The blog.

16
Nov

Adoptable (Official) Georgia Dogs for November 16, 2018

Caroline ARF

Caroline is a young female Labrador Retriever mix who is available for adoption from the Animal Rescue Foundation Inc in Milledgeville, GA.

Caroline is approximately 14 months old and 50 pounds. She loves to play and spend time with her people! She would make a wonderful addition to any family!

Werther ARF

Werther is a male Labrador Retriever & German Shepherd Dog mix who is available for adoption from the Animal Rescue Foundation Inc in Milledgeville, GA.

Werther is a handsome guy with a personality to match!  He’s very sweet and well behaved and he LOVES other dogs! Werther is likely 3-4 years old and approximately 60 pounds.

Willy ARF

Willy is a year-old male Hound mix who is available for adoption from the Animal Rescue Foundation Inc in Milledgeville, GA.

Willy is a sweet and playful hound mix. He is only a year old so he is a lot of fun!

16
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 16, 2018

The Georgia Trustees visited the first group of settlers on November 16, 1732, the day before they were scheduled to depart England for the New World.

On November 17, 1732, the first English headed to colonize Georgia set off from Gravesend, England, down the Thames. Their supplies included ten tons of beer.

On November 16, 1737, the Georgia Trustees learned that England’s King George II would send 300 soldiers, along with 150 wives and 130 children to the settlement in Georgia.

On November 17, 1777, Congress submitted the Articles of Confederation to the states for ratification.

Abraham Lincoln began the first draft of the Gettysburg Address on November 17, 1863.

Lincolnatgettysburg

Abraham Lincoln traveled to Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on November 18, 1863.

On November 16, 1864, Sherman left Atlanta in smoking ruins.

A 2010 Wired article argues that Sherman’s rampage through Georgia and the Carolinas changed modern warfare.

Vengeance aside, the real objective of Sherman’s march was to cut the Confederacy in two, cripple Southern industrial capacity, destroy the railroad system and compel an early Confederate surrender. It was also intended to break Southern morale — in Sherman’s words, to “make Georgia howl.”

Sherman was vilified for his barbarism, but the Union commander was a realist, not a romantic. He understood — as few of his contemporaries seemed to — that technology and industrialization were radically changing the nature of warfare.

It was no longer a question of independent armies meeting on remote battlefields to settle the issue. Civilians, who helped produce the means for waging modern war, would no longer be considered innocent noncombatants. Hitting the enemy where he ate and breaking him psychologically were just as important to victory as vanquishing his armies in the field.

Sherman grasped this and, though he wasn’t the first military proponent of total war, he was the first modern commander to deliberately strike at the enemy’s infrastructure. The scorched-earth tactics were effective. The fragile Southern economy collapsed, and a once-stout rebel army was irretrievably broken.

Meanwhile, the marshals of Europe watched Sherman’s progress with fascination. And they learned.

Carl Vinson was born on November 18, 1883 in Baldwin County, Georgia. At noon on that day, U.S. and Canadian railroads implemented four time zones for the first time.

Efficient rail transportation demanded a more uniform time-keeping system. Rather than turning to the federal governments of the United States and Canada to create a North American system of time zones, the powerful railroad companies took it upon themselves to create a new time code system. The companies agreed to divide the continent into four time zones; the dividing lines adopted were very close to the ones we still use today.

Most Americans and Canadians quickly embraced their new time zones, since railroads were often their lifeblood and main link with the rest of the world. However, it was not until 1918 that Congress officially adopted the railroad time zones and put them under the supervision of the Interstate Commerce Commission.

Mickey Mouse debuted in a black-and-white film called “Steamboat Willie” on November 18, 1928.

On November 18, 1933, Franklin D. Roosevelt traveled from Washington, DC to Savannah, Georgia by train for Georgia’s Bicentennial and delivered a speech at Municipal Stadium.

Herman Talmadge was sworn in as Governor of Georgia on November 17, 1948, ending the “Three Governors” controversy. Click here for a review of the “Three Governors” episode by Ron Daniels.

Carl Vinson was honored on his 81st birthday in Milledgeville, Georgia on November 18, 1964; Vinson did not run for reelection in 1964 and retired after 50 years in office.

