Randy Nix: Weekly update from Atlanta

Published 5:53 pm Sunday, February 5, 2017


If you follow politics then you know that sometimes issues on the national level impact lawmaking on the state level. This week at the state capitol the issue of illegal immigration had such a ripple effect. Several representatives co-sponsored legislation that would prohibit private colleges in Georgia from creating safe havens on campus for illegal immigrants. If this bill becomes law any private college that does not adhere to it will lose state funding, grants, and scholarships. Since the recent presidential election, students and faculty from more than 100 universities have expressed a desire for their schools to become sanctuaries for illegal immigrants.

I know that this is a complex subject with strong feelings on both sides of the issue. After all, we are talking about people’s lives, their future, and in some instances even survival itself. People from other countries who want to live in the United States so they can have an opportunity for a better life should be welcomed here – but they should also abide by our laws, including following the steps to becoming a legal permanent resident. It is important to note, however, that this bill is not about immigration policy. It is expressly intended so that your tax money is not used by state colleges unwilling to follow the law set in place by our federal government. I believe that it is important to consider the implications to our younger generation if we allow our state colleges to break federal law without repercussion. It is a slippery slope when we say by our example that some laws don’t need to be observed.

While our schedules are oftentimes full of important legislative business, it is also imperative that my colleagues and I take the time to honor the dedicated Georgians we are privileged enough to serve.  On Tuesday, we remembered and recognized the lives of two courageous officers who lost their lives in the line of duty. Peach County Sheriff’s Deputy Daryl Smallwood and Sgt. Patrick Sondron were both shot and killed while responding to a call on November 6 of last year. State Representative Robert Dickey presented House resolutions honoring each officer to the families of Deputy Smallwood and Sgt. Sondron. Their colleagues also joined us in the House chamber as we paid tribute to the lives of these brave officers and commended the ultimate sacrifice they made to their community and to the state of Georgia.

Finally, the House unanimously adopted an adjournment resolution this week that set the legislative calendar through the remainder of the 40-day session. Day 40, the final day of the 2017 legislative session, will be Thursday, March 30. Until day 40, or “sine die,” we have a very vigorous and busy schedule ahead of us.  Also, this year Crossover Day will be on the 28th day instead of the 30th day of the legislative session. This is the last day that a bill must pass the House and be sent over to the Senate for deliberation in order for it to potentially become law, and vice versa from their chamber to ours.

I again want to thank you for allowing me to serve you in the Georgia House of Representatives.  As always I value your input so please feel free to contact me at (404) 656-5146 or by email at randy.nix@house.ga.gov.