Capitol Update Week 6 - Pill Mills and Real Estate

Representative Brett Harrell reports on passage of legislation in the Georgia House reigning in illegal pill mills and improving real estate laws.

This week at the Georgia House

The House passed several important pieces of legislation this week, most notably dealing with illegal pill mills and improvements to Georgia's real estate laws and professions.

HB 178 the Georgia Pain Management Clinic Act seeks to reign in the proliferation of illegal pill mills. The bill upon becoming law would require, among other provisions, that Pain Management Clinics be owned by a licensed physician.

HB 83 provides that Real Estate Agents assisting buyers and sellers in a short sale are NOT acting as Mortgage Brokers. The Georgia Department of Banking has interpreted such assistance differently than most other states and HB 83 simply clarifies that Real Estate Brokers and Salespeople may provide such assistance without the need to be licensed as a Mortgage Broker.

HB 160 revises provisions to vacant and foreclosed property registries and prohibits fees for future conveyances of property except under limited circumstances.

HB 122 that I co-sponsored with Rep. Kevin Tanner permits the state Sexual Offender Registry Review Board to access and utilize records of the Board of Pardons and Paroles when evaluating the status and making assessments of sexual offenders.

Next Week

The House begins a busy week on Monday with two Ethics bills.

HB 142 relates to the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance (Ethics) Commission and modifies requirements for lobbyists registration and disclosures, regulates lobbyist spending on Legislators, and restores rule-making authority to the Commission.  

HB 143 changes provisions to campaign contributions and disclosure reports revising both local official reporting as well as mandating that contributions to Legislators between January 1 and the first day of the Legislative Session be reported within five days of the beginning of that Session. 

In Committee

HB 159 my Property Protection Bill received a robust and positive first hearing before the Public Finance and Policy Subcommittee of Ways & Means. Americans for Prosperity Georgia interviewed me recently on the proposal (click link below to watch). You may also view the video interview here. AFP's Joel Aaron also wrote about the bill "Hide & Seek In Your Property Taxes.

As always, I remain appreciative that you allow me to serve as your state Representative. I encourage you to contact me with any comments or questions you have about the legislation being considered at the state Capitol.  You can reach me at my Capitol office at 404-656-0254 or on my cell at 404-966-5804 or via email at brett.harrell@house.ga.gov

Thank you,


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George Wilson February 25, 2013 at 06:46 PM
Eight Good Reasons for Governor Deal and the Republican legislature to Change Mind on expanding Medicaid 1. Cost each Georgia family $1200.00 in higher insurance premiums for the cost of paying for the uninsured 2 Creation of about 70,000 jobs will be lost 3. Potential lose of Doctors in Georgia as they move to other states 4. 650,000 poor Georgians may not have health insurance 5. Hurts Georgia economy by eliminating the economic multiplier effect of 4.5 billion dollars 6. Other Republican Governors are getting on board including Florida and Arizona 7. Makes Georgia less attractive to locate business in 8. Loss of tax revenue through the multiplier effect and jobs Over the next 10 years, Georgia’s modest state investment would be less than a 2 percent bump in total state spending. That investment would return at least $9 in federal funding for each $1 spent by the state. This is really a no brainer from a business and economic viewpoint and we need some smart leadership, contact the Governor office and express your concern.


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