By: Sen. Blake Tillery (R – Vidalia)


Just one more week remains in the 2017 legislative session and while things have been exciting in Atlanta, I am looking forward to heading home next week. Committees have finished meeting, the final bills are making their way to the floor and we have just two legislative days left.


As we all know, nothing in life is guaranteed, not even the bills that could be on the calendar in the last week of session. Imagine that! So here is my prediction on what could possibly be on the agenda next week:


HB 73 would create an income tax credit for certain businesses that create jobs and develop in specified downtown areas in rural communities.


The following bills were passed the General Assembly this week:


HB 222 would allow members of the National Guard and other reservists to be eligible for the HOPE scholarship if they live in Georgia. Many in Liberty, Long and Tattnall counties would benefit from this bill and I am glad it passed unanimously on the Senate floor.


HB 290 would create a tax exemption for certain agricultural equipment from ad valorem taxes.


HB 205 would require private landfills to contribute to county general funds to help offset negative implications and effects of the landfills. It would also add additional regulations and requirements for businesses who have oil and gas drilling permits.


Senate Bill 258, Briley Brady’s bill, was passed on the House floor with a vote of 151-1 at about 6 p.m. on Friday night with the help of Rep. Greg Morris. I look forward to many more ideas from our youth and can’t wait to see what next year’s scholarship contest brings.


On Monday, I am meeting with Appling County farmers who had their crops damaged by the recent freeze in southeast Georgia. Our farmers represent the backbone of our community and I am happy to listen to their concerns and help them in any way I can. On another note, I would like to congratulate two District 19 citizens, Miki Thomaston and Terry Cook on their appointment from the Governor and approval from the Senate.


I’m here to represent your interest and to vote on legislation that will positively impact the life of citizens across Georgia. But I can’t do that if you don’t let me know what you’re thinking, so, please feel free to contact my office or email me at Thank you again for supporting me while I’m in Atlanta. As always, it is an honor to serve you at the Capitol.