2024 Legislative Session Report Week 1

Legislative Report

The GFB PPD Team

Legislative Report Week 1

January 12, 2024

In this Issue: 


Photo Credits: House Media Services

General Assembly Convenes


On Monday, January 8th, 2024, the General Assembly convened for the beginning of the 2024 legislative session. This legislative session is the second year of the two-year biennium meaning any legislation that was introduced last year and did not receive final passage is still eligible for consideration. Everyone returned to the halls of the capitol eager to continue work from last year and address new issues that may have arisen during the past year.


The General Assembly convened for five legislative days this week and passed an adjournment resolution on Thursday, January 11th to set the calendar for the remainder of session. Crossover Day, the day which all bills must pass from their chamber of origin to the opposite chamber to remain eligible for consideration, was set for February 29th, and Sine Die, the final day of the legislative session, was set for March 28th.


Governor Brain Kemp addressed both chambers of the General Assembly on Thursday, January 11th for his annual State of the State address. During this speech, he laid out his priorities for the year which focused on pay raises for all state employees, reducing the state income tax, and increasing school safety through funding safety initiatives. Gov. Kemp is optimistic about the direction our state is headed due to the leadership of our General Assembly, and we look forward to working with his team and General Assembly to ensure agriculture remains successful as our state moves in a positive direction.


The General Assembly will be on break Monday in observance of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, but will return Tuesday, January 16th for appropriation hearings. GFB will be present every day at the capitol during the legislative session to ensure the needs of our members are communicated to policymakers across the state.

GFB Priority Issues


Both in Washington D.C. and in Atlanta, Georgia Farm Bureau advocates on a wide variety of issues that affect agriculture as determined by our members. From tax policy to transportation to environmental regulations, agriculture is affected by almost every subject of policy. At the beginning of each legislative session, GFB publishes our Priority Issues for the year. While we will continue to be engaged and monitor all issues pertaining to agriculture, the document below details the specific focal point of our efforts.


HR 519 Study Committee Recommendations 


At the conclusion of the past legislative session, HR 519 was passed forming the House Study Committee on Fishing Access to Freshwater Resources. This study committee took on an important topic to agriculture as they studied the definition of navigable waters and the impact of public trust doctrine as it applies to our state's navigable waters. GFB was heavily engaged with this study committee and sought to communicate the effects of the committee's findings on the agriculture industry. At the conclusion on this committee's meetings in December, GFB was pleased to see the committee recommend removing any reference of public trust as it applies to navigable waters in Georgia. We hope to continue working with the members of the General Assembly to see this recommendation presented as legislation, protecting private property rights. To read the full recommendation of the committee, please click here. We greatly appreciate all GFB members who took this chance to engage with legislators across the state on this very important issue.

Preservation of Farmland


At the end of last session, the preservation of farmland was a hot topic of conversation. With the passage of SB 220 which established the Georgia Farmland Conservation Fund, discussion on prohibiting foreign adversaries from purchasing farmland in Georgia (HB 452 and SB 132), and by looking at the way solar generation facilities are addressed by conservation use value assessment (HB 449), the General Assembly showed great interest in ensuring Georgia farmland remains in production. We are expecting all these issues to remain on the forefront of legislators' minds throughout the coming year.


GFB will continue advocating for funding of the newly created Georgia Farmland Conservation Fund - which protects farmland from the threat of development by compensating a landowner for forging their development rights. Additionally, we will be looking at ways to keep our production farmland in the hands of Georgians to protect our nation's food supply from adversarial interests, as well as protecting the integrity of valuable conservation programs through the clear delineation of non-agricultural land use and agricultural land uses.


