The Breakdown
An update from the gold dome.
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The Georgia General Assembly completed its 40 day legislative session late in the evening this week on March 31/Sine Die. The Cobb Chamber took positions and stayed engaged in the following legislation that advance our economy and continue enhancing our state as the top place for business. Thank you to our Cobb Delegation and legislators across the state for their support in many of these key areas.

Budget Update

On March 31/Sine Die, the House and Senate Conference Committees both reported and adopted HB 81: State Fiscal Year Budget July 1, 2021 - June 30, 2022. Also on Sine Die, both the House and Senate voted to adopt this budget with significant support from our Cobb Delegation and across the state. Click here to view the full FY 2022 Bill Conference Committee Substitute (HB 81) which includes increased funding for higher education and transportation.

Legislation Finalization

Legislation that the Cobb Chamber supported and engaged in and that passed both chambers by Sine Die include the following listed below:

Senate Bill 6: Tax Credit Return on Investment Act/Georgia Economic Renewal Act/Georgia Economic Recovery Act

  • Summary: This bill substitute on March 31/Sine Die combined the House Bill 587 Georgia Economic Renewal Act, House Bill 587 Georgia Economic Recovery Act, the Tax Credit Return on Investment Act, and the high-impact aerospace defense projects for creating new jobs and investments in the state. Part I of this Act is the "Tax Credit Return on Investment Act of 2021." Parts II through IV of this Act are the "Georgia Economic Renewal Act of 2021." Part V of this Act is the "Georgia Economic Recovery Act of 2021." Click here for the final bill version.
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: On March 29, a Senate and House Conference Committee were appointed. On March 31/Sine Die, both the House and Senate Conference Committees reported the adopted bill substitute and both the House and Senate voted to adopt with significant support from the Cobb Delegation and across our state. This is headed to Governor Kemp’s desk to sign.

House Bill 265: Tax Revision for Payroll Protection Program

  • Summary: Revises the terms "Internal Revenue Code" and "Internal Revenue Code of 1986" and thereby incorporates certain provisions of the federal law into Georgia law. This legislation is important for businesses that received or are receiving PPP (Payroll Protection Program) funding to make it not taxable.
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Both the House and Senate passed/adopted with unanimous support and we thank our Cobb Delegation and all legislators across the state for their support. Governor Kemp has signed this into law.

House Bill 112: COVID Liability Protection Extension

  • Summary: Extends the immunity for COVID liability for businesses for an additional year through July 14, 2022.
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Following the House passing/adopting this bill on February 9, the Senate Judiciary Committee reported favorably and the Senate passed/adopted on March 17. It is headed to Governor Kemp’s desk to sign. Thank you to bill sponsors including Cobb’s Representative Sharon Cooper.

House Bill 588: Georgia Freight & Logistics Program

  • Summary: This bill takes recommendations from the Georgia Freight & Logistics Commission and enables the Georgia Department of Transportation to make investments in private freight and logistics infrastructure for projects that provide public benefit including enhanced public safety, enhanced mobility of people or goods, congestion mitigation, and enhanced trade and economic development. 
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Following the House passing/adopting on March 3 with unanimous support, it was referred to the Senate Finance Committee which reported favorably by substitute bill on March 25. On March 31/Sine Die, the Senate passed/adopted by substitute and the House then agreed to the Senate amendment/substitute. It is now headed to Governor Kemp’s desk to sign.

Senate Resolution 102: Georgia Commission on E-Commerce and Freight Infrastructure

  • Summary: Creates the Georgia Commission on E-Commerce and Freight Infrastructure Funding.
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Following the Senate passing/adopting unanimously on March 8/Crossover Day, it was referred to the House Transportation Committee which reported favorably by substitute bill on March 25. On March 29, the House adopted by substitute bill and on March 31/Sine Die, the Senate agreed to the amendment/substitute bill. It is now headed to Governor Kemp’s desk to sign.

Senate Bill 27: Military Workforce Certifications

  • Summary: Extends the time a member of the military has to qualify for the issuance of a license or certification as an electrical contractor, plumber, conditioned air contractor, low-voltage contractor, or utility contractor using his or her military specialty or certification
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Following the Senate unanimously passing/adopting SB 27 on February 16, it was referred to the House Regulated Industries which reported favorably on March 17. On March 31/Sine Die, the House passed adopted unanimously. It is now headed to Governor Kemp’s desk to sign. Thank you to the SB 27 sponsors including Cobb’s Senators Kay Kirkpatrick, Bruce Thompson and Lindsey Tippins.

