Governor Kemp Extends Gas Tax Suspension, Supply Chain State of Emergency

Governor Brian Kemp (R) signed two executive orders on Wednesday that extended the gas tax suspension and renewed the state of emergency for supply chain disruptions. These executive orders will be effective through September 12th.

“I have extended the temporary suspension of the state’s motor fuel tax to alleviate the financial burden placed on Georgians due to the federal government’s gross mishandling of inflation,” Gov. Kemp said. 

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Atlanta Mayor Courts Democrats for 2024 DNC Convention

City of Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens and other Georgia Democrats welcomed DNC Chairman Jaime Harrison in a tour of State Farm Arena on Friday as part of their attempt to win the bid for Georgia’s capital to host the 2024 DNC National Convention.

“This week, Atlanta welcomed Democratic National Convention officials to promote its bid to host the 2024 convention. Our city is clearly the place to be!” The City of Atlanta Government said in a Facebook post on Friday.

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Former Clerk to Justice Clarence Thomas to Be Sworn in as the New Georgia Supreme Court Justice Next Week

Georgia is set to swear in its news Supreme Court Justice next week. 

“The Honorable Andrew A. Pinson will be sworn in as a Justice of the Supreme Court of Georgia on Wednesday, July 20, at 1 p.m.,” said a release from the state Supreme Court’s website. “Gov. Brian Kemp will administer the oath of office in the House Chamber of the State Capitol Building.”

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National Integrated Ballistic Information Network Aids ATF-led Operation United Front in Multiple Convictions

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Georgia announced on Thursday that The National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN) has aided the undercover law enforcement effort, dubbed “Operation United Front,” in the indictment of a third person that was involved in narcotics distribution and the illegal possession of weapons.

“Addressing violent crime in Middle Georgia means utilizing every asset at our disposal, including high-level ballistics technology like ATF’s NIBIN,” said U.S. Attorney Peter D. Leary.

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New Election Integrity Fears: Georgia County Ballot Machines Off by Thousands When Hand Counted

The Democratic primary for a Georgia county has been called into question after a hand count revealed the voting machines were off by thousands of ballots.

Marshall Orson, a Democratic DeKalb County school board member running for the county commission, asked the local elections board on Thursday to not certify the results as scheduled on Friday due to “numerous issues” with the race.

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Deployment of Absentee Ballot Drop Boxes in Georgia Looks Significantly Different in First Statewide Election Since January 2021

With the Georgia General Assembly’s passage of the Election Integrity Act of 2021, otherwise known as SB202, the application of absentee ballot drop boxes looks significant different in the first statewide elections since the January 5, 2021, federal runoff and special election for Georgia’s two U.S. Senate seats.

The use of drop boxes in the November 2020 presidential and January 2021 elections were enabled by an emergency rule promulgated by the State Election Board in June of 2020. During the November 2020 election, more than 300 absentee ballot drop boxes were deployed throughout the state, funded with $45 million in “Zuck Bucks” that flowed through the Center for Technology and Civic Life (CTCL) into Georgia, according to analysis conducted by Capital Research Center.

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John Fredericks-Led ‘Team Trump Georgia Bus Tour’ Kicks Off, Highlighting Election Fraud and the Goal to Turn Georgia Counties Red

The Team Trump Georgia Bus Tour, a state-wide circuit supporting Trump-endorsed political candidates, hit the road Monday morning at Wild Wings restaurant in Dunwoody, Georgia.

DeKalb County Republican Party Chairman Marci McCarthy stated, “We’re thrilled to be here in welcoming the John Fredericks Georgia Trump Bus Tour here in DeKalb County, Georgia! We’re the kickoff stop, and we are going to vote DeKalb red.”

Garland Favorito, the head of the Georgia-based election integrity group, VoterGA, added, “It’s really got to change now or we’re going to lose Georgia, and if we lose Georgia we’re going to lose America, and if we lose America we’re going to lose the world. So this is huge.”

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Georgia Police Investigate Referee Attack During Church Basketball Game

Police in DeKalb County are investigating an assault on a referee during a youth basketball game at Stronghold Christian Church.

According to a video posted on social media, multiple individuals pursued the referee after the game ended, surrounding him so he could not escape.

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DeKalb County GOP Chair Blasts Brad Raffensperger for Claiming Credit for Georgia’s High Ranking Election Security Scorecard

The Washington, D.C.-based Heritage Foundation this month ranked Georgia first on its election integrity scorecard, and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger took credit. DeKalb County Republican Party Chair Marci McCarthy said this week, however, that Raffensperger was out of line to make such a statement. McCarthy wrote on the DeKalb County GOP’s website that Raffensperger “unilaterally weakened Voter ID protections and controls” and “did not strengthen them.”

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DeKalb County GOP Chair: Georgia Law Was Violated in November 2020 Election and Results Should Not Have Been Certified

During the November 3, 2020 presidential election, Georgia law was broken in DeKalb County and, as such, the results should never have been certified, according to the chair of the Republican Party there.

Marci McCarthy, head of the DeKalb County GOP since April 2021, told The Georgia Star News that the handling of absentee ballots in her home county during the November 2020 election violated Georgia law.

