Tomorrow (Monday) is what is known as “Crossover Day” at the Georgia Capitol – the deadline for bills to pass their Chamber of origin if they hope to become law this year. It falls on the 28th legislative day of a session that lasts 40 days, and it always promises chaos.
Note: like many things in politics, even that is not quite so cut-and-dry as bills can live on as amendments that get snuck into legislation even after Crossover.
Crossover Day will be intense. For the first seven-or-so legislative days, voting was at a minimum, committees were barely even assigned, and many legislators were wandering the building – having not been assigned offices. On Monday, the Senate alone is set to gavel in at 10:00am and will attempt to vote on 70 bills before midnight (for those doing the math, that would be 8.3 minutes per bill – IF, somehow, they took zero breaks).
Our Frontline team will be there throughout the day, working to achieve victories for our values, stop bad legislation, and, yes, pray for and encourage your legislators. We encourage you to pray for them too as they face intense pressure, difficult decisions, and high-stress situations away from home.
With new leadership at the helm in both Chambers and a record number of new legislators, this legislative session has been quite different. Crossover, while promising chaos, will also provide clarity on the situation as we move toward Day 40. Here are the top things to watch and a rundown on where things currently stand:
PROTECTING CHILDREN FROM GENDER REASSIGNMENT
There is good news – bad news – and good news.
Good news: SB 140 – which deals with gender reassignment for minors – is set for a vote on the Senate Floor.
Bad news: The bill is written in a way that will likely lead to a Court loss. It does not include protections against puberty blockers, and it also actually prohibits children from seeking damages against doctors who have castrated, sterilized, and chopped off their body parts. Current language in the bill must change or we will ultimately have to oppose the bill.
Good news: Many in key leadership positions realize the language needs to be changed. We are hopeful we can make amendments in the Senate – and will be sending you an Action Alert on that front. Our team is also encouraged by early conversations in the House.
Language we support is currently available in SB 141 by Sen. Clint Dixon and HB 653 by Rep. Josh Bonner. We, along with national allies, are fighting for this language, and we will spend much of Crossover Day working with Senators and Senate Leadership to amend the current bill.
PROVIDING OPTIONS FOR PARENTS & STUDENTS
Two bills on the Senate calendar would advance opportunity for students and their families.
SB 147, “The Boundless Opportunities for Georgia Students Act” provides for student transfers between public schools to ensure they are able to access expanded educational options. We are grateful for the leadership of Sen. Shawn Still on this effort.
SB 233, “The Georgia Promise Scholarship Act” is a bill that creates Educational Savings Accounts of $6,000 per child, to be used by the parent to select any educational method that would best suit each child. This legislation by Sen. Greg Dolezal is a true gamechanger and empowers parents and students like we have never seen in our state!
An Action Alert will be coming on these initiatives as well.
GAMBLING EXPANSION REMAINS A BATTLE
Yes, we won a HUGE victory by defeating SB 57 – a massive gambling expansion bill that would have included horse racing/ “mini casinos.” That bill was defeated by a 19-37 margin!
However, we will continue to have our eyes on stopping gambling expansion, even on Crossover Day.
HERE ARE SOME OTHER KEY BILLS TO WATCH ON CROSSOVER:
Note: The Senate Bills below are on the agenda for the Floor tomorrow, but the House bills will be called at-will off the General calendar by the Rules committee throughout the day, so it is unclear which ones will make it to the Floor.
Frontline supports SB 97, a bill to create the Georgia Cyber Command Division under FEMA to consolidate and strengthen our state’s ability to identify, monitor, & respond to cyber threats.
Frontline supports SB 182, a bill that raises penalties for doxxing, to enable law enforcement to prosecute those who terrorize & endanger others from behind a keyboard.
Frontline Conservative Business Alliance supports SB 195, a bill that enhances opportunities for employment for many professionals moving to Georgia, by allowing those with work history and/or licensing in good standing from other states to get an expedited business license to begin offering their services in Georgia
HB 101 – Waiting in Rules
Frontline supports this bill, which has several tax credit expansions in it, including Frontline’s priority tax credit – raising the cap for Student Scholarship tax credits, a further expansion of school choice that gives parents the opportunity to access scholarships to enroll in private school – improving academic outcomes and saving the state money.
Frontline supports HB 188, the Georgia Dangerous Sexual Predator Prevention Act, which ensures that dangerous, repeat sexual offenders are punished to the highest degree possible to protect society.
Frontline Conservative Business Alliance supports HB 212, a bill expanding opportunities for small businesses.
Frontline supports HB 556, the Pregnancy Protection act – which ensures that expecting moms are not punished by their workplace for being pregnant, and receive reasonable accommodations.
AND, HERE ARE SOME BILLS THAT HAVE ALREADY PASSED IN ONE CHAMBER – LEGISLATION THAT WE WILL CONTINUE TO BE ENGAGED IN AS IT MOVES IN THE OTHER:
SB 92 – Passed Senate
Frontline supports SB 92, a bill to create a Prosecuting Attorney Oversight Commission, providing more tools to ensure local district attorney’s are doing their job.
SB 1 – Passed Senate
Frontline supports SB 1, a bill to repeal the sunset provisions in the ban on COVID vaccine mandates, making the ban permanent.
SB 3 – Passed Senate
Frontline supports SB 3, a bill to reduce barriers for state employment.
SB 36 – Passed Senate
Frontline supports SB 36, which would make pimping and pandering felonies for first-time offenders, to attack the demand pipeline for human beings.
SB 42 – Passed Senate
Frontline supports SB 42, a bill to collect and provide valuable information for the prosecution of human trafficking.
SB 69 – Passed Senate
Frontline supports SB 69, a bill to create a Clarence Thomas statue on Capitol Grounds with private donations.
SB 93 – Passed Senate
Frontline supports SB 93, a bill to ban Tik Tok from government & school-issued devices.
HB 129 – Passed the House and passed Senate committee
Frontline supports HB 129, a bill to expand the eligibility for the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) program to expecting moms.
SB 222 – Passed Senate
Frontline supports SB 222, a bill to protect our election systems from the undue influence of “Zuckerbucks” – outside money pouring in to affect election outcomes.
AND, HERE ARE SOME BILLS NOT SLATED FOR A CROSSOVER DAY VOTE BUT THAT WE CONTINUE TO ENGAGE IN:
Frontline supports HB 217, a bill to strengthen the GBI’s ability to crack down on animal fighting rings, which are hotbeds of organized crime and represent a clear danger to minors, who are often present.
Frontline supports HB 229, a bill to make it easier to recall a District Attorney.
Frontline Conservative Business Alliance supports SB 2, a bill to repeal the sunset on immunity from civil liability related to COVID, making that immunity permanent.
Frontline supports SB 180, which adopts the Federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act as state law.
Frontline OPPOSES HB 200, a bill to provide ranked-choice voting for municipal elections.
Regardless of what happens tomorrow, Frontline will continue to vigilantly work to push our issues forward and oppose dangerous legislation that would harm our state. Please continue to pray for the legislature, our team, and consider supporting our efforts to protect life & liberty, and ensure Georgia is the best state to raise a family.
For His Glory,