General Assembly session opens tomorrow - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

General Assembly session opens tomorrow

State Representative Ed Rynders, District 152 State Representative Ed Rynders, District 152

State lawmakers will be in Atlanta tomorrow to open the General Assembly Session of 2015.

As the new year begins, state lawmakers will begin working on policies they hope will keep the state thriving. District 152 State Representative Ed Rynders believes there's three issues that will continue to make headlines this year.

"Of course, the budget,” said Rep. Rynders. “That's the only bill we have to pass. There's going to be a sincere effort to look at the transportation needs and transportation funding in Georgia, and of course the cannabis oil as it relates to the health."

After increasing education spending in the current budget after years of cuts, Rynders sees more room for increases this year.

"We have to be mindful that, with education getting over 50 percent of the budget already, a lot of those funds will go towards education and the natural growth of student population,” said Rynders.

Also transportation.

"I think what you're going to see is a potential mix of sales tax and or motor fuel tax to meet the needs of $1.5 Billion,” said Rynders.

It's a figure he hopes will be offset by tax breaks in other areas.

"Perhaps a reduction in income tax for individuals,” said Rynders.

As for medical marijuana, Rynders believes lawmakers will go in a different direction compared to other states.

"I really think the correct thing should be is to call it a cannabis oil,” said Rynders. “Because Georgia is not going to do what Colorado did. So it's misinformation to make it assume that it's going to be anything that you can smoke."

It's an issue that state lawmakers are keeping a close eye on.

"In fact, the oil is called “Hippies disappointment” because you couldn't get high off of it and it will be very narrow in its focus to what kind of medical conditions apply for that kind of medical help,” said Rynders.

WALB News 10's Ben Roberts will have live coverage of the General Assembly tomorrow.

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