Richard Nixon declared before a television audience, “I’m not a crook,” on November 17, 1973.

President Richard M. Nixon flew into Robins Air Force Base for Carl Vinson’s 90th birthday on November 18, 1973; on the trip he announced the next American nuclear supercarrier would be named USS Carl Vinson.

On November 18, 1989, Pennsylvania Governor Bob Casey signed the Abortion Control Act, the first abortion restrictions enacted after Roe v. Wade.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

Legislative Affairs

The Georgia State House convenes today at 11 AM for Day Four of the Special Session.Continue Reading..

15
Nov

Adoptable (Official) Georgia Dogs for November 15, 2018

Villa Macon

Villa is a female Labrador Retrieve mix puppy who is available for adoption from All About Animals Rescue in Macon, GA.

Villa is a 7 month old female. She is gorgeous, sweet, timid, quiet girl. She needs an owner that has patience for her to warm up to them. She is such a beauty, gentle, quiet and sweet. She’s already lived 3 months of her short life in a foster home. Please don’t miss out on her wonderful puppy years.

Zoe Macon

Zoe is a year-old female Labrador Retriever mix who is available for adoption from All About Animals Rescue in Macon, GA.

Zoe is a 1 year old female. She is THE BEST! It kills me to see a dog with such personality, energy, beauty, love, affection to be stuck in an outside kennel every day. The name Zoe means life and I’m telling you this girl is life! She’s always happy, has amazing energy, will be calm when she needs to, adorable, good size. She is all around precious. I can’t say enough good things about this girl. Please provide her with a loving home. I don’t want her to grow up living at a rescue. someone needs to get her today to enjoy the amazing personality that she is.

Kemper Macon

Kemper is a male Labrador Retriever & American Bulldog mix who is available for adoption from All About Animals Rescue in Macon, GA.

Kemper is a 2 year old male. He is well behaved, very friendly, loves other dogs. He is currently in a foster home and is doing very well. He is a good looking fella too.

15
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Election for November 15, 2018

James Oglethorpe left London on November 15, 1732 headed to a Thames River port named Gravesend, where he would board the ship Anne and lead the first colonists to Georgia.

On November 15, 1777, the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union were adopted in York, Pennsylvania.

Congress was a single house, with each state having one vote, and a president elected to chair the assembly. Although Congress did not have the right to levy taxes, it did have authority over foreign affairs and could regulate a national army and declare war and peace. Amendments to the Articles required approval from all 13 states. On March 2, 1781, following final ratification by the 13th state, the Articles of Confederation became the law of the land.

Edward Langworthy of Savannah, Edward Telfair, and John Walton signed the Articles of Confederation for Georgia.

Stephen Heard Conan OBrien

On November 15, 1815, Patriot leader Stephen Heard died in Elbert County, GA. Heard served on Georgia’s Executive Council during part of the American Revolution and as its President from 1780 to 1781. He later served in the Georgia House of Representatives, as a judge in Elbert County, and as a delegate to Georgia’s 1975 Constitutional Convention. The above portrait of Conan O’Brien Stephen Heard hangs in the basement (pied a terre) level of the Georgia Governor’s Mansion.

On November 15, 1864, General William Tecumseh Sherman’s army left Atlanta on its March to the Sea.

On November 15, the army began to move, burning the industrial section of Atlanta before leaving. One witness reported “immense and raging fires lighting up whole heavens… huge waves of fire roll up into the sky; presently the skeleton of great warehouses stand out in relief against sheets of roaring, blazing, furious flames.” Sherman’s famous destruction of Georgia had begun.

On November 15, 1977, President Jimmy Carter hosted the Shah of Iran in Washington, where they spent two days discussing U.S-Iranian relations.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Election

Congressman-elect Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) wrote an op-ed in the Washington Times that I encourage you to read in its entirety.Continue Reading..

14
Nov

Adoptable (Official) Georgia Dogs for November 14, 2018

Kandy Calhoun

Kandy is a young female Beagle mix puppy who is available for adoption from the Animal Rescue League of Northwest Georgia in Calhoun, GA.

Novale Calhoun

Novale is a young male Beagle mix puppy who is available for adoption from the Animal Rescue League of Northwest Georgia in Calhoun, GA.

