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Updated Friday, December 2, 2016

Thank you, voters of Cobb County for returning me, as your State Representative to the Georgia House of Representatives for another term. I am honored by, and appreciative of, your trust and support.

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The 2016 Georgia General Assembly Has Adjourned Sine Die

Speaking on Energy - Morning Order - March 15, 2016

Presenting Amendment to Senate Substitute to HB 1036 - Palmetto Pipeline Bill

It is an honor to serve as your State Representative in the Georgia General Assembly.

Thank you for visiting my website. I hope the infomation here will help you learn more about the Georgia General Assembly and my service to you. Please do not hesitate to get in touch with me when I can be of assistance. You can contact me at or 404-656-9198.

I invite you to contact me with questions or recommendations about the website or issues that are important to you. Please sign up for my newsletter to receive the latest e-newsletters.


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A letter on Education Funding in Georgia

Important Education Funding Information

Rep. Parsons serves as the Chairman of the House Energy, Utilities and Telecommunications Committee

Rep. Parsons appointed to the General Assembly Fiscal Affairs Committee

Speaker Ralston appoints Rep. Parsons to two important NCSL standing committeess

House Speaker appoints Rep. Parsons to two key SLC standing committees



Information on Joint House-Senate Broadband Study Committee Below


The Rural Broadband Study Committee

It is an honor to serve as a Co-Chair, of the Joint House-Senate Rural Broadband Study Committee (the Joint High-Speed Broadband Communications Access for all Georgians Study Committee) along with Senator Steve Gooch of Dahlonega.

Broadband deployment to all areas of Georgia is of critical importance. This study committee, comprised of of five members of the House and five members of the Senate, are conducting a series of six meetings to find ways to bring broadband service to unserved and underserved areas of the state.

The five House members of the committee are:

Rep. Don Parsons, Co-Chair - Marietta

Rep. Robert Dickey - Musella

Rep. Susan Holmes - Monticello

Rep. Kevin Tanner - Dawsonville

Rep. Bill Werkheiser - Glennville

The four Senate members of the committee, in addition to Senator Gooch, are:

Sen. Steve Gooch, Co-Chair - Dahlonega

Sen. Rick Jeffares - McDonough

Sen. Tyler Harper - Ocilla

Sen. John Wilkinson - Toccoa

Sen. David Lucas - Macon


Vides of the Meetings on Rural Broadband Can be Found Here


More Information on Rural Broadband

Federal Communications Commission Republican Ajit Pai on Tuesday (September 13) announced that he will make a push to use privatesector incentives to improve connectivity in rural and low-income America. His overtly market-oriented approach argues that to service providers have to be sufficiently motivated to make high-speed internet happen. See Announcement

Measuring Broadband America
Fixed Broadband Report

A Report on Consumer Fixed Broadband Performance
in the United States

From the FCC's Office of Engineering and Technology
Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau

See Report


 The Cobb County School District and others are proposing teacher pay raises at less than the 3% that is provided for in the FY 2017 General Budget approved in the 2016 General Assembly

Governor Deal proposed, and the General Assembly approved funding for a 3% pay raise for the teachers of Georgia. The Governor's recommendation did not specify the 3%, but he made it clear that the 3% raise is what he intended, and that he would not look favorably upon districts that did not provide a 3% raise.

I believe the 3% pay raise for teachers should have been specified in the budget document. Despite the fact that it was the Governor's intent and the General Assembly's intent, some school districts are not providing teachers with the full 3% raise.

The following is video clip of the Appropriations Committee meeting in which I asked about the funding



I am very Honored to be named to the National Conference of State Legislators Task Force on Cybersecurity

In establishing this task force, the NCSL Executive Committee Task Force on Cybersecurity recognizes how sensitive information is increasingly stored online, allowing easy and convenient access to anything from bank accounts and medical records, to water and energy systems, and even law enforcement files. Crime has also moved online, presenting significant human and economic cost of data breach and cyber-attack incidents and highlighting the essential need to strengthen the security and resilience of state networks and cyber policies. States can benefit from continually investing in the protection of state networks from cyber-attacks and securing the homeland with strong cyber policies. But in order to do so, states must have reliable, clear, and concise information on cyber threat prevention including best practices and remediation plans.This task force can help consolidate and synthesize existing resources and create best practices to support policy makers’ ability to understand and implement cybersecurity measures that work best for their state. By participating in ongoing projects, NCSL task force members will develop best practices and guidelines for other states to implement easily replicable cybersecurity initiatives. We will also engage with strategic federal and private sector partners to expand our networks and facilitate dialogues with various stakeholders. Through this task force, legislators can tackle these issues in a thoughtful and meaningful forum.

