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The Harris County Journal
Hamilton, Georgia
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February 17, 2011     The Harris County Journal
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February 17, 2011
 

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Undq:r the Gold Dome CHAPLAIN FOR A DAY - L_t. Gov. Casey Cagle (left) and Sen. Josh McKoon (right) wel- comed Chaplain Paul Voorhees (center) tothe State Capital on Wednesday, Feb. 9 where he served as Chaplain for a Day to the Senate. Voorhees also serves as chap- lain to the Harris County Sheriff&apos;s Office and the Antioch Volunteer Fire Department. Voorhees Named Chaplain of the Day ByJOHN KUYKENDALL ing, days we have ahead of us." Chaplain Paul Voorhees, well known to Harris and Muscogee residents, was honored at the State Capitol last week when he served as Chaplain for a Day. Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle and Sen. Josh McKoon welcomed Voorhees, a licensed and ordained traveling minister, to serve as Chaplain for a Day on Wednesday, Feb. 9 in the Senate. "It was an honor to welcome Chaplain Voorhees to the Senate today," Cagle said. "The tradition of the Senate to begin each day with a devotional and prayer allows us to set our mind and heart in the right direc- tion as we make important policy decisions. "As we face daunting challenges during this session, I'm confident that the Senate will answer the call to serve. VOORHEES, a Columbus native, is well .known in Harris and Muscogeecounties. He serves as the chaplain to the Harris County Sheriff's Office, the Antioch Volunteer Fire Department and the Worldwide Army Rangers, Inc. He also serves on the board of directors of the Natiional Infantry Association and is a member of the Association of the United States Army and the chaplain's division of the Georgia Sheriff's Association. Voorhees spread his ministry and aide in 1978 and 1979 building churches in South America, in 2003 ministering to troops dur- ing Operation Iraqi Freedom and in 2010 agaixi ministering to troops in Iraq. FROM 1967 to 198S, he served on the .. ,- HARRIS COUNTY JOURNAL - 'TIitmSDA% : FF, a: 17, 201:1 :' " " " PAGE 7-A HarrlF ounw Reoublican Party to Hold Mas00:iM00t00gs and County Convention On SaturdaYi:00r 20.11, at 9:00 AM the Harris County Republican Party will conyend .bb'gt (0r:'other political sd:ivision) Mass Meetings to-elect Dolegates'::and;! W Delegatesto the Harris COunty Republican Party Conventi,". :';,: The C0uptyCovehtkt::wilt c0n/ono at, 10:00AM on March 12, 2011, at the samef,.1OCatrin }th.opq:)oseof electing Delegates and Alternate Delegates to the Coressiol:DiStric.t :Convention and the State Convention. Additionally, the coilvTrii0n wi,lj be:ad0ptillg the Rules of the County Republican Party and e!ecti)0ffrS .fdlF !2011"21)13 term: BOth. the Precinct Mass Meetings and Codnty,C0t)verdion w!l!. be:held at 4-H Club House; .121 North College Street, Hamil041,,"Qrgia:318l :::"e Cou,. Convention. will convene at 10:00 a.m. ' ' " ":::':i:,:.r ....... :. , :, , aliy registered to .vote and believe in the are urged ,to, participate in this process. ConVention Will convene on Saturday, April 16, District Convention will be adopt- Party and electing officers fOr the 20.il !l:also elect members of the State committe.e/:qf )gates and Alternates will be requied ]o 'the cost of the Convention. The Party State conventior will convene at 2:00PM on Fddayi acon, Georgia and will elect the Georgia Republican Party OffiCers: ahd,i,oliduct allrother business as necessary. Delegates and Alternates wHIber: ired to pay a fee, which is to cover the cost of the Convention. FOr furtherlififorllation contact Jenny Eckman, Chairman of the Harris County Repubi[canParly, at 706-464-7228 or Jenny.Eckman @Harriscountygagop.corn. -j NationalStaff, RoyaiRangersandAssemblie' ....  r : :" dl 00ped& $11| BI61 Today, Chaplain Voorhees' message of God. 'i;'i I O!NftO!ieId encouraged Senators and inspired each of us to lead our Senate in the right direction." . He and his wife, Janice, run his family | w "Paul did a tremendous job todayinspir- business, Ranger Joe's, in Columbus and | i' !... il,i"' '.' k ing the Senate to continue working hard on Hinesville. Voorhees was selected as the ! e I ;'o[ 0,01|0i 0 05@ fronl, the critical issues at hand," McKoon said. "Small Business Giant" in 2003 by the | ............. "Lq,,l..to. have Tntroduced him to Columbus Chamber of Commerce.. , .... | .all.tb.LO   b  i ud see What you're miss- my "','y; :gn'his "poignant words He is currently awaiting the publi,hg:" I !!1)|,; i,.