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Georgia Legislature

Rep. Tommy Benton (R - Jefferson) is the sponsor of a resolution memorializing Georgia's Confederate history.
Johnny Kauffman / WABE

Georgia Rep. Tommy Benton drew national headlines in 2016 when he said the Ku Klux Klan, “was not such a racist thing, but a vigilante thing to keep law and order.”

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Closer Look: Ga.'s New Bills; James Comey; And More

May 10, 2017
Al Such / WABE

Wednesday on "Closer Look at Rose Scott and Jim Burress":

Courtesy of re:imagine/ATL

Monday on "City Lights with Lois Reitzes":

House members work during the House's session on the final day of the 2015 legislative session, Thursday, April 2, 2015, in Atlanta.
Branden Camp / Associated Press

The Georgia General Assembly passed a $49 billion budget Wednesday. House Speaker David Ralston said it’s possibly the earliest point in the legislative session lawmakers have agreed on a budget.

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Under the plan, teachers would get a 2 percent raise; state workers who handle child welfare cases would see a 19 percent pay increase; and state law enforcement would receive a 20 percent salary boost.

Kim Kenney / Atlanta Ballet

A proposed sales tax to create a steady stream of funding for the arts in Atlanta appears to be dead.

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Mayor Kasim Reed needed Georgia lawmakers to sign off on the plan in order to put it before voters as a referendum in November. The idea was to let constituents decide whether they wanted to pay a one-tenth of a penny tax to support music, dance, theater or other artistic ventures in the city.

Georgia Capitol Building
Al Such / WABE

Struggling schools, opioid addiction and the state's medical marijuana program appear likely to dominate the rest of Georgia's legislative session.

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Lawmakers spent January and February considering bills introduced in their own chamber. Today, they begin focusing on the opposing chamber's legislation.

Here are some things to know about the rest of this year's session:

Top Issues

John Bazemore / WABE

The Georgia state House approved a bill that would strip private colleges of state funding if they adopt "sanctuary" policies and don't cooperate with federal immigration officials.

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Lawmakers voted 112-17 on the bill, which now moves to the state Senate for consideration. 

Statewide Transportation Gets A Win In The Ga. Senate

Feb 22, 2017
Northbound traffic on I75-I85 headed Downtown
Alison Guillory / WABE

Georgia's senators have passed a bill by unanimous vote that seeks to create a statewide council focused on transportation.

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The Georgia Regional Transit Council would focus on a strategic transit plan for the state.

State Sen. Steve Gooch, R-District 51, sponsored the bill.