State Law requires political committees to report the name, mailing address, occupation and name of employer for each individual whose contributions aggregate in excess of $100 in a calendar year. Contributions to Friends of Don Parsons are not deductible for tax purposes. State law allows individuals, corporations and political action committees to contribute a maximum of $2500 for the primary election, $1300 for a runoff election and $2500 for the General Election.



Legislature to study giving equal rights to crime victims

Proponents plan to reintroduce constitutional amendment known as Marsy’s Law in 2017

Before adjourning the 2016 legislative session, the Georgia House and Senate Judiciary Non-Civil committees formed committees to study Marsy’s Law for Georgia, which would elevate the rights of crime victims to the state constitution.


“With a very short session this year, legislators simply did not have enough time to responsibly craft appropriate language to put before voters,” said House Judiciary Non-Civil Chairman Rich Golick (R-Smyrna). “Crime victims' rights deserves to be studied. Holding committee hearings between the legislatives sessions will give the committee time to consider all the benefits, and any unintended consequences, of a constitutional amendment.”


Rep. Don Parsons (R-Marietta) and Rep. Virgil Fludd (D-Tyrone) introduced the bipartisan measure in the 2016 session, where it was considered by Golick’s committee.

“Marsy's Law provides valuable protection to victims and their families in other states,” said Parsons, who authored the 2010 bill that put victims’ rights in statute. “A constitutional amendment would give victims and their loved ones a chance to speak throughout the criminal justice process. It’s really about victims having a voice. We delivered a big win in 2010 when we put a victims’ bill of rights in state law, but as the head of the Prosecuting Attorneys’ Council testified in two committee hearings this session, some of those rights have proven unenforceable. Giving victims equal rights will fix that.”

Senate Judiciary Non-Civil Committee Chairman Jesse Stone (R-Waynesboro) regrets that his chamber didn’t get the chance to consider Marsy’s Law this session – an issue he seeks to remedy. “I was pleased that a proposal came forward this session to place enforceable rights for victims of crime in our state constitution and was disappointed the Senate did not have the opportunity to work on it,” Stone said. “I have agreed to bring senators  together between now and next year’s session to work through the details and bring something back before the General Assembly next year, with the goal of placing an item before voters in 2018.”


In addition to the work legislators will perform on the crime victims’ amendment, the Georgia Marsy’s Law team will continue to reach out to victims throughout the state to build grassroots support from the voters who best understand the need for greater protections.

“Marsy’s Law for Georgia would provide equal rights for crime victims,” said Ann Casas, the Georgia state director for Marsy’s Law. “A constitutional amendment will give crime victims standing and enforceable rights if they fall through the cracks of the criminal justice system. We can all agree that a rapist shouldn’t have stronger rights than his victim or no murderer more rights than the victim’s family. More than 30 states already have victims’ rights in the state constitution, including all of our surrounding states. Georgia’s crime victims deserve no less.”



A summary of HB170, The Transportation Funding Act



The idea behind legislation may come from a constituent, the students in a public school class, a state agency or lobbyists among others. If a legislator agrees to propose and sponsor the legislation, he/she will then take the general draft of the proposed legislation to the Legislative Counsel of the General Assembly where a lawyer will be assigned to write the legislation per the format guidelines of the General Assembly.

Once dropped into the hopper of the legislator's respective chamber, the legislation is read for the first time by the Clerk of that legislative body. It is read for a second time the next legislative day, after which action can be taken in the committee to which the legislation is assigned. It is not automatic that the legislation will be heard and/or acted upon in committee. The bill sponsor must request a hearing, after which the legislation might be heard in a sub-committee, in which it will be vetted and possibly amended. If the subcommittee approves the legislation with a do-pass recommendation to the full committee, it will be vetted again and possibly amended further. If the bill is approved by the full committee, the sponsor must then ask the Rules Committee to place it on the calendar to be considered by the full body of the respective chamber. It is not easy to get a bill through the Rules Committee. If then, the bill is approved by the Rules Committee, the legislator may take the legislation to the floor for consideration by the entire body.

If then, the legislation is approved by that body, it may be taken to the other chamber where the same vetting process begins again. If approved by both chambers, the legislation will be reviewed carefully by the Governor, another vetting process and may or may not be approved by the Governor to become law.


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Capitol Office: 404-656-9198
District Office: 770-977-4426

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