Archive for August, 2009

Update III: House panel votes to send road planner’s nomination to full committee

Update 3:30 p.m.: If Tuesday’s hearing was any indication, Gov. Sonny Perdue’s choice to become the state’s first transportation planning director should have little trouble getting confirmed by the House Transportation Committee next week.

Todd Long, a veteran civil engineer with years of service at the Department of Transportation, encountered little in the way of opposition Tuesday at a confirmation hearing before a special transportation subcommittee. After more than three hours of questioning, the subcommittee unanimously voted to send Long’s nomination to the full committee.

“We look forward to seeing you then for more fun and frivolity,” subcommittee chairman Rep. Ed Rynders (R-Albany) joked after the voice vote. The full committee will meet Aug. 19.

Long, a Georgia Tech grad, is Perdue’s choice to lead the state’s road planning efforts, via a position created by the transportation reform bill approved this past legislative session. That bill also gave the House …

Continue reading Update III: House panel votes to send road planner’s nomination to full committee »

Gov’s staff announces furloughs; Perdue already took his

When Gov. Sonny Perdue announced last month that all state employees would face furlough days to help balance the budget, he made sure to point out that he and his staff would be included.

Monday his staff said their three furlough days have been scheduled and that Perdue has already taken his.

“He worked on all three of the days,” Perdue communications director Bert Brantley said.

Half of the governor’s staff will take off at a time so that at least half the staff is in the office to deal with the business of the state. Half of Perdue’s aides will be off Sept. 4, the other half on Sept. 8. The routine repeats Nov. 25 and Nov. 30 and Dec. 23 and Dec. 31.

House and Senate staff, too, have worked out details of their furlough days, although many of them are used to it as legislative aides have been taking unpaid days off since the beginning of the calendar year.

Continue reading Gov’s staff announces furloughs; Perdue already took his »

MoveOn.org targets Barrow over health care vote

Left-wing giant MoveOn.org typically keeps Republicans squarely in its well-funded sights. But, with President Barack Obama’s plans for health care reform facing obstacles, MoveOn is widening its target set.

Now in its crosshairs: U.S. Rep. John Barrow (D-Ga.)

Barrow was one of the so-called Blue Dog Democrats who voted against the president’s health care plans in a House committee vote last Friday.  A radio ad slamming Barrow for the vote begins in his Georgia district on Wednesday, the group said.

Barrow’s spokeswoman was not immediately available to respond.

You can listen to the ad below. But here are the highlights:

“But when Congressman John Barrow recently had a chance to help fix our health care crisis, he voted no. Instead of helping Georgia families get more affordable, quality health care choices, Congressman Barrow sided with the special interests and insurance companies.”

It then gives Barrow’s Washington phone number and suggests voters ask him to change his …

Continue reading MoveOn.org targets Barrow over health care vote »

Olens gains primary opponent in bid for AG

Former U.S. Attorney Max Wood will seek the 2010 Republican nomination for attorney general, giving Cobb County’s Sam Olens a formidable primary opponent.

For the past eight years Wood has served as U.S. attorney for the Middle District of Georgia, headquartered in Macon. Appointed in 2001 by former President George W. Bush, Wood resigned July 31, as is customary when a new president takes office.

Olens, the chairman of the Cobb County Commission, had been running unopposed. Wood’s experience as a prosecutor and his base in middle Georgia should make him a challenging opponent to Olens’ history in Cobb County, as well as his chairmanship of the Atlanta Regional Commission and long history of being a top GOP activist.

Two Democrats, state Rep. Rob Teilhet (D-Smyrna) and former Albany prosecutor Ken Hodges are also running.

Continue reading Olens gains primary opponent in bid for AG »

Teilhet earns Black Caucus chair’s endorsement for AG

State Rep. Rob Teilhet (D-Smyrna) has received a key endorsement in his bid for the Democratic nomination for attorney general in 2010.

State Sen. Emanuel Jones (D-Ellenwood), the chairman of the Georgia Legislative Black Caucus, endorsed Teilhet on Monday.

Teilhet, who faces former Albany prosecutor Ken Hodges in the July primary, has fought for Georgia families in the Legislature, Jones said.

“Rob Teilhet understands how to keep us safe, and will fight for our families and our community as our next attorney general,” Jones said.

While Jones’ endorsement is on his own behalf, and is not the imprimatur of the black caucus, his decision to speak out on Teilhet’s behalf now should still be seen as important. African-Americans could make up nearly  half of all votes cast in the Democratic primary.

Continue reading Teilhet earns Black Caucus chair’s endorsement for AG »