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Sales tax holidays OK’d for this year

The General Assembly has re-upped on the state’s sales tax holidays for school supplies and energy efficient products.

The Senate gave final approval to House Bill 120 on Wednesday. That sets the school supplies and clothing holiday for July 30-Aug. 2 this year.

The holiday for energy efficient products, with a price tag of $1,500 or less, would be Oct. 1-4.

Assuming Gov. Sonny Perdue signs off on this bill, consumers wouldn’t pay state sales taxes on those purchases on those weekends.

FEES FOR PROBATIONERS APPROVED IN SENATE

Probationers who have to check in at day reporting centers would have to pay as much as $10 a day to help fund the centers under legislation that passed the Georgia state Senate on Wednesday.

House Bill 344 also has passed the Georgia House of Representatives but in a slightly different form. The Senate version includes an exemption for indigent probationers and will have to go back to the House for consideration before it can get final passage, said state Sen. Johnny Grant, R-Milledgeville.

Day reporting centers are a relatively new concept in Georgia and are becoming more common. Probationers are required to get a job. They check in at the centers but do not live there.

RECYCLING EXPANSION PASSES

Georgia would expand recycling programs in state buildings under legislation that has passed the General Assembly.

House Bill 310 adds new recyclables to the materials expected to be collected for recycling in state buildings. Steel cans, plastic and glass bottles and cardboard were added to the list of recyclables, joining aluminum and paper.

The measure passed the Senate unanimously Wednesday and already has passed the House. It awaits Gov. Sonny Perdue’s signature to become law.

BINGO BILL DIES

Legislation that would increase the prize limits for Bingo games apparently has died for this session, meaning the current caps will stay in place.

A measure increasing the limits passed the House but never made it to the Senate floor.

“It appears that it’s dead for the session,” said state Sen. John Douglas, a Social Circle Republican who has worked on the bill.

The current limit for games is $1,500 a day.

NU-WAY IN ATLANTA

Amid the hustle of one of the General Assembly’s last days, parts of the state Capitol took on the distinct smell of Nu-Way chili dogs Wednesday.

It was Nu-Way day at the Capitol, and the Greater Macon Chamber of Commerce brought 1,200 hot dogs up from Macon.

Legislators, legislative aides and lobbyists flew through them. The chamber ran out of slaw and mustard and didn’t have many dogs left as the lunch hour wound down.

“That’s a lot of hot dogs,” chamber president Chip Cherry said.

Compiled by Telegraph staff writer Travis Fain.

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