Tuffy Calhoun

Tuffy is a young male Australian Shepherd & Border Collie mix puppy who is available for adoption from the Animal Rescue League of Northwest Georgia in Calhoun, GA.

14
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 14, 2018

General Sherman’s army prepared for the March to the Sea on November 14, 1864.

On November 14, 1944, the Constitutional Convention working on a revised document for Georgia reversed its position on home rule that had been adopted the previous day on the motion of Governor Ellis Arnall.

Three astronauts with connections to Georgia – Eric Boe, Robert Kimbrough, and Sandra Magnus – were aboard the space shuttle Endeavor when it lifted off on November 14, 2008.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

State Representative John Meadows (R-Calhoun), Chair of the House Rules Committee has died after fighting cancer, according to News Channel 9.

“My dear friend John was a great man – brave Marine, loving father and adoring grandfather,” said Speaker Ralston. “He loved his family with total devotion. His public service, both as a Marine and a State Representative, was grounded in trying to ensure his children and grandchildren saw a better tomorrow.”

“John was outwardly fierce and courageous but he was, at the same time, one of the kindest and most generous souls you have ever met. There aren’t words to describe the magnitude of this loss for our House of Representatives or the State of Georgia, and my heart is simply broken under the weight of this sad news.

“My heart goes out to John’s family – particularly his beloved wife Marie, his children B.J. and Missy, and his grandsons Will, Patrick, and Max.”

Rep. Meadows was elected to the Georgia House of Representatives in November, 2004 and represented the residents of Murray and Gordon Counties. In addition to chairing the Rules Committee, he also served on the Governmental Affairs, Industry and Labor, Insurance, Retirement, and Game, Fish, & Parks Committees.

Governor Nathan Deal unveiled his proposed legislation for South Georgia relief after Hurricane Michael, according to the AJC.

Gov. Nathan Deal proposed $200 million worth of income tax credits Tuesday for landowners in southwest Georgia as incentive for them to replant trees destroyed last month by Hurricane Michael.

The tax break was part of Deal’s package introduced as state lawmakers convened a special session designed to help fund the cleanup and rebuilding of southwest Georgia after the storm.

The tax break would aid both timber and pecan farmers who saw their trees destroyed by the storm.

The tax credits would be available to landowners in 28 counties hardest hit by the storm. Deal’s chief of staff, Chris Riley, called the $200 million “a drop in the bucket to what was lost.”

Deal also proposed about $270 million in other spending, much of it going to debris cleanup. The state will pay part of local government costs, including overtime for staffers who worked long hours during and after the storm.

From the AJC:

State Sen. Renee Unterman, R-Buford, shared her love of the chairman.

He was “a person who cared very much for those that are disadva`ten champions legislation to protect children and senior citizens. “He also cared about the vulnerable population, whether it was young or old.”

Meadows stuck by his friends and left no doubt what he stood for, House Ways and Means Chairman Jay Powell said.

“He’d tell you exactly what he thought. You might not like it, but he was not going to sugarcoat it,” said Powell, a Republican from Camilla. “You didn’t really like it at the time, but in the long run it was the best thing for you to know where you stood and what he thought.”

Today, the State House will convene for Day Two of the 2018 Special Session, beginning at 10 AM.Continue Reading..

13
Nov

Adoptable (Official) Georgia Dogs for November 13, 2018

Ali Athens

Ali is a female Labrador Retriever & Siberian Husky mix puppy who is available for adoption from Athens Canine Rescue in Athens, GA.

Milledge Athens

Milledge is a young female American Bulldog and Beafle mix who is available for adoption from Athens Canine Rescue in Athens, GA.

Junie Athens

Junie is a female Beagle & Coonhound mix who is available for adoption from Athens Canine Rescue in Athens, GA.

13
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 13, 2018

President George Washington returned to the City of Washington on November 13, 1789, ending the first Presidential tour.

On the same day, Benjamin Franklin wrote a letter to his friend Jean-Baptiste LeRoy, in which he said,

“Our new Constitution is now established, and has an appearance that promises permanency; but in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”

On November 13, 1865, the United States government issued the first Gold Certificates.

