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16 November 2008

State Rep. Jan Jones Wants A Public Vote On Milton County

For Republicans in the Georgia General Assembly, they are a collective 19 votes short (15 in the state House & 4 in the state Senate) from the super-majority they need to place a constitutional amendment on the ballot without any support from Democratic legislators. Until they reach the two-thirds threshold in both houses, however, the GOP is still reliant on a small number of Democrats to go along with amending the state's constitution.

Next year, State Rep. Jan Jones (R - Milton) intends to find out how many Democrats she can rely on to vote for re-creating the county of Milton.

State Rep. Jan Jones, a Republican from the city of Milton and recently elected House majority whip, said she plans to re-file a measure to allow historically pre-existing counties to re-form if people in the pre-existing county want to.

"I’d like a public vote to see where we stand," she said to the Milton City Council last week. "I’d like to take the temperature of the House."
[Source: Atlanta Journal Constitution, "Will Milton County be resurrected?", November 16, 2008]

According to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, House Speaker Pro Tempore Mark Burkhalter, another north Fulton Republican, is supportive of state Rep. Jones' bill and believes the proposal will pass the House.

Over in the Senate, the legislation's prospects are uncertain but if past comments are any guide, state Senator Vincent Fort (D - Atlanta) will lead the opposition to re-creating Milton County.

"If it gets to the floor, there will be blood on the walls," warned state Sen. Vincent Fort, an Atlanta Democrat and member of the Legislative Black Caucus who bitterly opposes the plan. [Source: St. Petersburg Times, "Plan to split county hints at racial divide", January 24, 2007]