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State chamber recognizes legislators
Local delegation considered pro-business
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Forsyth County News

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To view the Georgia Chamber of Commerce’s complete 2012 Legislative Scorecard, visit and click on “Press Room.”

The five members of Forsyth County’s state legislative delegation have been recognized by the Georgia Chamber of Commerce for supporting business.

District 27 Sen. Jack Murphy of Cumming and District 51 Sen. Steve Gooch of Dahlonega, as well as Rep. Mark Hamilton of Cumming earned a top grade of “A+” on the chamber’s 2012 Legislative Scorecard.

Reps. Mike Dudgeon of south Forsyth and Amos Amerson of Dahlonega both received the second highest grade of “A” on the scorecard.

All five lawmakers are Republicans. Only Amerson, who is retiring from his District 9 post, is not seeking re-election this year.

The scorecard reflects an overall grade on how House and Senate members voted during the 2011 and 2012 sessions on business-friendly measures.

Legislators were assigned final grades based on their support of scorecard bills from 2012. House and Senate members in office during the 2011 General Assembly had last year’s “midterm” grade combined to result in an overall grade for the two-year term.

Murphy and Hamilton, who represents District 23, said they were happy to receive the rating and to continue striving to make the state more business-friendly.

“As an owner of two businesses, I understand how state governments can have an impact on economic development and job creation,” Hamilton said in a statement.

“I am glad to be a part of this session’s legislative accomplishments that will continue to make Georgia a place that businesses want to conduct business and call their home.”

In a statement, Murphy said it is “vital that we focus our attention to issues that matter to businesses in Georgia in order to grow our economy and create jobs.”

“As chairman of the Banking Committee, I realize the importance of rebuilding our state to benefit each and every community and businesses both small and large so that we can ensure financial security at all levels,” he said.

According to Georgia Chamber President and CEO Chris Clark, 2012 saw “a tremendous amount of bipartisan support for the business community.”

“For Georgia to create jobs and effectively compete in today’s global economy, they need strong voices at the Gold Dome willing to protect and expand Georgia’s pro-business climate,” he said. “Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle were fighting to keep Georgia competitive and truly championing the needs of businesses across our state.”

Dudgeon, who represents District 24, said while he didn’t receive an “A+” grade, he is still a strong supporter of business.

“As a small business guy myself, I’m always going to be in favor of pro-business policies and I think this year the chamber especially had a good set of legislation that I could get behind and I’m happy to recognized as being pro-business,” he said.

“It’s great to get an ‘A’ and it doesn’t bother me that I didn’t get a perfect score because there’s always some difference of opinion even in a pro-business environment.”