Photo Credits: House Media Services

Governor's Budget Overview 


Following Governor Kemp's State of the State address where policy and spending priorities were highlighted, the Governor released his AFY24 and FY25 budget proposals. Last year, Georgians saw nearly $5 billion dollars of direct taxpayer relief through tax refunds, gas tax suspensions, homestead tax exemptions, and others. Now, Governor Kemp has prioritized accelerating the state income tax reduction reflecting his strategy of "growing our state's economy rather than growing state government." Despite these cuts, the state's coffers continue to grow, and the budget proposals reflect continued investment in education, infrastructure, public safety, and economic development.


The Governor's proposed AFY24 & FY25 budgets will serve as a starting point, as the House and Senate negotiate their own priorities through the appropriations process beginning next week. While the Governor's budgets include significant investments supporting agriculture and rural communities outlined below, Farm Bureau will continue advocating for the inclusion of our funding priorities.


GA Department of Agriculture

  • $150,000 for the Feral Hog Task Force, in partnership with the Department of Natural Resources and the United States Department of Agriculture.
  • $4,470,500 for Department of Ag building renovations.
  • $4,014,674 for lab equipment and renovations for the Tifton Lab.
  • $50,000,000 for renovations and repairs to the Atlanta Farmers Market.

GA Environmental Protection Division

  • $350,617 for five additional positions to assist with agricultural water withdrawal permitting activities

GA Ag Expo Authority

  • $21,540,000 for GA National Fairgrounds construction of a new goat, sheep, and swine barn.

GA Department of Economic Development

  • $200,000 for contracts to support the global export of Georgia manufactured and agricultural products.


  • $10,960,000 for vocational and agriculture education equipment, statewide.
  • $4,700,000 for UGA Phase II of the Science and Ag Hill Modernization project.
  • $8,500,000 for design and construction of the UGA Science and Ag Hill Modernization project upgrades
  • $2,300,000 for UGA Science and Ag Hill Modernization Phase III - Poultry Science Building Renovation

GA Forestry Commission

  • $621,000 for the transition to containerized seedlings to enhance seedling offerings and generate additional revenue.

OneGeorgia Authority

  • $100,000,000 to support rural economic development projects and expand grant opportunities for rural site development.
  • $56,000,000 for the Rural Workforce Housing Program grants and base funding


Longtime GFB Board Member Passes


Nora Goodman, who served as a Georgia Farm Bureau 3rd District Director and as Paulding County Farm Bureau president since 2003, died on Jan. 9 She was 83.


Mrs. Goodman had been a Georgia Farm Bureau member for 45 years. She served on various GFB commodity advisory committees and represented the organization as a voting delegate to the American Farm Bureau Federation.


"We are deeply saddened at the loss of Mrs. Nora, who served GFB and agriculture with dignity and grace," said GFB President Tom McCall. "She was a constant, welcoming presence at Farm Bureau gatherings and kept a strong commitment to the state's farmers. She will be missed."


In addition to her Farm Bureau leadership, Goodman was an active member of the Georgia Cattlemen's Association, was a director of the Georgia Agriculture Land Trust and served as a director of the Paulding County Hospital Authority. She was also a member of the Tri-County Cattlemen's Association.


She was preceded in death by her husband, late PCFB President Dr. Jim Goodman, who passed in 2003, and her son, John Achter, who died in 2022.


Clark Funeral Home in Hiram is handling memorial arrangements. Click here for arrangements and obituary.


GFB Day at the Capitol


Please join us for GFB Day at the Capitol on Tuesday, February 13th as more than 600 members convene to advocate for agriculture! The event will begin at 9:30am with orientation and remarks from the House and Senate Ag Chairmen at the Georgia Freight Depot, followed by time at the capitol visiting with legislators. Attendees will then return to the Freight Depot for a complimentary lunch at noon. While the event is free to attend, please rsvp by Friday, January 19th so we may accurately plan for food and name badges.


For registration, hotel room block information, parking location, and other details, please click the link below.

