Feb. 18, 2022

General Assembly Nearing Halfway Point

Legislators used three days of their 40-day session this week bringing the total to 18 days so far the General Assembly has convened for formal legislative days this year. The pace of activity quickens this time of year as committees are busy perfecting bills prior to reporting them to the respective Rules Committees for scheduling floor votes in the House or Senate. The General Assembly will reconvene next week for sessions slated for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

GBA Priority Bills Moving Forward

The Senate Banking and Financial Institutions Committee chaired by Sen. Matt Brass (R-Newman) held a hearing this week on GBA’s two priority bills and one other bill we’re monitoring. Rep. Bruce Williamson (R-Monroe), assisted by Banking Department Counsel Bo Fears, presented the Department’s annual housekeeping bill, HB 891, containing several changes related to acquisitions and changes in control involving banks and bank holding companies and the related application processes. Other provisions mostly apply to other entities regulated by the Department. Williamson and Fears also presented HB 899 that authorizes fall back rates as LIBOR is phased out for legacy contracts that may be silent in that regard. The two bills were reported unanimously and will be handled on the floor by Sen. John Kennedy (R-Macon). The other bill considered by the committee is SB 470 by Sen. Randy Robertson (R-Cataula). The bill will allow certain individuals convicted on non-financial related felonies to work in the mortgage industry. The committee reported a substitute bill incorporating changes requested by the regulators overseeing the licensing process. All three bills are pending in the Senate Rules Committee.
Brass
Williamson
Kennedy
Robertson

Other Bills of Interest


Deed Filing.
The House Judiciary Committee reported HB 974 by Rep. Joseph Gullett (R-Acworth). The bill requires the electronic filing of deeds, states that the inclusion of an incorrect tax parcel I.D. number or the absence of such number does not invalidate a deed, if otherwise properly filed, and requires certain information to be included on the first page of security deed. The amended version allows for in-person delivery of a deed to a Clerk’s’ office. The bill is pending in the House Rules Committee.
Time-share Foreclosures. The House Judiciary Committee amended and reported HB 1088 by Rep. Stan Gunter (R-Blairsville). The bill provides for a nonjudicial foreclosure process of time-share estates. Our thanks to Rep. Gunter for incorporating GBA recommended language in his amendment to better protect the lienholder. The bill is pending in the House Rules Committee. A similar bill has been introduced in the Senate, SB 493 by Sen. Jeff Mullis (R-Chickamauga), and is pending in the Senate Judiciary Committee. GBA will continue to monitor.
Telephone Solicitations. The Senate passed SB 364 by Sen. Blake Tillery (R-Vidalia). The bill allows class action lawsuits for damages against certain persons violating current law provisions relating to telephone solicitations. The bill is pending in the House Judiciary Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Regional Development Authorities. The House passed HB 1044 by Rep. Clay Pirkle (R-Ashburn). The bill provides for the creation of regional development authorities and provides an enhancement for the jobs tax credit for such authorities. The bill is pending in the Senate Economic Development and Tourism Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Agriculture & Rural Jobs. The House Ways and Means Committee amended and reported HB 500 by Rep. James Burchett (R-Waycross). The bill extends the state’s Agriculture and Rural Jobs Act and provides for a second round of funding. The bill is pending in the House Rules Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Sales Tax Exemption – Computer Equipment. The House passed HB 1223 by Rep. Chuck Martin (R-Alpharetta). The bill extends to Dec. 31, 2023, the sunset date for a sales tax exemption for the sale or lease of computer equipment to be incorporated into facilities of high technology companies. The bill is pending in the Senate Finance Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Mobile Homes. The House Judiciary Committee reported HB 1294 by Rep. John Corbett (R-Lake Park) that provides for the timing of sending the notice by a landowner when a mobile home has been determined to be derelict. The bill is pending in the House Rules Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Gullett
Gunter
Mullis
Tillery
Pirkle
Burchett
Martin
Corbett

New Legislation We’re Monitoring

We add new bills to our tracking list daily and following are the bills we added this week:
Tax Credits for Individual Taxpayers. HB 1302 by Rep. Josh Bonner (R-Fayetteville) provides for a one-time tax credit for individual taxpayers who filed income tax returns for the 2020 and 2021 taxable years. Rep. Bonner is one of Gov. Kemp’s floor leaders and introduced the bill at the Governor’s request. The bill is pending in the House Ways and Means Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Annual IRS Update. HB 1320 by Rep. David Knight (R-Griffin) is the annual update to sync the state’s tax codes with tax changes made at the federal level. The bill was reported out of the House Ways and Means Committee and is pending in the House Rules Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Wills and Estates – Notices. HB 1350 by Rep. Will Wade (R-Dawsonville) relates to the probate of wills, trusts, and administration of estates, generally, so as to require executors to send notices to beneficiaries regarding the filing of petitions to probate wills; to render unlawful the provision by executors of false information; and among other things, to require judges of probate courts to verify such notices. The bill is pending in the House Judiciary Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Unclaimed Property. HB 1352 by Rep. Vance Smith (R-Pine Mountain) relates to the disposition of unclaimed property making significant additions and rewriting existing unclaimed property laws, including how wills found in safe deposit boxes are to be handled. The bill is pending in the House Judiciary Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Intangible Recording Tax. HB 1360 by Rep. Will Wade (R-Dawsonville) would repeal intangible recording tax. The bill is pending in the House Ways & Means Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Sales Tax Exemption – Digital Mining. HB 1342 by Rep. Don Parsons (R-Marietta) exempts from the state sales and use taxes the sale or use of electricity used in the commercial mining of digital assets. The bill is pending in the House Ways & Means Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Statute of Frauds. SB 485 by Sen. Greg Dolezal (R-Alpharetta) relates to the Statute of Frauds and provides that agreements with value in excess of $10,000 shall be in writing. The bill is pending in the Senate Judiciary Committee. GBA is monitoring.
Bonner
Knight
Wade
Smith
Parsons
Dolezal

GBA’s Advocacy Team at the Capitol

Led by GBA’s Senior Vice President, Government Relations, Elizabeth Chandler, GBA is at the Capitol advocating on behalf of our members. Also, on the advocacy team are GBA’s government relations consultant Steve Bridges and GBA President and CEO Joe Brannen. With questions about GBA legislation, other issues of interest, or anything related to the legislative process, contact Elizabeth at 404.420.2027, Steve at 404.420.2037 or Joe at 404.420.2026.