Confederate Monument Bills Prefiled for 2018 Session
“During the period which begins on November 15 of each calendar year and ends on the Friday before the second Monday in January of the following calendar year, bills and resolutions considered for introduction in the General Assembly may be prefiled with the Secretary of the Senate and the Clerk of the House as authorized in this Code section.”
– O.C.G.A. 28-1-17, Prefiling Law, 1994
At this writing, one Senate bill and three House bills have been prefiled for the next session of the Georgia General Assembly, which convenes January 8, 2018. Although prefiled bills receive permanent identification numbers, they must be officially introduced during the session. Then, they are assigned to committees for appropriate action. Two of those prefiled bills alter current laws that protect Georgia’s Confederate monuments and memorials.
Prefiled Legislation, Confederate Monuments, State Symbols
S.B. 302, Public Monuments, prefiled by Senator Elena Parent on November 15th, and H.B. 650, State Symbols, prefiled November 15th by Representative Mary Margaret Oliver, change current law as follows: (a) A state or local governmental agency or department that owns a monument, plaque, marker, or memorial, may not remove, alter, or conceal it from display until a resolution is adopted to authorize the change. (b) Also, if a private entity owns a monument, plaque, marker, or memorial that’s located on public property, the public property owner may remove such object from display and return it to the private owner. A lawsuit may be filed by any person or entity that suffers injury or damages as a result of violations.
ACTION – Contact your senator and representative in the Georgia General Assembly to comment on this issue.
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