board candidates John Asbell and Cathy Hunt.
Developer the Integral Group is considering a Plan B for the Doraville site formerly home to a GM automotive plant, as the DeKalb County School System continues to resist participating in a Tax Allocation District (TAD).
The more than 160-acre property has been called by state and local leaders one of the most promising redevelopment sites in the Southeast, but its future has been in limbo for months after the DeKalb County school board decided not to take part in a tax allocation district or TAD.
Doraville and DeKalb County signed on to the TAD, but the school board declined to take a vote on the matter. Backers of the project, known as Assembly, say a TAD with all three jurisdictions on board would be sufficient to fund about $180 million in new infrastructure, including a street grid and a covered road to the MARTA station for a project aiming to create a new downtown for Doraville.
It’s possible a different arrangement, such as a tax abatement from a local development authority, could reduce or eliminate property tax revenue generated for the local governments and schools. And in that case the schools might not have a say in the matter. Those tax breaks could then be used by the developer to seek financing for site improvements.