=  -.:':.:: ::' ". remifil-mO 6'ttichallehging, yet reward- of his first book this summer. ' ' : I "  ' ': ':' ? i,oby beatsla Foster deal 1" House Approves Amen e u , :! . , 00LLnmS A majority of the House of Representatives voted Feb. 9 to approve an amend- ed budget for the remainder of fiscal year 2011, Which ends June 30. HB 77 adjtsts the total budget for the current fiscal year to $18.1 billion. Spending by state agen- cies is reduced by an aver- age of 4 percent, orabout $300 million, in the supplemental budget. State revenues have increased during the first seven months of FY 2011 by $705 million, or 8.1 percent, over the same period last year. The midyear budget bill was approved by a vote of 136- 29 and now goes to the Senate for its consideration. I cast a "no" vote because the amend- edbudget is only a minor revi- sion of the appropriations bill written last year, which cut funding for the State Crime Lab and forced many school systems to furlough teachers or increase property taxes. The House Appropriations Committee winnow turn its attention to the annual budget for fiscal year 2012, which begins July 1. DRIVER'S TEST BILL : House members voted Feb. 9 to table legislation that would require Georgia dri- ver's license examinations to be administered only in English. Supporters of HB 72 moved to table the proposal after a majority of members present added an amendment that narrowed its focus to only the portion of the license exam dealing with road signs. The bilrs sponsor said the amendment "gutted" the leg- islation, which, having been tabled, can be brought back up for consideration on the House floor at some other time. Currently, the driver's license exam is offered in 14 different languages by the Department of Driver Services. Under HB 72, indi- viduals in Georgia with a tem- ......................... " ..... ::ii::ii}i.!ii :.: f   ......... :,,, ,,,,,, porary visa could, still take the driver's test in one of those languages, but permanent residents would have to take it in English. HB 72 is promoted by its supporters as a public safe- ty measure because Georgia traffic signs are posted in English, but opponents con- tend it is an anti-immigrant measure that would hurt eco- nomic development in the state. The amendment was approved by a vote of 88-78, and the motion to table the legislation was approved 115- 50. I voted in favor of the amendment and against the motion to table. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION: .This week, I co-sponsored the Water Conservation Act of 2011, which seeks to regulate the return of surface water with, drawn by local governmen- tal entities. HB 153 would require county and city gov- ernments to return to its source an amount of treated water equaling or exceeding 75 percent of the water orig- inally withdrawn. The bipartisan proposal also specifies the minimum lot size or land area that may be served by an on-site sewage management system. Also, I am a lead co-sponsbr of HR 112, which would amend the Constitution to establish a non-lapsing trust fund for hazdrdous waste and solid waste management. Both measures were referred to the House Natural Resources & Environment Committee for its considera- tion. OTHER LEGISLATION: House members voted unan- imously this week to pass HB 49, which would officially change the name of.the gov- erning body for the state*s technical colleges to the State Board of the Technical College System of Georgia, and HB 107, which would allow the spouses or depend. ents of public safety employ- ees or highway workers who are killed on the job to.con- tinue to receive healthinsUr- ance coverage fromthesta; Both measures now go to the Senate for its eonsiderati:' GRADUATION RATESi State School Superintendent John Barge said this week that Georgia's high sch graduation rate will dropt0. as low as 64 percent, one:0f the lowest in the nation, whoa the state moves to a m0reHg orous calculation formula required by the federal No Child Laft Behind Act. Tomorrow's prospeiSty depends on the education our children receive today, and these low graduation rates show the price we are pg for year after year of budg' et cuts. A smart and balanced approach would restore ftmt- ing to our schools. It is an investment we should all sup- port. , GENERAL ASSEMBLY ONLINE: ' Throughout the session, you can read the details and check the status of legislation and watch live broadcasts of House and Senate proceedings online at www.legis.ga.gov <http://www.le gis. ga. gov> . Lawmakers were scheduled to return to the Capitol on Tuesday, Feb. 1S, for Day14 of the 40-day session. State Rep. Debbie Buckner (Dlunctlon City) represents the 130tb DistriCt (Harris, Muscogee and Talbot counties) in the Georgia House Of Representa tires. Contact bet at $11 Coverdell Le#latlve Oce Building, Atlanta, GA 30334; at 40,1-6-6372; or b emall at