Wednesday, April 28, 2010

lunsford Qualifies for 17th Senate Seat

Rep. John Lunsford to Seek Senate Seat

Qualifies to Run for District 17 Seat


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                                            

April 28, 2010                                                                                                                                                  


Atlanta, GA – State Representative John Lunsford (R-Henry) filed his official papers today at the State Capitol to seek election in Senate District 17.  Senate District 17 includes all or parts of Henry, Newton, Rockdale, Spalding, and Walton counties.  The incumbent, Senator John Douglas, is running for the Public Service Commission.


“I first ran for the Legislature promising to represent the common sense conservative values of this area,” Lunsford stated.  “I’m proud that, over the past ten years, I’ve voted for tax cuts, worked to reduce the regulatory burdens on our businesses, and consistently supported fiscally conservative budgets.  I’ve delivered on those promises, and after ten years of service, I have a unique opportunity to work for more of my neighbors by offering to serve in the State Senate.”


During his time in the House, Rep. Lunsford has served on many committees, including Rules, Appropriations, and Health and Human Services.  Currently, he is Chairman of the House Special Committee on Small Business Development and Job Creation, where he worked on innovative tax plans and deregulation to help economic development in Georgia.  He has also been an effective voice in various Republican campaigns around the state, working to deliver a Republican House majority in 2004 and maintaining it with financial contributions and conservative policies he helped develop.


“I believe my community involvement, my proven track record of delivering on the conservative principles I campaigned on, and my history of leadership in the House make me the best choice for continued effective conservative representation in District 17.  I am particularly proud to announce that, in the very first day of my campaign, I’ve secured the endorsements of Rep. Jeff May, Rep. Doug Holt, and Rep. John Yates, all of whom represent other parts of this district. ” Lunsford continued.  “It has been the greatest honor of my professional life that Georgians have trusted me to represent them in the General Assembly, and humbly ask for their support once again.”

The date of this year’s primary in Georgia is July 20th.  The general election will be held on November 2nd.



Contact :Matt Metcalf

Danbridge Consulting



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Monday, April 26, 2010

lunsford weekly update

Under the Gold Dome

State Representative John Lunsford's

Weekly Capitol Update

April 24, 2010

The 2010 legislative session of the Georgia General Assembly is nearing an end after months of hard work and dedication.  Major milestones were completed this week and now with day 38th completed, the marathon is almost finished and the finish line is in sight.  With two days left, this week legislators met some of our goals for the session. The General Assembly has now balanced the budget for the state, passed a Transportation funding bill, and passed ethics reform. 


  The Georgia 2020 Transportation Act passed the House and the Senate on Wednesday and will now go to Governor Perdue for his signature.  After years of working on a solution and thorough discussions, the members of the House and Senate worked together in finding a solution for transportation funding.  Georgians will now have the opportunity to approve a Regional Transportation Sales Tax. It has been one of our goals as legislators to work on the transportation needs for the state and to come up with a bipartisan solution.  This session we were able to work out a compromise that fulfills the transportation needs throughout the state.  To work out the differences in transportation funding between the House and the Senate, the conference committee has been working diligently on House Bill 277 for the last several weeks.  The negotiations came to an end on Wednesday when it passed the House by a vote of 141-29.  The voters of our state will make the final decisions on whether they want to fund transportation projects in their areas. 


Transportation is an issue that affects everyone statewide, from the rural areas to the metro, and improving our transportation needs throughout the state has been a priority to lawmakers for years.  This transportation solution will allow voters, by ballot in 2012, to vote on levying a one-cent sales tax to raise funds for highway and transit projects in their areas. The tax districts for transportation will be divided into twelve regions along the current Regional Commissions for Georgia.  Within each of the districts, a Regional Transportation Roundtable will be assembled and this will allow local government officials to have input on transportation needs within their areas.  A project and investment list will be approved through the Roundtable, and those in the district will then vote on the project list.  If voters approve the referendum, a sales tax will be implemented to pay for those projects.  In addition to regional transportation projects, this bill will allow for a portion of the revenues to be spent on transit capital expenses, maintenance, and operations.  The goal of this is to relieve traffic congestion within the state.  This plan has been developed over the years and includes a solution for transportation concerns statewide. 