The Georgia General Assembly adopted a resolution against ratifying the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution on November 13, 1866.

In deciding not to ratify the 14th Amendment, the General Assembly adopted a committee report explaining that: “1. If Georgia is not a State composing part of the Federal Government known as the Government of the United States, amendments to the Constitution of the United States are not properly before this body. 2. If Georgia is a State composing part of the Federal Government … , these these amendments are not proposed according to the requirements of the Federal Constitution, and are proposed in such a manner as to forbid the legislature from discussing the merits of the amendments without an implied surrender of the rights of the State.”

Excavation began for a new Georgia State Capitol in Atlanta on the site of the former City Hall/Fulton County Courthouse on November 13, 1884.

Walt Disney released “Fantasia” on November 13, 1940.

Georgia Governor and Constitutional Commission Chair Ellis Arnall moved that a home rule provision be included in the new draft of the state Constitution and his motion passed 8-7 on November 13, 1944.

On November 13, 1956, the United States Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling that struck down a law requiring segregation on buses in Montgomery, Alabama.

Ronald Reagan announced his campaign for the Republican nomination for President of the United States on November 13, 1979.

“The people have not created this disaster in our economy; the federal government has. It has overspent, overestimated, and over regulated. It has failed to deliver services within the revenues it should be allowed to raise from taxes. In the thirty-four years since the end of World War II, it has spent 448 billion dollars more than it has collection in taxes – 448 billion dollars of printing press money, which has made every dollar you earn worth less and less. At the same time, the federal government has cynically told us that high taxes on business will in some way “solve” the problem and allow the average taxpayer to pay less. Well, business is not a taxpayer it is a tax collector. Business has to pass its tax burden on to the customer as part of the cost of doing business. You and I pay the taxes imposed on business every time we go to the store. Only people pay taxes and it is political demagoguery or economic illiteracy to try and tell us otherwise.”

“The key to restoring the health of the economy lies in cutting taxes. At the same time, we need to get the waste out of federal spending. This does not mean sacrificing essential services, nor do we need to destroy the system of benefits which flow to the poor, the elderly, the sick and the handicapped. We have long since committed ourselves, as a people, to help those among us who cannot take care of themselves. But the federal government has proven to be the costliest and most inefficient provider of such help we could possibly have.”

“I believe this nation hungers for a spiritual revival; hungers to once again see honor placed above political expediency; to see government once again the protector of our liberties, not the distributor of gifts and privilege. Government should uphold and not undermine those institutions which are custodians of the very values upon which civilization is founded—religion, education and, above all, family. Government cannot be clergyman, teacher and parent. It is our servant, beholden to us.”

“We who are privileged to be Americans have had a rendezvous with destiny since the moment in 1630 when John Winthrop, standing on the deck of the tiny Arbella off the coast of Massachusetts, told the little band of pilgrims, “We shall be as a city upon a hill. The eyes of all people are upon us so that if we shall deal falsely with our God in this work we have undertaken and so cause Him to withdraw His present help from us, we shall be made a story and a byword throughout the world.”

The Vietnam Veterans Memorial was dedicated on November 13, 1982 in Washington, DC.

On November 13, 2006, groundbreaking began for a memorial to Martin Luther King, Jr. on the National Mall in Washington, DC.

Three astronauts with connections to Georgia – Eric Boe, Robert Kimbrough, and Sandra Magnus – were aboard the space shuttle Endeavor when it lifted off on November 14, 2008.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

The State House of Representatives convenes in Special Session today at 1:30 PM. I believe the Senate will convene earlier, but have not heard formally.

United States District Court Judge Amy Totenberg has ordered a delay in the deadline for counties to certify election results, according to the AJC.

A federal judge on Monday ordered election officials to review thousands of provisional ballots that haven’t been counted in Georgia’s close election for governor.

U.S. District Judge Amy Totenberg’s order calls for a hotline for voters to check if their provisional ballots were counted, a review of voter registrations, and updated reports from the state government about why many voters were required to use provisional ballots.

Totenberg said she’s providing “limited, modest” relief to help protect voters. The order preserves Tuesday’s deadline for county election offices to certify results and the Nov. 20 deadline for Secretary of State Robyn Crittenden to certify the election. The ruling enjoins Crittenden from certifying the election before Friday at 5 p.m.