Click Here

Action this Week


HB 848:

Reps. Taylor, Lumsden, Collins, Hitchens, and Dunahoo

This bill would allow any law enforcement to enforce excess vehicle weight limitations using automated vehicle weight detection system. This would allow the use of weight detecting technology and cameras capable of determining the gross vehicle weight and individual  axle weights of a passing motor vehicle and producing recorded images of such vehicle  located outside of a fixed scales facility. The technology could be implemented by third party agents.

Assigned to House Motor Vehicles 1/09/2024


HB 870:

Reps. Washburn, Au, Stephens, Anulewicz, Hitchens, and others

This bill would exempt Georgia from the advancement of standard time, known as daylight savings upon the exemption from daylight savings by North and South Carolina and the portions of Florida and Tennessee that observe eastern standard time.

Assigned to House State Planning & Community Affairs 1/10/2024


HB 893:

Rep. Thomas 

This bill would provide for a state-wide homestead exemption from ad valorem taxes for the full value of a homestead used for agricultural purposes under certain parameters. The farmer must be engaged in production agriculture for no more than 5 years and operate on no more than 5 acres.

Assigned to House Ways & Means 1/10/2024


HB 908:

Reps. Ridley, Ridley, Jasperse, Fleming, Persinger, and others

This bill would require all food service establishments in the state that serve food products containing cell cultured meat or plant-based meat alternatives to display on their menus, or on placards visible to the public, disclosures stating that such food products contain cell cultured meat or plant based meat alternatives.

Assigned to House Agriculture & Consumer Affairs 1/11/2024


HB 912:

Reps. Anderson, Rhodes, Burchett, Smith, Williams, and others

This bill defines a multipurpose off-highway vehicle and ensures no multipurpose off-highway vehicle shall be returned for or subject to ad valorem taxation.

Assigned to House Ways & Means 1/12/2024


HB 922:

Reps. Vance, Tarvin, Lumsden, Collins, and Hitchens 

This bill would add to what is considered criminal trespass and make entrance upon property of another without consent to be an offense of criminal trespass.

Assigned to House Judiciary Non-Civil 1/12/2024


SB 352:

Sens. Anderson, Albers, Robertson, Williams, Payne, and others

This bill prohibits any motor vehicle from operating on any highway whose suspension has been elevated or lowered six inches above or below the manufacturer's recommendation for such vehicle. No motor vehicle may operate on any highway whose front frame is more than four inches above the rear of the vehicle.

Assigned to Senate Public Safety 1/12/2024

Bills Eligible from 2023


HB 33:

Reps. Camp, Mathiak, Lim, Au, and Cameron

This bill would establish the State Board of Veterinary Medicine as an independent agency attached to the Department of Agriculture for administrative purposes. The State Board of Veterinary Medicine serves as the licensing board for veterinarians in the state of Georgia. Currently, this board is administratively attached to the Secretary of State and is under the professional licensing boards division. 

Passed House Agriculture & Consumer Affairs Committee 2/22/2023


HB 53:

Reps. Corbett, Meeks, Pirkle, Dickey, and Williams

This bill would establish the State Board of Registration for Foresters as an independent agency attached to the State Forestry Commission for administrative purposes. Currently the Board is under the professional licensing boards division of the Secretary of State's office.

Passed House Natural Resources and Environment Committee 2/23/2023


HB 73:

Reps. Gullett, Parsons, Thomas, Anderson, Meeks, and others

This bill deals with ensuring transparency between buyers and sellers of distributed energy generation systems, including solar energy procurement, and provides access to educational information surrounding contracts and agreements for such systems. It specifically looks to address deceptive business practices seen throughout the state by certain companies selling rooftop solar systems.

Passed House on 2/22/2023 & Assigned to Senate Regulated Industries and Utilities on 3/1/2023


HB 82:

Reps. Jackson, Hawkins, Cooper, Williams, Beverly, and others  

This bill would eliminate the current tax credit available for rural physicians and replace it with a new tax credit of up to $5,000 for each taxable year. The new tax credit would be available to a wider array of health care professionals including dentists, nurse practitioners, physical assistants and more. It also imposes certain restrictions such as a cap on the number of years it can be claimed (5 years) and restrictions on those who are already working in a rural area.