House Bill 150: Public Utilities

  • Summary: Prohibits governmental entities from adopting any policy that prohibits the connection or reconnection of any utility service based upon the type or source of energy or fuel.
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Following the House passing/adopting on February 22 and the Senate Regulated Industries & Utilities Committee reporting favorably by substitute bill on March 10, the full Senate passed/adopted by substitute bill on March 22 and the House agreed to the amendments on March 29. It is now headed to Governor Kemp’s desk to sign. Thank you to HB 150 sponsors including Cobb’s Representative Don Parsons.  

House Bill 271: Ambulance Services

  • Summary: Authorizes the Department of Community Health to assess one or more provider matching payments on ambulance services for the purpose of obtaining federal financial participation for Medicaid.
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Following the House unanimously passing/adopting on February 26 and the Senate Finance Committee favorably reporting, the Senate unanimously passed on March 22. It is now headed to Governor Kemp’s desk to sign. Thank you to the bill sponsors including Cobb’s Representatives Sharon Cooper and Bert Reeves and support from our Cobb Delegation.

House Bill 327: Organized Retail Crime Prevention Act

  • Summary: To prevent organized retail crime; to provide for certain record-keeping and reporting requirements for the sale and purchase of stored value cards; to provide for certain record-keeping and reporting requirements for the sale of goods by third-party sellers on online marketplaces
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Following the House passing/adopting by substitute bill on March 8/Crossover Day and the Senate Judiciary Committee favorably reporting by substitute bill on March 25, the Senate passed/adopted by substitute bill and the House then agreed to the substitute amendments on March 31/Sine Die. It is now headed to Governor Kemp’s desk to sign. Thank you to HB 327 bill sponsors including Cobb’s Representatives Bert Reeves and Erick Allen.

House Bill 465: Alarm Systems

  • Summary: This bill aims to amend general provisions applicable to counties and municipal corporations, so as to prohibit local governments from imposing civil penalties upon an alarm systems contractor for a false alarm that occurs through no fault of the alarm systems contractor.
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Following the House passing/adopting by substitute bill on March 8/Crossover Day and the Senate Government Oversight Committee reporting favorably by substitute bill, the full Senate passed/adopted on March 25 and the House agreed to the amendments/substitute bill on March 31/Sine with significant support from the Cobb Delegation and across our state. It is now headed to Governor Kemp’s desk to sign.

House Bill 317: Excise Tax on Rooms & Lodging

  • Summary: Relating to excise tax on rooms, lodgings, and accommodations, so as to revise the definition of "innkeeper" to include marketplace facilitators; to define the term "marketplace innkeeper"; to expand the state levy of a nightly excise tax to include all rooms, lodgings, and accommodations.
  • Cobb Chamber Position: SUPPORT
  • Result: Following the House passing/adopting by substitute bill on March 8/Crossover Day and the Senate Finance Committee favorably reporting by substitute bill on March 25, the Senate passed/adopted by substitute bill and the House agreed to the amendments/substitute both on March 31/Sine Die with significant support from the Cobb Delegation and across our state. Thank you to HB 86 sponsors including Cobb’s Representative Matt Dollar and John Carson.


While time ran out for these items below to be voted on and passed by end of Sine Die 2021, these will continue to be 2022 priorities for the Cobb Chamber and have been pre-filed for the 2022 state session:


2021 Cobb Chamber State Legislative Agenda Priorities

The Cobb Chamber’s 2021 State Legislative Agenda represents our commitment to advance a vibrant and thriving economy by enhancing the business climate and quality of life for Cobb County, the region and state. Our agenda addresses the key concerns from our 2,500-member organizations representing more than 16,000 business leaders. Click here to access our full 2021 State Legislative Agenda.

Thank you to our Government Affairs Committee Chairman Andrew Dill of Lockheed, Vice Chairman Trey Paris of Taylor English Decisions, and our entire Government Affairs Committee for your partnership in enhancing our business environment.

 

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