Ethics reform was also one of our priorities this year.  As lawmakers of the state, we want to continue to ensure the voters that will always uphold our ethical and moral obligations.  This session we substantially revised some of our ethics and campaign disclosure laws.  With the passage of Senate Bill 17, several changes were made, including:  making it a felony for any state official or employee to ask for money in return for an agreement or vote; requiring lobbyists to file disclosure reports twice a month during session which must include a description of all expenditures; decreasing the minimum to $5,000 for which a disclosure by public officials must be filed; increasing the penalties for late filing of disclosure reports; and allowing the commission to issue and publish written advisory opinions on how the ethics law applies to political candidates and elected officials. 


All of these changes will create more transparency within our state government.  I will continue to keep all of you informed on our progress during the 2010 legislative session.  We are quickly approaching the end of session; Should you have any ideas, questions, or concerns, please feel free to contact me (404) 656-0213 or write me at: State Rep. John Lunsford, 508 clob, State Capitol, Atlanta, GA  30334 or e-mail me at



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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Under the Gold Dome

State Representative John Lunsford's

Weekly Capitol Update

April 18, 2010

Returning from our recess, the General Assembly was refreshed and ready to get back to doing the people's work.  It has been a longer legislative session in comparison to the past few years; however, the end is in sight.  With only four legislative session days left, the General Assembly confirmed that our last day of the 2010 Legislative Session will be Thursday, April 29th.  One of the most complex budget years in the history of the state, we have made necessary, but difficult, choices as we reduced spending and therefore the size of our government.  When the economy does poorly, it not only affects individuals, families, and businesses; but, the economic downturn has also had an impact on our state government and budget.  After months of hard work and thoughtful consideration about the budget for the state, the House passed a very slimmed Fiscal Year 2011 budget on Wednesday and it will now go to the Senate for review.  Although we are all anticipating that the end is near, there is still much work left to do during the final days of session.


This week the House tackled a daunting task and a major accomplishment as the members balanced and passed the Fiscal Year 2011 budget, House Bill 948.  One of our duties as legislators, and also a requirement of our State Constitution, is that we pass a balanced budget for the state. The House passed the FY 2011 budget during the later hours of the evening on Wednesday.  This budget included a total budget for the state of $17.8 Billion. The FY 2011 budget will now go to the Senate for consideration and most likely a Conference Committee will meet to work out the differences.  Times are difficult for many people, not only within our state, but throughout the country. Over the past two sessions, the General Assembly has had to downsize the budget for the state and include cuts that have not been easy.  The General Assembly has decreased the size of government and the FY 2011 budget is near the budget levels from 2005.  The only necessary way to way to balance our budget for the state was to reduce spending.  To downsize the budget we had to make difficult cuts to many good programs and areas which we all consider high priority.  A key element of the FY 2011 budget is that it does not include state mandated furlough days; however some agencies may eliminate positions or require furlough days so that they can manage their budgets.  Hoping for an economic recovery soon, the state received encouraging news as revenue collections for the month of March increased one percent.  Although we still have a very far way to go, this is the first increase since November of 2008.  As we are all aware, the recovery for our economy will not be a quick nor easy process.


Just as the state has had to do, we are all tightening our budgets and reducing our spending.  Bringing some form of relief to the families in Georgia has been a topic greatly discussed. The General Assembly passed tax relief this week with HB 1055.  Called by some as the  "Georgia Taxpayer Relief Act of 2010," the passage of this legislation brings needed relief to taxpayers.  This bill would eliminate the taxes on all senior retirement income and would also eliminate the state portion of the ad valorem property tax.  This Act would phase out the taxes on senior income and the state property tax and once both tax cuts are fully phased in, Georgia taxpayers will save roughly $236 million a year.  Another aspect of this Act is that it will adjust outdated state fees and fines.  In analyzing our budget and trying to find ways to save, we found that at many times the fee charged by the state for services does not cover the cost of the service.  This difference was passed on to the taxpayers of Georgia; however, under this Act the issue will be addressed and those using the services will pay for it.  The Georgia Taxpayer Relief Act of 2010 will bring meaningful tax relief to the taxpayers within our state.  I will continue to keep all of you informed on our progress during the 2010 legislative session.  We are quickly approaching the end of session; however, please feel free to contact me at any time should you have any questions, ideas, or concerns. , I will continue to give legislative updates for the 2010 session. Should you have any ideas, questions, or concerns, please feel free to contact me (404) 656-0213 or write me at: State Rep. John Lunsford, 508 clob, State Capitol, Atlanta, GA  30334 or e-mail me at