Passed House on 3/6/2023 & Senate Tabled 3/27/2023


HB 246:

Reps. Momtahan, Parsons, Dickey, Tarvin, Pirkle, and others

This bill would prohibit the foreign ownership of certain types of land or properties, including farms and agricultural land, by Chinese, Russian, Iranian, or North Korean governments, citizens, or companies. It would both prohibit direct ownership but also ownership through majority stock or other specified intertest.

Assigned to House Judiciary Committee 2/7/2023


HB 251:

Reps. Schofield, Drenner, Kennard, Evans and Hutchinson

This bill would require the Public Service Commission to adopt regulations to gradually reduce the carbon dioxide emissions from every electric utility in Georgia, regardless of fuel type. It would require that by 2050 all electricity provided by an electric utility in Georgia be generated from energy sources that produce zero greenhouse gasses.

Assigned to House Energy, Utilities & Telecommunications Committee 2/7/2023


HB 262:

Reps. Lewis-Ward, Beverly, Jackson, and  Gilliard 

This bill would establish the Office of Equity in Agriculture to support current members of socially disadvantaged groups and to encourage the growth of socially disadvantaged groups into the field of agriculture.

Assigned to House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 2/7/2023


HB 287:

Reps. Thomas, Schofield, and Marin

This bill would establish the ability to set up and operate a Microenterprise home kitchen. This would be a noncommercial kitchen facility located in a private home or on a farm where ready-to-eat food is handled, stored, prepared, or offered for sale for consumption off the premises. The kitchen must meet the criteria to be a microenterprise as established by the Department of Economic Development. This bill would exclude food sales establishments, any food production which requires a license by the Dept. of Agriculture, and more.

Heard House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 2/14/2023


HB 300:

Reps. Smith, Kelley, Williamson, Stephens, and Blackmon

This legislation would establish the Solar Technology Trust Fund and impose a fee of $15 per kilowatt of capacity on retail sales of solar equipment in Georgia. The fees collected would be used by the trust fund for remediation, decommissioning, and disposal of solar equipment, such as solar panels.

Assigned to House Energy, Utilities & Telecommunication Committee 2/9/2023


HB 305:

Reps. Dickey, Houston, Gilliard, and Carpenter

Over the past few years there has been discussion over how to address issues with our state's Farmers Markets, some of which are in need of substantial capital repairs and improvements. Several of the markets have also suffered from profitability issues, leading to the temporary closing of certain markets. This bill seeks to establish the Georgia Farmers Market Authority, allowing the state's markets to be run more like a business by retaining the income it generates and using it to operate and improve the markets.

Recommitted to House Agriculture & Consumer Affairs Committee 3/1/2023


HB 321:

Reps. Scott, Schofield, and Davis

Under this proposal, the Department of Human Services could establish the Healthy Food Development Program, to establish, support, facilitate, and expand access to healthy foods in eligible underserved areas, in coordination with Departments of Economic Development, Agriculture, and Natural Resources on an approved application basis.

Assigned to House Agriculture & Consumer Affairs Committee on 2/9/2023


HB 363:

Reps. LaHood, Parrish, Williams, Jackson, Burchett and others.

This bill seeks to amend the tax credit limit for rural hospital contributions and redefines a rural hospital organization. It would increase the tax credit limit for contributions by corporate donors and increase the aggregate limit for tax credits for contributions to rural hospital organizations. This bill includes a sunset date of December 31, 2023. 

Assigned to House Ways and Means Committee 2/14/2023


HB 379:

Reps. Yearta, Corbett, Cannon, Jasperse, and Franklin

This bill would make it unlawful for anyone other than a secondary metal recycler to sell, purchase, possess, or transport a catalytic convertor. The individual would be charged on a separate offense for every individual catalytic convertor. This, along with other similar pieces of proposed legislation, are in response to increasing frequency of catalytic converter theft in recent years. 

