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Lawmakers shine on state chamber scorecard
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Forsyth County News

ATLANTA — The majority of Forsyth County’s state legislative delegation has a pro-business voting record, according to the Georgia Chamber of Commerce.

In its 2014 legislative scorecard, the chamber ranked lawmakers by their support of pro-business initiatives, including economic development, legal reform, education, environment and energy and business and industry.

Forsyth’s two state senators — Jack Murphy from District 27 and Steve Gooch from District 51 — earned an A+ rating, or 100 percent.

Also earning perfect scores for both the 2013 and 2014 sessions were the senators’ fellow Republican colleagues in the House of Representatives — Mark Hamilton (District 24), Mike Dudgeon (District 25) and Kevin Tanner (District 9).

District 26 state Rep. Geoff Duncan received a C+ for the 2013 session, but his A+ in 2014 gives him a B+ ranking for the biennial term.

Though he took office in February, halfway through the 2014 Georgia General Assembly, Sam Moore got a U, for unsatisfactory, from the chamber. Three of the four times he voted, Moore went against the chamber’s priorities.

Among the bills the chamber supported were House Bill 714, authored by Hamilton, which prevents unemployment insurance abuse, particularly with private educational contractors.

The chamber also supported House Bill 697, which expanded the Hope Grant program to provide tuition for technical college students, and Senate Bill 213.

The latter measure amended the Flint River Drought Protection Act to enhance the lower river basin’s agricultural economy during times of extreme drought, among other measures.

“Decisions Georgia legislators make while serving in the General Assembly have long-term impacts on our state’s economic prospects,” said Chris Clark, Georgia Chamber’s president and CEO.

“Receiving a high score on the … scorecard confirms a lawmaker’s commitment to passing job creation and economic development measures.”