Live feeds of the activities are available below:
- House: http://www.house.ga.gov/Streaming/en-US/Channel/Georgia1
- Senate: http://www.senate.ga.gov/Streaming/en-US/Channel/Georgia2
One of the first items of business the Assembly will need to address is a "hospital bed tax" which is due to expire in June. It has been collected for the past two years in order to shore up Medicaid and make Georgia eligible to collect more revenue back from the federal government - and is responsible for possibly providing up to half a billion dollars per year in revenue. However, extending or increasing a tax in a poor economic environment will not play well with many conservatives throughout the state.
Another hot-topic item will be funding of a new stadium for the Atlanta Falcons. Yes, as the state is trying to figure out how to plug gaps in healthcare funding, it is also looking at shelling out hundreds of millions of dollars for a new football stadium when the Georgia Dome could more easily be updated for a fraction of the cost.
The 40-day session will end towards the end of March. Between now and then, let's hope that the wallets of Georgia taxpayers aren't fully drained.
The 180-member Assembly and 56-member Senate are both heavily in Republican hands, 116-63-1 in the House and 36-20 in the Senate.