Assigned to House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee 2/13/2023


HB 413:

Reps. Williams, Meeks, Rhodes, Dickey, Blackmon, and others

This bill seeks to grant a second round of funding to the Georgia Agribusiness and Rural Jobs program. This bill would also increase the application fee and provide an annual maintenance fee. 

Passed House Ways and Means Committee 3/2/2023


HB 438:

Reps. Anderson, Williamson, Parsons, Frazier, Jones and others

This bill says no governmental entity of this state shall adopt any policy that restricts or prohibits, or has the effect of restricting or prohibiting, the type or source of energy or fuel to be delivered to a home or the appliance to be used. 

Passed House Energy, Utilities & Telecommunication Committee 2/22/2023


HB 439:

Reps. Houston, Meeks, Dickey, Pirkle

This bill would establish the Farmer's Market Trust Fund allowing for the state farmers markets to retain fees and utilize them to repair and maintain those farmers markets and for marketing and promotion of Georgia agricultural goods. 

Assigned to House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 2/16/2023


HB 449:

Reps. Knight, Corbett, Rhodes, Cannon, and Pirkle

This bill would do away with an exemption provided in the Conservation Use Value Assessment (CUVA) program that allows for the installation of solar panels on land within a CUVA covenant, so long as that portion of the land is removed from the covenant and the specified breach penalty is paid. That penalty in current law is less than what must be paid for a normal breach on a property that is subject to a covenant. Under this proposal, installing solar panels on land enrolled in CUVA would constitute a breach of the covenant, and the full penalty would have to be paid. 

Passed House Ways and Means Committee 3/3/2023


HB 452:

Reps. Pirkle, Jasperse, Meeks, Rhodes, Knight, and others

This bill would prohibit the foreign ownership of agricultural land by any non-resident alien, government, or business from a country considered to be foreign adversary as determined by the US Secretary of Commerce. It would also restrict ownership by those individuals, governments, and businesses of any land that is within a 25 mile radius of a military facility. The bill does allow for possession in certain special circumstances such as through an inheritance or for the collection of debts, but the land must be dispersed after a specified period of time. 

Passed House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 2/28/2023


HB 458:

Reps. Pirkle, Corbett, Williams, and Rhodes

This bill seeks to make changes to the current hemp law to ensure the safety of the products being sold and marketed here in Georgia by requiring certain labeling and testing requirements for all consumable hemp products. It defines hemp products, consumable hemp products, and industrial hemp products to distinguish between the different usages of hemp plants. It seeks make changes to the licensing and registration process and fee structure for growers, processors, and retailers. This bill also requires a person to be 21 years old to purchase consumable hemp products, be the target of certain marketing, or receive samples of consumable hemp products in stores. 

Passed House 3/6/2023 & Assigned to Senate Regulated Industries and Utilities Committee 3/7/2023


HB 477:

Reps. Leverett, Petrea, Prince, and Jackson 

This bill seeks to address issues with bad actors improperly applying soil amendments through increased notification requirements and delegation of enforcement authority to certain local governments. GFB is actively monitoring this bill and has been in discussions with the sponsor to work towards an appropriate and balanced solution to the issue. 

Assigned to House Natural Resources and Environment Committee 2/21/2023


HB 491:

Reps. Drenner, Carter, Evans, Davis, and Thomas

This bill creates a definition for what is an overburdened community and seeks to establish a special permitting process and environmental justice considerations that must be followed for an individual or entity to build or expand certain types of facilities in an overburdened community. 

Assigned to House Natural Resources and Environment 2/22/2023


HB 495:

Reps. Drenner, Carter, Evans, Davis, and Thomas

This bill is titled Georgia Environmental Justice Act of 2023. It establishes the Environmental Justice Commission to oversee the permitting of certain projects in low-income and minority neighborhoods. 

