Becoming a State Representative in Georgia: A Step-by-Step Guide

Becoming a state representative in Georgia is a process that requires dedication and commitment. It is most common to seek the support of a major political party, such as the Democrats or Republicans. To be eligible for nomination as a party candidate, you must be a member of a political party recognized by the state. In this article, we will explain the criteria for becoming a member of the General Assembly of Georgia, the state's legislative branch, and how much money they earn as established in the Constitution. The General Assembly of Georgia is the state legislature of the United States.

It is bicameral and consists of the Senate and the House of Representatives. Each of the 236 members of the General Assembly serves two-year terms and is directly elected by the voters of their district. The Constitution of Georgia confers all legislative power to the General Assembly. Both chambers have similar powers, although each also has unique functions. For example, the presentation of appropriations bills only occurs in the House of Representatives, while the Senate is tasked with confirming the governor's appointments.

The General Assembly meets at the Georgia State Capitol in Atlanta. Between 1783 and 1795, the General Assembly of Georgia met in both Savannah and Augusta. This was due to tensions between the two cities, causing then-governor Lyman Hall to officially reside in both places. On February 22, 1785, the General Assembly held its last meeting in Savannah, as Augusta had become the official capital due to pressure from the general population to have its capital in the center of the state. As the population dispersed, displacing the geographical center, it was determined that the state capital also needed to move. In 1786, the legislature appointed a commission to find a suitable location that would be fundamental to the new demography.

The commission recommended Louisville, which would become Georgia's first planned capital and house its first capitol building. Due to numerous construction delays and having to build from scratch, it took a decade for Louisville to be completed. The name Louisville was chosen by the General Assembly in honor of King Louis XVI of France for his help during the War of Independence. In 1804, it was decided that another capital would be needed. Later, a law was passed authorizing construction on 3,240 acres (13 km) in what is now Baldwin County. The city was named Milledgeville in honor of Governor John Milledge. It should be noted that the dome above the capitol building is clad in real gold, most of which comes from Dahlonega, Georgia.

This roof has given rise to local colloquialisms; for example, if someone wanted to ask what was happening with the General Assembly they could ask what was happening under 'the golden dome'.The General Assembly meets in regular session on the second Monday of January for no more than 40 legislative (instead of calendar) days each year. Neither chamber may adjourn during a regular session for more than three days or meet anywhere other than at the state capitol without consent from both chambers. Both houses can determine their own rules and procedures. Before taking office, senators and representatives must take (or affirm) an oath stipulated by state law. The majority of members present in each chamber constitutes a quorum for conducting business.

A smaller number may adjourn from one day to another and force their absent members to be present. Whenever there is a vacancy in either chamber - which occurs when a member dies, resigns or moves from their district - it must be filled according to Georgia law and Constitution. If this happens before the end of their term's second year then Governor must issue a special election order within ten days; if it happens after then Governor may choose whether or not to issue an order. However if it happens during a special session then Governor must issue an order within two days; if it happens after but before special session ends then Governor must issue an order within five days. In all cases election must take place between 30-60 days after order is issued. No member can be expelled except by two-thirds vote from their chamber. If someone is found guilty of contempt then they can be imprisoned if ordered by either House or Senate. All General Assembly elections are recorded and appear in each chamber's diary.

Sessions are open to public except when either chamber makes an exception. To become a senator you must meet certain criteria: you must be 25 years old or older; you must be a citizen of both United States and Georgia for at least two years; you must be a legal resident of your district; and you must take an oath before taking office. Members of House must also meet these requirements but they must also be 21 years old or older. All members must take an oath before taking office and majority present constitutes quorum for conducting business.

Lauren Boyne
Lauren Boyne

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