Thursday, March 20, 2014

First Slice 3/20/14: Smokin' ain't allowed in school

Posted By on Thu, Mar 20, 2014 at 8:12 AM

Smoking and the use of all other tobacco products are no longer allowed at public universities according to the Board of Regents for the University System of Georgia. The ban applies to all students, employees, and visitors.

Quietly slipped into next year's budget, the legislature approved $17 million in bonds to expand parking at the Georgia World Congress Center. What that really means is Georgia taxpayers are picking up the tab for a parking deck for the new Falcons stadium. Surprise?

Rural residents of Georgia, don't panic! Gov. Deal has a plan to keep your hospitals open. No, it's not that one that makes sense where Deal expands Medicaid under the ACA. Deal's plan involves gutting the services offered by hospitals that are facing financial hardship. It's simple. The hospitals stay open, but now they will only offer the most basic emergency services if another full-service hospital is within 35 minutes. Think of it as more of a sad, mostly vacant strip mall as opposed to a boarded up ghost town where the chief of surgery is a tumbleweed with a stethoscope.

Another backdoor assault on a woman's right to choose is sailing towards Deal's desk! The new bill prohibits abortion coverage in the State Health Benefit Plan and in the federal healthcare exchange that Georgia residents can participate in under the ACA. This restriction already existed because of the state's Department of Community Health but it will now be signed into law. The only exception would be if the mother's life is in jeopardy. Victims of rape are not covered.

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