Assigned to House Natural Resources and Environment Committee 2/22/2023


HB 510:

Reps. Barnes, Beverly, Clark, Au, Oliver, and others.

This bill seeks to provide free school meals to all public-school students who qualify for the reduced-price meals under federal and state guidelines. It encourages the use of Georgia Grown products in school breakfast and lunch programs to promote Georgia agriculture and healthy eating. 

Assigned to House Education Committee 2/22/2023


HB 514:

Reps. Washburn, Bazemore, Reeves, Lim, Ridley, and others. 

This bill is known as the "Housing Regulation Transparency Act." It seeks to limit the duration of time that a local government may enact a temporary housing moratorium on properties being developed for residential purposes to 180 days. It also requires that a local government must wait another 180 days before enacting any new temporary housing moratorium once the initial 180-day moratorium is expired. The bill allows for exemptions under certain circumstances including a declared state of emergency, when safety is of concern, a court order, or while a studied is being conducted investigating future development. This bill also grants local governments the power to collect fees associated with their zoning powers and issuance of permits. This is to create an equitable program for governments to finance the development and creation of local planning, land use, and zoning ordinances for orderly growth. 

Assigned to Conference Committee 3/29/2023


HB 533:

Reps. Gilliard, Stephens, Willis, and Thomas 

This bill, titled the "Georgia Hemp Industry Growth and Business Partnership Tax Credit Act," provides for a tax credit for costs of doing business with Georgia Grown hemp owners and suppliers. 

Assigned to House Ways & Means Committee 2/23/2023


HB 566:

Reps. Lewis-Ward, Beverly, Bentley, Jackson, and Schofield

This bill would require the Department of Agriculture to spend no less than 5% of the entire marketing and promotion budget on minority or women owned agricultural enterprises. 

Assigned to House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 2/27/2023


HB 567:

Reps. Cheokas, Collins, Hitchens, Yearta, and Washburn 

This bill would allow a county to establish a trespass enforcement program to provide any participating owner or rightful occupant of property with a method for designating any peace officer with the local law enforcement agency as his or her authorized representative for purposes of enforcing criminal trespass. 

Assigned to House Public Safety and Homeland Security 2/27/2023


HB 570:
Reps. Cameron, Camp, Campbell, Hagan, and Huddleston

This bill is tilted the Healthy Food Development Program Act. It allows for the Department of Human Services to coordinate with the Department of Economic Development to create the Healthy Food Development Program. They could provide grants, loans, state tax credits, equipment, other financial assistance or technical assistance to grocery stores, corner stores, farmers' markets, or other retailers. 

Assigned to House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 2/27/2023


HB 583:

Reps. Hagan, Gaines, Camp, and Clark

This bill creates the cottage food operator license for a person who produces homemade food items at a residential property for sale to a consumer. They will be permitted to only sell non-potentially hazardous foods - foods that do not require temperature control for safety. A license must be obtained through the Department of Agriculture for $100 per year to obtain this license. This bill exempts cottage food operators from inspection but grants the Department the power to conduct an inspection upon complaint. 

Assigned to House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 2/27/2023 


HB 808:

Reps. Cheokas, Yearta, Mathiak, Ridley, Powell, and others

This bill would increase a statewide ad valorem tax exemption limit for tangible personal property from $7,500 to $50,000. It also provides for a statewide referendum and a question to be placed on the ballot for the voters of Georgia to decide on making this change. 

Assigned to House Ways and Means Committee 3/23/2023


HB 827:

Reps. Smith, Dickey, Pirkle, Leverett, Hagan, and others

This bill increases the punishment for livestock theft by increasing both the penalty fines and the years of imprisonment. 