Her ruling applies to provisional ballots, which were issued to as many as 27,000 Georgia voters because their registration or identification couldn’t be verified. Provisional ballots are usually only counted if voters prove their eligibility within three days of the election, a deadline that passed Friday.

The decision doesn’t say whether additional provisional ballots could be counted after election results are certified at the county level Tuesday.

From AccessWDUN:

And, for counties with 100 or more provisional ballots, she ordered the secretary of state’s office to review, or have county election officials review, the eligibility of voters who had to cast a provisional ballot because of registration issues.

Totenberg also ruled that Georgia must not certify the election results before Friday at 5 p.m., which falls before the Nov. 20 deadline set by state law.

Secretary of State Robyn Crittenden earlier provided guidance to local boards of elections in dealing with some provisional ballots, according to the AJC.

Georgia Secretary of State Robyn Crittenden instructed county election officials Monday to count absentee ballots even if they lack a voter’s date of birth, as long as the voter’s identity can be verified.

Crittenden issued the guidance for county election officials as they face a Tuesday deadline to certify the results of the Nov. 6 election.

Crittenden’s instructions could affect vote-counting in Gwinnett County, where election officials rejected 1,587 mailed absentee ballots. Gwinnett has the largest number of potential uncounted absentee ballots for Abrams in the state.

Many absentee ballots were rejected in Gwinnett because voters filled out incorrect direct dates of birth or provided insufficient information on the return envelope.

“What is required is the signature of the voter and any additional information needed for the county election official to verify the identity of the voter,” Crittenden wrote. “Therefore, an election official does not violate [state law] when they accept an absentee ballot despite the omission of a day and month of birth … if the election official can verify the identity of the voter.”

The Macon Telegraph looks at the polarization of Georgia’s electorate between rural, suburban, and urban counties.

Analysis of this year’s gubernatorial election results reveals a growing division between rural and suburban counties and a surprising decrease in Democratic votes outside of metropolitan Atlanta compared to recent presidential elections.

For her part, Abrams received more votes in Georgia than any Democratic candidate at any level and has come closer to winning the governorship than any Democrat since Roy Barnes won in 1996.

The remarkable turnout for both candidates, aided by the state’s population growth, reflects the increasing nationalization of state politics. The days of Blue Dog Democrats, liberal Republicans and widespread ticket splitting are dwindling, if not gone.

The margins between Republican and Democratic candidates have diverged over the past few elections, showing an increasingly divided state. The average margin for Kemp across all rural counties was 38 percent, which improved upon Trump’s rural margin of 36 percent and Romney’s of 29 percent. The margin for Abrams across all suburban counties was 17 percent, which improved up Clinton’s 11 percent suburban margin and Obama’s 5 percent.

That growing divide is well distributed across the suburban and rural counties. Compared with 2016, Kemp increased Republican margins in 116 of the 139 rural counties he carried, while Abrams increased Democratic margins in all of the suburban counties, including the five she did not carry.

Columbus Mayor Teresa Tomlinson will join the Hall Booth Smith law firm after she leaves office, according to the Ledger-Enquirer.

Columbus Mayor Teresa Tomlinson plans to private law practice again when her second term ends early next year. But she said the move will not impact future political considerations.

Hall Booth Smith, P.C., which has six offices across the South, announced Tuesday morning that Tomlinson, 53, will join its firm as a partner specializing in complex litigation, crisis management and strategic solutions. She will work out of

Though the mayor of Columbus is elected in a non-partisan election, Tomlinson has worked hard for a number of Democratic candidates in the recent election cycle, including gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams. Tomlinson, 53 and an Atlanta native, has been exploring a possible run for U.S. Senate in 2020 against Republican incumbent David Perdue.

“I chose to join Hall Booth Smith because they have a deep commitment to public service,” Tomlinson said. “The firm is supportive of my pursuing future public service should that opportunity present itself.”

The leadership at Hall Booth understands her interest in another political office and has been supportive during the employment talks, she said. Hall Booth Smith Chairman and co-founder John Hall said the growing firm, which now has more than 200 attorneys, is personality-driven and Tomlinson is a perfect fit.

