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06 February 2012

Senator Bethel Says S.B.382 Typo To Be Corrected in Committee

A small controversy erupted last weekend after a typo in a routine redistricting bill nearly resulted in a Public Service Commissioner having to run for re-election just two years after taking office, despite being elected to serve a six-year term.

Senate Bill 382, a bill that re-draws the district lines for Georgia's Public Service Commission (PSC), currently contains language that reads, "The member of the commission elected thereto on the Tuesday next following the first Monday in November, 2012, from Public Service Commission District 2 shall take office on the first day of January immediately following that election and shall serve for a term of office of six years and until the election and qualification of his or her respective successor."

Simply put, the current language found in S.B. 382 would require district 2 Public Service Commissioner Tim Echols to stand for election this November; shortening his first term from six years to two.

Senator Charlie Bethel, the sponsor of S.B. 382, said there was no intent to change the length of any Commissioner's term.

"This was an error in drafting," Senator Bethel said. "I expect to have a corrected committee substitute available for Committee consideration when the bill comes up for a hearing."