Assigned to House Judiciary Non-Civil Committee 3/29/2023


HR 96:

Reps. Williams, Petrea, Dickey, Corbett, Rhodes, and others

This resolution proposes an amendment to the state constitution that would reduce the rate of ad-valorem tax assessment on timber at the time of sale or harvest. The proposal would require that the state appropriate funds annually to each county or municipality to compensate for any loss in revenue.

Passed House 3/2/2023 & Assigned to Senate Finance Committee 3/6/2023


HR 185:

Reps. Bennett, Jenkins, Dempsey, Lewis-Ward, Newton, and others

This resolution establishes the House Healthy Food Retail Study Committee to investigate the lack of access to healthy foods in both rural and urban areas.

Assigned to House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 2/15/2023


HR 255:

Reps. Drenner and Thomas 

This is a resolution creating the House Study Committee on Environmental Justice. This committee will study the impact of pollution and hazardous materials on low-income neighborhoods or neighborhoods consisting primarily of minorities. 

Assigned to House Natural Resources and Environment Committee 2/22/2023


HR 547:

Reps. Mathiak, Gunter, Hatchett

This resolution would create the House Study Committee on Rural Medical Personnel Recruitment. This study would look to raise awareness of the challenges rural hospitals face to recruit personnel and retain surgical support personnel. 

Recommitted to House Special Rules Committee 3/29/2023


SB 22:

Sens. Kirkpatrick, Robertson, Hufstetler, Payne, Butler, and others

This bill seeks to address licensing, testing, and retail sales of consumable hemp products. It puts in place certain testing requirements for consumable hemp products, establishes a licensing structure with the associated fees, and addresses certain issues surrounding the offering of hemp samples to anyone under 21 years of age. The bill also puts in place specific labeling requirements for retail consumable hemp products. 

Recommitted to Senate Rules Committee 2/22/2023


SB 39:

Sens. Jackson, Goodman, Summers and Butler

This bill, called the "Georgia Hemp Farming Act," would change the limitations for individuals seeking a license or permit to grow hemp. It would change current law to allow individuals who are convicted of a misdemeanor involving the sale of a controlled substance, to apply for and be given a license or permit to grow industrial hemp. It would also allow someone convicted of a felony to apply for and receive a license or permit after 10 years has passed from said felony.

Recommitted to Senate Agriculture & Consumer Affairs Committee 2/28/2023


SB 132:

Sens. Beach, Dolezal, Goodman, Summers, Anderson, and others

This bill would prohibit the purchase of agricultural land by a non-resident foreign alien who is subject to a government that is considered a foreign adversary as defined by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce. It would also restrict the purchase of agricultural land by any government of, or business domiciled in a country subject to a government that is considered a foreign adversary. There are provisions within the bill that would also limit the foreign ownership of land near certain military instillations. 

Passed Senate 3/2/2023 & Recommitted to House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 3/29/2023


SB 142:

Sens. Anderson, Brass, Burns, Anavitarte, Robertson and others

This bill changes the definition of what is considered a dangerous or vicious dog. This bill revises the definition to include the following: a dog who is unprovoked barking, growling, or snarling, aggressively running along fence lines, or escaping confinement when people are present. It requires the owner of a dangerous dog as defined by the bill to maintain a $500,000 insurance policy covering any damage or bodily harm caused by the dog. 

Assigned to Senate Insurance and Labor Committee 2/13/2023


SB 145:

Sens. Still, Dolezal, Robertson, Anavitarte, Payne, and others 

This bill which at one time would have only prohibited local regulations that create differing standards for gasoline-powered leaf blowers from similar equipment, now includes an additional 33 pages of language that addresses numerous other issues. 

Senate Disagreed to House Amendment 3/29/2023 & House Insisted 3/29/2023


SB 165:

Sens. Goodman, Sims, Walker, Brass, Mallow, and others

This bill is a companion bill to HB 189. The current state law sets the gross vehicle weight (GVW) of any 5-axle truck at 80,000lbs. Agriculture and forestry receives a 5% variance exemption to allow them to haul 84,000lbs. The bill would allow for these industries and a few additional ones to haul using a 12.5% variance, setting allowable weights at 90,000lbs. This bill only pertains to state roads. Due to federal regulations, trucks traveling on interstates are only allowed to haul at 80,000lbs with no variances. 