 Floyd County has certified its election results, according to the Rome News-Tribune.

Floyd County Elections Board Chair Steve Miller said Monday there were 173 provisional ballots cast in the Nov. 6 general election, compared to 16 during the May primaries. Clerks spent the week reviewing the voters’ eligibility and, in the end, 116 of them passed muster.

Miller said a few provisional voters never returned with their required identification, and some weren’t registered by the Oct. 9 deadline to vote in this election. Most of the 57 rejected ballots, however, were from voters registered in another county.

12
Nov

Adoptable (Official) Georgia Dogs for November 12, 2018

Gwinnett County Animal Shelter is offering no adoption fees for dogs and cats 7 years or older during the month of November.

“Senior dogs can be more social, calm and easier to integrate into the family,” said Animal Welfare and Enforcement Director Alan Davis. “They’re already trained, aren’t going through a chewing phase and love unconditionally. They don’t ask for much; just a warm place to sleep, good meals and plenty of love.”

All pet adoptions are free on Fridays.

In addition, Gwinnett Animal Welfare invites residents to visit the Gwinnett Animal Shelter on Saturday, November 24 to participate in name your price adoptions during the Adopt ’til You Drop event. They can  adopt a shelter pet of any age at a fee of their choice. Adoption fees are regularly $45 for dogs and $30 for cats.

Precious Gwinnett

Precious is a 15 year old female Hound and Labrador Retriever mix who is available for adoption from the Gwinnett County Animal Shelter in Lawrenceville, GA.

Gravy Gwinnett

Gravy is an 8-year old female Border Collie mix who is available for adoption from the Gwinnett County Animal Shelter in Lawrenceville, GA.

Goliath Gwinnett

Goliath is a 7-year old male Australian Cattledog mix who is available for adoption from the Gwinnett County Animal Shelter in Lawrenceville, GA.

12
Nov

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections for November 12, 2018

General William Tecumseh Sherman ordered the destruction of railroad and telegraph lines between Atlanta and Northwest Georgia on November 12, 1864. Sherman also burned the railroad bridge over the Chattahoochee, cutting his own supply line from Chattanooga.

In what looks to me like a surprisingly progressive move for the 19th century, Governor John B. Gordon signed legislation on November 12, 1889 opening the University of Georgia to white women.

On November 12, 1918, Atlanta held a victory parade to celebrate the Armistice with Germany.

On November 12, 1944, the Atlanta Constitution released a poll of Georgia legislators indicating that most wanted more local rule for cities and counties in the new Constitution being drafted.

President Jimmy Carter ordered an end to oil imports from Iran on November 12, 1979.

Tim Berners-Lee published a Proposal for a HyperText Project, laying the foundation for the World Wide Web, on November 12, 1990.

HyperText is a way to link and access information of various kinds as a web of nodes in which the user can browse at will. Potentially, HyperText provides a single user-interface to many large classes of stored information such as reports, notes, data-bases, computer documentation and on-line systems help.

A program which provides access to the hypertext world we call a browser. A hypertext page has pieces of text which refer to other texts. Such references are highlighted and can be selected with a mouse. When you select a reference, the browser presents you with the text which is referenced.

The texts are linked together in a way that one can go from one concept to another to find the information one wants. The network of links is called a web.

Georgia Politics, Campaigns, and Elections

The Ledger-Enquirer writes about runoff elections on the statewide ballot.

▪ Republican Brad Raffensberger and Democrat John Barrow will face off for the Secretary of State office Brian Kemp just vacated.

▪ Incumbent Republican Chuck Eaton and Democrat Lindy Miller will vie for the 3rd District Public Service Commission seat.

Early voting starts Nov. 26 – the Monday after a four-day Thanksgiving weekend, for some people – and it lasts just five days, from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. through Nov. 30 in the City Services Center, 3111 Citizens Way, off Macon Road by the Columbus Public Library.

“That’s if everything goes as planned,” cautioned Nancy Boren, executive director of the Muscogee County Board of Elections and Registrations.

Tuesday’s vote still has to be certified, to document the tallies needed for runoffs. Legal maneuvers in the governor’s race could affect that.

Only people who were eligible to vote in the General Election may vote in the runoff, but they do not have to have voted, they just have to have been registered to.

