Guidance for 2020 Ballot Amendments and Referendums

Proposed Constitutional Amendments

  1. Authorizes dedication of fees and taxes to their intended purposes by general state law.
    House Resolution 164
    Act No 597
    “Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended so as to authorize the General Assembly to dedicate revenues derived from fees or taxes to the public purpose for which such fees or taxes were intended?”

Muscogee County Democratic Committee recommendsYes.

From the Democratic Party of Georgia: This question asks if you want to give the Georgia legislature authority to use tax revenue to just go to the public purpose for which the money was intended, instead of an all-purpose fund. Right now, the government can use money dedicated to one purpose, like cleaning up tire dumps and blight, and put it towards broader use. Environmental advocates support this bill because since 1990, while Georgia has raised millions of dollars to clean up specific waste, roughly 40% of those dollars have gone to other purposes. Critics of the amendment say it would remove flexibility for how the government can use money.
However, there are conditions for the amendment — dedicated funding could not exceed 1% of the total state revenues from the previous year, and in an emergency, the governor and General Assembly would have the ability to temporarily suspend dedicated funds.

2. Waives state and local sovereign immunity for violation of state laws, state and federal constitutions.
House Resolution 1023
Act No 596
“Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to waive sovereign immunity and allow the people of Georgia to petition the superior court for relief from governmental acts done outside the scope of lawful authority or which violate the laws of this state, the Constitution of Georgia, or the Constitution of the United States?”

MCDC recommends: Yes.

From the DPG: This question asks whether Georgians should have the right to sue local and state governments as well as elected officials and public employees in their official capacities to challenge laws that may be unconstitutional. A 2017 ruling by the Georgia Supreme Court largely eliminated the ability of Georgians to challenge the constitutionality of laws without the government’s permission. A bill seeking to restore this ability to Georgians was vetoed by Governor Deal and Governor Kemp, who cited concerns regarding lawsuits from people in mental health facilities and lawsuits involving breach of contract against government employees and officials.


Statewide Referendum

A. Establishes a tax exemption for certain real property owned by charities.
House Bill 344
Act No 149

“Shall the Act be approved which provides an exemption from ad valorem taxes for all real property owned by a purely public charity, if such charity is exempt from taxation under Section 501(c)(3) of the federal Internal Revenue Code and such real property is held exclusively for the purpose of building or repairing single-family homes to be financed by such charity to individuals using loans that shall not bear interest?”

MCDC recommends: Yes

From the DPG: This question asks if 501(c)(3) organizations should be exempt from property taxes on property that is in their inventory that is intended for building or repairing single family homes. For example, if this were to pass, Habitat for Humanity Georgia would be exempt from property tax on the vacant lots they own for future building purposes.

NEWS: Primary Moved to June 9

Due to the coronavirus outbreak and closures of facilities statewide, the Secretary of State’s Office has again postponed the Presidential/Regular Primary and Non-Partisan General Election to June 9. (Source: Georgia Secretary of State)

Early voting by mail has begun (as per AJC), and we ask Democrats to reply to the absentee ballot applications which are currently being sent by mail to registered voters’ addresses. Voters should fill out the application and then either tape up and send the completed applications by mail OR take a picture or scan of the completed form and email the attached image to muscogeeelectionsandregistration@columbusga.gov. When you receive your Democratic primary absentee ballot, please follow the directions on the ballot in order to mail it to the Muscogee Board of Elections and Registration.

Although this is a tragic circumstance for our elections to be postponed, there is a silver lining: This benefits Democrats in Muscogee County and statewide because we will have 1 single primary instead of 2 separate primaries, and there will likely be a higher turnout for our downballot Democratic primary and nonpartisan candidates by June 9.

In addition, we encourage all Democrats to fill out your 2020 Census form online ASAPThe deadline or the 2020 Census is April 1 (unless the Census Bureau changes the date). 

Muscogee Democrats Elect Delegates to the 2018 State Convention

The Muscogee County Democratic Post Committee has elected the following delegates to attend the 2018 Georgia Democratic State Convention:

  • William Viruet – State Committee Delegate (Elected)
  • Ella Lewis – State Committee Delegate (Elected)
  • Juanita Booker – State Committee Delegate (Elected)
  • State Rep. Carolyn Hugley – State Committee Delegate (Elected)
  • Dominick Perkins – State Committee Delegate (Elected)
  • Val Almonord – State Committee Delegate (Elec

2018 Georgia Democratic Party State Convention FAQ

What is the State Convention?

Every four years the Democratic Party of Georgia convenes a state convention to celebrate our statewide ticket, and to conduct important business on behalf of the party. The convention also provides an opportunity for our caucuses and affiliated groups to meet and discuss strategies for turning Georgia blue.

Who attends the state convention?

Attendees come from every corner of Georgia to showcase the rich diversity of our party and our state. Among them will be all of the statewide candidates, DPG Leadership, Party Activists, Delegates, Alternates, Appointees, Ex-Officio Members of the Democratic Party, local candidates, elected officials, members of the media, guests and volunteers.

When & Where is it?

Date: Saturday August 25th.
TIME: TBA – More details on the timing for opening gavel and speaking program will be provided soon.
Where: Omni at CNN Center, 100 CNN Center, Atlanta, GA 30303

How do I become a Delegate, Alternate or Campaign Appointee?

There are several ways an individual can become a delegate or alternate. First, if you are an elected or appointed State Committee Member, you are automatically a delegate. All you need to do is contact the DPG and let them know you plan to attend.

I’m not a member of the DPG State Committee, but I am interested in serving as a Delegate or Alternate. What should I do?

You should consider participating in your local county committee’s elections for delegate and alternate. The process works like this:

• Each County Democratic Committee will elect 2 times the number of State Committee seats they have, and 1 time the number for Alternates, rounding up to a whole number for each.
• Every County Democratic Committee will elect half the delegates and alternates and hold a separate, public Caucus to elect the other half of delegates and alternates.
• There are two opportunities to win!
• The County Party Chair will appoint individuals to any remaining open slots once these elections have taken place.

When & Where are the County Committee Delegate Elections?

The date and location will vary by each County Committee. DPG will post all local county caucuses and delegate selection meetings on the state party website as information is received. Check https://www.georgiademocrat.org/events/ often to find the most up-to-date information.

What do I need to bring to a County Committee election?

You will need to provide proof you are a county resident and a registered voter.

What do Delegates and Alternates do?

Delegates represent their County Committee in all votes and acclamations at the Convention.
Alternates are responsible for serving any time a delegate cannot. The Party will credential alternates. Alternates are encouraged to attend the convention. Often, a regular delegate will step outside during a vote and an alternate will sit as a delegate on a single vote.
What does serving as a Delegate or Alternate cost?
Serving as a Delegate or Alternate requires no mandatory contribution to the DPG. However, all Delegates and Alternates to the Convention are asked to pay a voluntary $50.00 fee to help cover the cost of the facility and food. A link will be provided to all convention delegates and alternates to be able to pay fees in advance.

What’s Going to Happen at Convention?
The 2018 Convention will be an important moment in the history of our party and our country. Our gubernatorial nominee and keynote speaker is former House Democratic Leader Stacey Abrams. When we elect Stacey this November, she will become the first African-American woman governor in our nation’s history. Her speech at the convention will be an important moment for Georgia Democrats – a bold expression of who we are as a party, and vision for Georgia.

We’ll also hear speeches from our other terrific statewide candidates, members of our congressional delegation, and special guests. There may even be some surprises in store! You’ll have to come to convention to find out.