Opening Day of 2019-20 Session
On Monday, January 14, 2019, the second Monday of the new year, the Georgia General Assembly – the House of Representatives and the Senate - convened for the first day of the 155th Legislative Session of the Georgia General Assembly.
Since Monday marked the first day of the new 2019-2020 term, every member of the Georgia House of Representatives took the oath of office and was formally sworn in. As I hope you have learned about me over the past four years of legislative service, and prior to my entering the legislature, I take this oath and my commitment to serve honorably and honestly seriously. Thank you again for trusting me to represent your interests at the state level for another two-year term.
As I have explained in previous newsletters, the first week of the opening of Georgia General Assembly is dominated by procedural and ceremonial activities as the session officially convenes.Read more
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Contact: Betsy Theroux
Tuesday, January 22, 2019
Rep. Jeff Jones Appointed to Deputy Whip Team for the 2019-2020 Legislative Term
ATLANTA – State Representative Jeff Jones (R-Brunswick) was recently appointed to serve as a member of the House Majority Caucus Deputy Whip team. Rep. Jones was appointed to serve on the Whip Team by House Majority Whip Trey Kelley (R-Cedartown), and his appointment is for a two-year term concurrent with his service as a member of the Georgia House of Representatives.
“I look forward to working with this team of fellow republicans to advance great ideas and move important legislation across the finish line,” said Rep. Jones.Read more
Two Georgia Power plants, Wansley and Yates, sit along the banks of Chattahoochee River. (© Craig Tanner)
Atlanta, GA—At least 10 of Georgia Power’s toxic, unlined coal ash ponds sit dangerously close to the groundwater beneath them, according to the utility’s recent filings required under the federal Coal Combustion Residuals rule.
According to the utility’s disclosures for 10 of its 29 coal ash ponds statewide, all 10 ponds fail to comply with the location restriction that requires at least a five-foot buffer between the bottom of a coal ash pond and the underlying groundwater aquifer. In at least some cases, the coal ash ponds appear to be sitting in groundwater.
“Georgia Power’s coal ash ponds were built in the worst places possible – near streams, lakes, floodplains, next to rivers, and right above groundwater, and we now know that at least 10 of its ponds sit too close to the groundwater aquifer,” said SELC Senior Attorney Chris Bowers. “Where Georgia Power plans to just cap many of its unlined coal ash ponds in place, the utility’s own disclosures show the danger this ill-advised strategy poses to Georgia communities.”
by State Rep. Jeff Jones | Dec 6, 2018
For those who are not yet aware, Georgia issues driver’s licenses to non-citizens who, according to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), do not have legal immigration status.
To increase the “head-scratcher” quotient on this, there is no difference - none - between the driver/ID credentials issued to these lucky illegal aliens and those issued to legal immigrants (green card holders) or foreign students and guest workers who obeyed American law and are here on legal, temporary visas.
While it is illegal for non-citizens to vote in elections in Georgia, state law considers the driver’s licenses and ID Cards we are granting to them to be “proper ID” at our polls.
That’s why I will soon introduce driver’s license/ID reform legislation to change this bizarre situation.Read more
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Pictured: 12.06 Rep. Jeff Jones presents Dr. Arthur L. Cyphers, Senior Pastor of Norwich Baptist Church, the Georgia House of Representatives proclamation in recognition of the church's 100-year anniversary of serving Brunswick and Glynn County communities.
"On behalf of greater Brunswick and Glynn County, Thank you Norwich Baptist Church and congratulations on one-hundred years of service to our community..." ~Rep. Jeff Jones
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Photo Courtesy: NASA - NASA images show the polution impact Florence had on coast.
2019-2020 Legislative Agenda; February 22, 2019
NOTE: This page will be updated as 2019-20 bill numbers are assigned. BOLD items are links to bills.
- Coal Ash Pond Dewatering; require public notice prior to dewatering; 2019’s bill – HB93 and HB94. In 2018, voted out of House 169-3; passed out of Senate NR&E committee; Senate never brought bill for vote.
- Coal Ash Solid Waste Landfill storage - minimum siting standards and prior public notice for new MSW coal ash storage; 2019’s bill –
- By law, for non-citizens, change the design of GA Drivers Licenses these individuals are currently receiving from the Georgia Department of Driver Services. 2019’s bill – HB270 and HB400. There a two bills required to achieve this. GA DDS records, approx. 24,000 such licenses have been issued in GA; following Federal REAL ID ACT guidelines, propose issuing these individual a uniquely designed, vertically oriented driver’s license that will not be valid for Federal ID purposes.
- Out of State Cash Wire Transfer Fees - collect a refundable fee for out-of-state cash wire transfers targeting drug dealers, gamblers, human traffickers and others who hide cash; $100 million annual projected net revenue, with no cost to Georgia taxpayers; 2018’s bill – HB66.
- Georgia’s Open Meeting Act - define that “final” meeting agenda must be publicly posted one full week prior to the meeting; establishes provisions for adding additional last-minute agenda items; 2018’s bill – HB1040.
- Teacher Out-of-Pocket School Supplies Tax Credit– change current tax deduction of $250 to a tax credit of $250; estimated impact of $25 million to Georgia budget; 2017’s bill – HB13
- GA Oyster Mariculture - 2019’s bill – HB450 to promote growth of the commercial oyster mariculture industry (production, harvesting and distribution) emphasizing the safe delivery of oysters to consumers; currently, commercially sold oysters must be wild grown & harvested; change code/regulations/rules to allow farm grown oyster mariculture and to allow out-of-state importation of oyster seed; DNR Commissioner Mark Williams & Department of Ag Commissioner Gary Black, the UGA Marine Extension Service (MAREX) plus mariculture producers, seafood distributors and restaurants, and the environmental community, all fully support the initiative; legislation is currently being drafted.
- State Owned Property in McIntosh & Long Counties; the large amount of acreage off tax roles adversely affects County and School District funding and results in significant loss of tax revenue; working to increase DNR budget to replace county’s lost revenue to replace lost local property tax revenue; working to redefine the “Equalization” formula which is used to rank GA counties by wealth and is used in state/federal school funding calculations.
- Hwy 84 Road Naming for Ludowici Police Chief Frank McClelland
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Monday, September 17, 2018
Contact: Betsy Theroux
Rep. Jeff Jones to Reintroduce Legislation to Protect State’s Water Supply, Issues Statement on Collapse of Coal Ash Landfill
ATLANTA – State Representative Jeff Jones (R-Brunswick) today announced that he will reintroduce legislation in the 2019 legislative session of the Georgia General Assembly that will focus on protecting the state’s water supplies from heavy metal toxicity that exists in coal ash.Read more