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Feb. 18 - Rep. Gordon's Weekly Update: Feb. 11-14

By Rep. Craig Gordon

February 18, 2019 - The fifth week of the legislative session was another productive one with much work getting accomplished in the House of Representatives. We worked together regarding children’s safety, considered healthcare initiatives, and many other issues better the lives of Georgians.

A bill designed to protect Georgia’s school children quickly passed the House after receiving similar overwhelming support in the Senate. This bill, SB 25, requires oncoming vehicles to stop when encountering a school bus loading or unloading children unless there's a physical barrier dividing the roadway, such as a concrete median or a grass strip. There has been some confusion among Georgia’s drivers about whether to stop when approaching a loading or unloading school bus and this bill makes the stipulation clear, further protecting Georgia’s students. The bill is already on the governor’s desk for his signature, as legislators on both sides of the aisle feared that a delay could result in a child getting hurt, or even worse, result in death. It was good to see bi-partisan support on this important legislation and it’s my hope that it will keep Georgia’s school children safe.

The House considered a healthcare issue of concern by many patients and physicians with House Bill 63. This bill addresses “step therapy” which is the term used when a patient is required by their insurer to try one or two less expensive prescriptions before receiving the drug that was originally prescribed by their doctor. This bill establishes that health benefit plans use certain clinical review criteria to establish step-therapy protocols and provides for a determination process for patients and their doctors to petition for an override of these protocols. The House Insurance Committee passed HB 63 and I’ll keep you informed as this bill continues through the legislative process. You can be assured that I’ll always support patients getting the medicine they need.

Our active duty military service members are often relocated without much notice. The House overwhelmingly passed HB 25 which allows active duty service members, including the Georgia National Guard or Georgia Air National Guard to terminate a contract with a provider of television, video, and audio programming services, internet access services, or health spa or gym services when the service member is ordered to relocate to a location that does not support identical contractual services from that provider for a period of at least 90 days.I believe this is good legislation that supports our military personnel and I’m pleased that it received strong support.

As we continue the legislative session, I would like to hear from you! My local office number is 912.231.8958. It’s a privilege to work with my colleagues in the Georgia General Assembly and to represent our great community in Atlanta.

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