May 8-- Georgia Governor Nathan Deal has been signing laws the last few days which were passed by the state General Assembly.
The President Pro Tem of the state Senate, Senator Tommie Williams of Lyons, is glad the governor has signed laws on abortion, prison reform and charter schools.
The charter school bill will let citizens decide in a statewide referendum if they want the state to fund charter schools. Senator Williams believes it's needed to give poor families a chance at sending their kids to better schools.
"What about the academic success of the child? It's not about where the money is going, but who is doing the best job of teaching the child and producing the product we want in society. Charter schools are 20% cheaper to operate with 20% better results on average," he says.
Senator Williams believes the move to get non-violent offenders out of the state's prisons will save money and help some people turn their lives around.
"The courts cost us a lot of money. We're trying to protect the people from the folks who are real bad guys, and do a little more rehabilitation with the folks who have addictions," he said.
Senator Williams was on hand to witness the signing of an anti-abortion bill designed to reduce the number of abortions. The new law generally prohibits abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy.
"Before it was the health of the mother and the health of the mother could be interpreted in a number of different ways which was, frankly, a way to get around late term abortions. Now they'll have to find another state," he said.
A lot of the credit for the accomplishments in this session of the legislature goes to Governor Nathan Deal, according to Senator Williams.
"We've got one of the best governors we've had in a long time. This governor is just really gifted at consensus building, he's a kind person, a smart person and a governor who's not in it for his own glory. It's made for great working relationships at the capitol," Senator Williams observes.