The 156th Georgia General Assembly convened under the Gold Dome for the 2022 legislative session on Monday, January 10, 2022. With only 40 legislative days to accomplish the people’s business, the House got straight to work and spent four days in session this week. House committees began holding meetings to take up legislation, and the full House adopted several housekeeping measures on our first day back in session, including an adjournment resolution that set our legislative calendar for most of January. Governor Brian Kemp also helped us kick-start the session with his annual State of the State address, which is customary during the first week of session.
Gov. Kemp delivered his fourth State of the State address on Thursday, January 13, before the legislature and members of the Georgia Supreme Court and Court of Appeals. This annual event allows the governor to discuss the current conditions of our state and present his administration’s goals for the year ahead. After reflecting on the challenges and successes over the last year, the governor unveiled several of his legislative priorities for this year, including education, health care and public safety. The video archive for Legislative Day 4, which includes Gov. Kemp’s remarks, can be found at https://vimeo.com/showcase/8988696?video=665275955.
The week of the Martin Luther King holiday, my colleagues and I will begin the state budget process through a series of Joint House and Senate Appropriations Committee hearings, which is often referred to as “budget week.” The governor released his budget proposals for the Amended Fiscal Year 2022 and Fiscal Year 2023 budgets after his address on Thursday. During budget week, we will delve into Gov. Kemp’s budget proposals and hear directly from state agency heads regarding their budgetary needs for the current and upcoming fiscal years. The governor’s budget recommendations, along with the recommendations from state agencies, will ultimately help us to craft legislation for the state’s budget in the coming weeks. I look forward to bringing you news about our state budget throughout the legislative session.
As our House committee meetings get underway, many committee meetings will continue to offer in-person and virtual attendance options this session for legislators and members of the public. You can watch live streams of all official House committee and subcommittee meetings on the House website from the safety of your home. These meetings are published to the House website, and you can always find the meeting schedule and live streams at https://www.legis.ga.gov/schedule/house. The official House Facebook and Twitter accounts also provide useful information and daily updates throughout the session, including press releases, meeting announcements and legislative actions from the House floor. These valuable resources can help you stay engaged and informed while we are in session.
Finally, I would be remiss if I did not congratulate the University of Georgia Bulldogs for their 2021 College Football Playoff National Championship title. We are proud to have these national champions hail from our great state, and they represented Georgia well as they defeated the University of Alabama for the national title. The first day of session coincided with game day, and the House made sure to wish the bulldogs the best of luck before kick-off. We started the legislative day with an exciting highlight reel, and as the Speaker of the House gaveled us out for the day, we joined together in applause and chanted, “Glory, Glory to old Georgia.”
This weekend, I hope you will join me in remembering the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Whether you are working or spending time with your loved ones, I hope we can all remain mindful and focused on lifting up our communities in honor of Dr. King.
Now that the legislative session is underway, I will spend most of my time over the next few months at the State Capitol. I welcome you to reach out to me with your thoughts and opinions on issues or policies as we move throughout the session. You can reach my Capitol office at 404-656-0325, or you may email me directly at Stan.Gunter@house.ga.gov.
Thank you for allowing me to serve as your state representative for House District 8.