Heard by Senate Transportation Committee 2/27/2023


SB 177:

Sens. Jones, Goodman, Butler, Hickman, and Sims

This bill is entitled the "Food Insecurity Eradication Act." It establishes the Georgia Food Security Advisory Council under the Georgia Department of Agriculture to advise the General Assembly on ways to alleviate food insecurity in the state. 

Passed Senate 3/6/2023 & Recommitted to House Agriculture and Consumer Affairs Committee 3/29/2023 


SB 186:

Sens. Dolezal, Still, Gooch, Kennedy, Watson and others

This legislation deals with premises liability action and seeks to make changes to tort law provisions that are significant to landowners. It states no landowner shall be liable in a premises liability action to anyone who is injured on the landowner's property as the result of the willful, wanton, or intentionally tortious conduct of any third party who is not a director, officer, employee, or agent of the landowner unless the invitee can prove specific items as laid out by the legislation. 

Senate Tabled 3/6/2023


SB 330:

Sens. Kirkpatrick, Hufstetler, Payne, Echols, Dugan, and others. 

This bill is known as the Outdoor Dog Protection Act. It would make it unlawful to leave a dog outdoors or unattended for more than 24 hours under the defined circumstances within the bill. It provides an exemption for livestock herding dogs, dogs sued within production agriculture, and hunting or field training dogs. 

Assigned to Senate Public Safety Committee 3/27/2023


SB 243:

Sens. Jones, Harbison, Rahman, Merrit, Butler and others

This bill is entitled the Right to Repair Act. It seeks to require manufactures of digital and electronic products to provide diagnostic and repair information, parts, and tools to independent repair providers. 

Assigned to Senate Science and Technology Committee 2/27/2023


SR 314:

Sens. Anavitarte, Gooch, Anderson, Summers, Cowsert and others. 

This resolution will form the Senate Study Committee on the Benefits of Solar Energy in Georgia. It will report on the pros and cons of solar generated energy in the state of Georgia.  

Passed Senate Rules Committee on 3/23/2023 


PAC Cookbook


We are looking for the best cooks and recipes in Georgia! The Public Policy Department is putting together a cookbook with recipes from those who know Georgians best...YOU!


We need your help gathering some of the most mouthwatering, delicious, treasured recipes you and your family gather around the table to enjoy. We invite you to submit your favorite and best recipes to be featured in the newest Georgia Farm Bureau cookbook. Click the button below to find out more information on how to submit your recipe, as well as how this cookbook will directly benefit the Georgia Farm Bureau Federal PAC. All submissions are due by January 26, 2024.

Click Here

Save the Date

January 15 - 2024 Georgia Dairy Conference

January 26 - 2024 UGA Ag Forecast

January 31 - GA Cotton Commission Annual Meeting/Workshop

February 6-7 - GAC Annual Meeting & Legislative Breakfast

February 13 - GFB Day at the Capitol

February 14 - 4-H Day at the Capitol

February 27 - GA Citrus Association Annual Conference

March 13-15 - GA Cattlemen's Association Annual Convention

March 15 - FFA 17th Annual Blue & Gold Gala

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Thank you for taking an active role in staying up-to-date and informed on the developments at our State Capitol. If you have additional questions, feel free to reach out to any of our Public Policy Department Staff and we will be happy to assist you. 


Alex Bradford, Director
Adam Belflower, Governmental Affairs Specialist
Raynor Churchwell, Agricultural Programs Manager
Renee Jones, Operations Coordinator

Ben Parker, National Affairs Coordinator
Jeremy Taylor, Agricultural Programs Specialist
Keaton Walker,  Advocacy and Policy Development Specialist