Georgians soon could be able to carry guns outside their houses without a license.
The Georgia House voted, 100-67, Wednesday in favor of Senate Bill 319 to eliminate the need for a permit. Currently, Georgians must obtain a firearms license, which costs about $75 but may vary by county.
The “constitutional carry” measure now returns to the Senate to consider changes the House made to the bill. A similar piece of legislation, House Bill 1358, is pending in the state Senate.
The Georgia House passed its version of an amended fiscal year budget Friday, agreeing to spend $2.7 billion more than the previously passed budget.
Appropriations leaders in the Georgia General Assembly must review and approve spending changes for the remainder of fiscal year 2022 and approve a budget for fiscal 2023, which begins July 1.
The Georgia House approved a $27.2 billion state budget for fiscal year 2022 on Friday, representing a 5.2% increase in spending over the current fiscal year’s original budget.
The proposal restores funding for education and other reductions lawmakers made to protect state coffers amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The House plan also increases spending on health care and behavioral health and adds funding for new state positions and raises.
The House approved the measure, 136-31.
State Representative Dar’shun Kendrick (D-Lithonia) introduced five bills that are aimed at increasing “Black wealth.” The bills propose racial compositions on Georgia corporations receiving state tax credits; reinstatement of the “Angel Investor” tax credit and qualifying historically Black colleges and universities (HCBU) as eligible; tax credits for HBCU entrepreneurship programs; racially diversify all boards, commissions, councils, or committees to reflect the state’s demographics; and annual reports on wealth within certain demographics.
In a press release, Kendrick claimed that Black communities are systemically marginalized within the economy. She added that the pandemic has only compounded the matter.