Governor Deal on Friday issued the call for a Special Session of the Georgia General Assembly.

Gov. Nathan Deal today issued the call to convene a special legislative session of the Georgia General Assembly, to begin on Tuesday, Nov. 13.

“Many of Georgia’s communities were severely impacted by Hurricane Michael as families, businesses and farmers sustained significant financial losses,” said Deal. “In response, I have asked the General Assembly to reconvene and take immediate action to provide relief funding and spur economic recovery for the affected areas. Our state appropriations need to be amended to minimize financial losses following the storm and to ensure Georgia’s continued prosperity in the coming months. I look forward to working with the General Assembly and the leadership of both chambers to provide much-needed support for those affected by Hurricane Michael.”

The special session will be convened for the limited purposes of providing emergency funding to state agencies and local governments following Hurricane Michael and ratifying Deal’s executive order dated July 30, 2018. The special session will also include providing for general law regarding taxation related to recovery and rebuilding from the impact of Hurricane Michael and taxation related to the subjects of that executive order.

The regular session of the 2018 General Assembly adjourned sine die on March 29, 2018. Article V, Section II, Paragraph VII of the Constitution of the State of Georgia grants the governor the power to convene a special session of the General Assembly by proclamation.

The call for the special legislative session is available below or viewable here.

From the Newnan Times-Herald:

Under state law, when the legislature is called into special session, only those issues specially included in the “call” can be taken up.

“South Georgia desperately needs relief from the major hurricane that destroyed houses, businesses and large sections of our agricultural community,” State Rep. David Stover, R-Palmetto, said after the initial announcement. “I expect the session will relieve much of the financial pressure that the people of our state in the affected areas are currently facing.”

“I applaud Governor Deal’s call for a special session to address the devastation in South Georgia,” said State Rep. Josh Bonner, R-Peachtree City. “The impact on the communities hit by Hurricane Michael is not only felt by Georgia, but resonates across our country. As elected officials, we owe it to our citizens to do whatever possible to help recover, rebuild and re-establish normalcy as soon as possible.”

The session is expected to last five days. State Rep. Lynn Smith, R-Newnan, said she has heard that the legislature might meet next Saturday for the final day, instead of taking the weekend off and finishing up the session the Monday before Thanksgiving.

The amendment to the budget will have to go through the same process as any other bill in the legislature. It will be “dropped” and first read, then taken up by the House Appropriations Committee and the House Rules Committee, then go to the House floor. After passage by the House, it will head over to the Senate for the same process.

Democrat Stacey Abrams has filed a lawsuit in federal court seeking to delay the certification of votes in last Tuesday’s election, according to the Augusta Chronicle.

If successful, the suit would prevent officials from certifying county vote totals until Wednesday and could restore at least 1,095 votes that weren’t counted. The campaign said thousands more ballots could be affected.

Abrams’ campaign manager, Lauren Groh-Wargo, said the state’s numbers can’t be trusted and that 5,000 votes came in Saturday that previously were unknown.

“This race is not over,” she said on a conference call with reporters. “It’s still too close to call.”

Abrams campaign leaders said she needs to get the margin down to about 22,000 votes to force a runoff, and they sent a fundraising email to supporters Sunday saying at least 30,823 votes remain to be counted.

The Kemp campaign contends far fewer votes remain, less than 18,000, and that Abrams mathematically can’t force a runoff.

Each of Georgia’s 159 counties must certify final returns by Tuesday, and many have done so already. The state must certify a statewide result by Nov. 20.

Democrat Carolyn Bourdeaux has also filed suit in federal court, seeking to delay certification of vote totals, according to the AJC.

The 7th District candidate effectively joined in on a lawsuit filed by a handful of voting and civil rights groups during the early voting period that preceded Election Day. Those groups sued Gwinnett County and then-Secretary of State Brian Kemp, homing in on Gwinnett’s disproportionately high reporting of signature-related absentee ballot rejections.

Bourdeaux argued that the county’s rejection of those ballots violates federal law since those voters were already previously determined to be eligible to vote. She said the county should accept and count those ballots.

“We are taking this legal action to ensure that every eligible vote is counted in this election. We will not stop fighting until that goal is accomplished,” Bourdeaux spokesman Jake Best said in a statement.

The suit is seeking to block Gwinnett from certifying its election results as initially planned on Tuesday afternoon in order to give the county time to count the absentee ballots.

A hair separates Bourdeaux from incumbent Republican Rob Woodall in the 7th Congressional District, which also includes major swaths of Forsyth County. Woodall leads by roughly 900 votes, putting the race within recount territory, but Bourdeaux’s campaign is mining for as many votes as possible in the meantime.

The Gwinnett County Board of Elections met privately to discuss litigation, according to the AJC.

A handful of voting and civil rights groups sued Gwinnett County and then-Secretary of State Brian Kemp during the early voting period that preceded Election Day, homing in on Gwinnett’s disproportionately high reporting of signature-related absentee ballot rejections. A judge ultimately issued an injunction ordering Gwinnett — and every other county in Georgia — to allow voters rejected on such basis new opportunities to have their ballots counted.

The American Civil Liberties Union issued a new press release Thursday afternoon, taking issue with Gwinnett’s rejection of absentee ballots on the basis of missing birth date information.

Darryl Joachim was one voter rejected due to such an issue. At the elections office Friday, he said he cast an absentee ballot but was rejected because he did not include his date of birth on the ballot envelope.

“There are definitely different political points of view” on the elections board, which is made up of two Democrats, two Republicans and an independent, Day said. “But we do agree that our staff has acted in the way that the law stated they should act.”

County officials have said there are somewhere between 2,400 and 2,500 provisional ballots — which are issued to voters who had registration questions that must later be resolved — in Gwinnett. But aside from the fact that about 1,500 of the provisionals were believed to have been issued in Georgia’s 7th Congressional District, they have not released further information.

Curt Yeomans of the Gwinnett Daily Post writes about Democratic gains in the suburban county.

[Gwinnett County Democratic Party Chair Gabe] Okoye and other speakers said Gwinnett County was no longer the Republican stronghold it had once been.

“They may have a Trump in the White House, but we trumped them here in Gwinnett County,” Okoye told the applauding crowd.

Democratic candidates defeated longtime Republican Solicitor General Rosanna Szabo, beat two incumbent Republican county commissioners and took one school board seat, with another school board race still too close to call.

Democratic candidates for statewide offices won the county, as well. Carolyn Bourdeaux is neck and neck with incumbent Rep. Rob Woodall, R-Ga., in a 7th Congressional District race that remains too close to call with provision ballots left to be factored in.

The party also flipped seven seats in the Gwinnett legislative delegation — five in the Georgia House of Representatives and two in the state Senate. That means Democrats will make up the majority in the 25-seat delegation by a margin of 17-8 in January.

“It is simply a hard fact that Gwinnett is blue, period,” said state Rep. Brenda Lopez, D-Norcross.

Leslie Jarchow has been elected to the Flowery Branch City Council, according to the Gainesville Times.

She is set to be sworn in to the Post 3 seat at the council’s meeting on Thursday, Nov. 15, after defeating Christine Worl in the Nov. 6 special election. She fills a seat held by [Fred] Richards, who died June 14.

“My No. 1 priority is to establish open lines of communication. I was really surprised to find that a lot of people felt like they weren’t getting heard. I genuinely want to hear all the different voices, and I’m going to do my due diligence and research on any issue that arises.”

Savannah City Council is considering spending $2.8 million dollars to renovate City Hall, according to the Savannah Morning News.

During the 112 years the gold-domed building fronting the Savannah River at Bull Street has served as the Savannah’s government center there has never been any interior restoration of city hall, and the signs of neglect, deferred maintenance and inappropriate alterations are evident, said Luciana Spracher, Savannah’s Research Library and Municipal Archives director.

“Previously we have considered city hall just a government building, but we really now realize it straddles the world of being a building for our modern city government and being a museum quality building,” Spracher said. “We need to start treating it that way.”

In total, nine quotes from contractors were obtained to address 48 items found to be in need of restoration at an estimated cost of almost $2.8 million.

“When they built this building, city council said they were building a building for a century to come,” Spracher said. “We have passed that point. We kind of need to figure out how to get through the next century.”