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DeKalb County Voter Says Her Address Was Changed and an Absentee Ballot Requested to Steal Her Vote

In a case of what she says could be for no other purpose than vote stealing, a DeKalb County voter had her address changed and an absentee ballot requested for the November 3, 2020, presidential election, telling her story to The Georgia Star News exclusively in order to share the information with the public.

“Please get this information out – it is very important,” Mary Williams Benefield told The Star News.

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Georgia Opens Probe into Drop Box Ballots, Chain of Custody in DeKalb County

The Georgia Secretary of State’s office has opened an investigation into the handling of drop box ballots last November in one of the state’s Democratic strongholds following a media report that there were problems with chain of custody documentation in DeKalb County.

The probe, confirmed in a statement to Just the News, comes at a tumultuous time for DeKalb County, whose elections director was placed on an extended leave of absence two weeks ago. Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger’s office said the probe is ongoing and the county is cooperating.

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While DeKalb County Remains Silent, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger Tells CNN the County’s Elections Director Leave of Absence Is Related to 2020 Election Job Performance

While DeKalb County officials have refused to indicate whether the extended leave of absence of Elections Director Erica Hamilton is job related, Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger said during a CNN interview that the leave was an outcome of an investigation related to the violation of absentee ballot chain of custody rules during the November 2020 election.

A joint statement issued by DeKalb Board of Registration and Elections Chair Dele Lowman Smith and Vice-Chair Nancy Jester announced that effective September 9, Erica Hamilton was on an extended leave of absence from her role as director of DeKalb County Registration and Elections. 

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DeKalb County Officials Won’t Say If Elections Director’s Leave of Absence Is Performance Related, Paid or Unpaid

When the heads of the DeKalb County Board of Registration and Elections announced that effective September 9, 2021, Erica Hamilton is on an extended leave of absence from her role as Director of DeKalb County Registration and Elections, noticeably missing from the statement was whether Hamilton’s leave was related to her job performance and whether the leave was paid or unpaid.

The joint statement, issued by DeKalb Board of Registration and Elections Chair Dele Lowman Smith and Vice-Chair Nancy Jester, came just 6 business days after The Georgia Star News reported that 43,000 absentee ballots deposited into DeKalb County drop boxes were counted during the November 2020 election, despite violating a chain of custody rule.

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Analysis of DeKalb County 2020 Election Absentee Ballot Transfer Forms Identifies Several Problems

An analysis by The Georgia Star News of DeKalb County’s absentee ballot drop box transfer forms from the November 2020 election identified a number of problems that puts the documents out of compliance with the Georgia Board of Election Emergency Rule 183-1-14-1.8-.14.

The Star News reviewed 725 absentee ballot drop box transfer forms, obtained from the DeKalb County law department in response to an open records request, that were used by DeKalb County during the November 2020 election to document the chain of custody of the 61,731 absentee ballots deposited in drop boxes .

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43,000 Absentee Ballot Votes Counted in DeKalb County 2020 Election Violated Chain of Custody Rule

43,907 of the 61,731 absentee ballots deposited in drop boxes in the November 2020 presidential election in DeKalb County, Georgia–72 percent–were counted in official tallies certified by the county and the state, despite violating chain of custody requirements set forward in Georgia Emergency Rule 183-1-14-1.8-.14  promulgated by the Georgia State Election Board at its July 1, 2020, meeting.

That rule states absentee ballots placed in drop boxes, “shall be immediately transported to the county registrar” by the two person collection team, which is required to sign a ballot transfer form indicating the number of ballots picked up, the time the ballots were picked up, and the location of the drop box, and that, “The county registrar or a designee thereof shall sign the ballot transfer form upon receipt of the ballots from the collection team.”

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DeKalb Residents Won’t Face Eviction as Local Judge Orders Moratorium to Continue

Front porch of a home with chair and plant

A local judge has ordered that DeKelb County landlords may not evict tenants as the national moratorium on evictions expires.

“DeKalb Chief Superior Court Judge Asha Jackson recently signed a new emergency order creating a ban on evictions throughout the county for another 60 days,” The Atlanta Journal-Constitution said. “The order was based on the continued COVID-19 public health emergency and the cyberattack that targeted DeKalb’s Tenant-Landlord Assistance Coalition earlier this year, dramatically slowing its distribution of federal aid.”

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GOP Warns Far-Left Georgia Democrat Will Serve as a Political Independent on DeKalb County Registrations and Elections Board

DeKalb County Superior Court Judge Asha F. Jackson, as the law mandates, picked two Republicans and two Democrats to serve on that county’s Board of Registrations and Elections (BRE) and, lastly, an at-large political independent. But, as DeKalb County GOP Chairwoman Marci McCarthy told The Georgia Star News on Tuesday, the independent Jackson selected, Karli Swift, is anything but. McCarthy said Swift’s views lean hard-left.

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Metro Atlanta Leaders to Use Federal Money to Address Crime

Keisha Lance Bottoms

Leaders in the metro Atlanta area said they plan to use American Rescue Plan funding to address public safety issues.

Officials in Fulton and DeKalb counties and the city of Atlanta have announced plans to use a portion of the federal aid to increase public safety or address criminal justice backlogs.

According to several reports, Atlanta and adjacent cities have seen a spike in crime over the past year. State lawmakers have launched a study to look at ways to curb the issue. Gov. Brian Kemp directed $5 million last month from his emergency fund to address the crisis.

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Brad Raffensperger Says Three Georgia Counties ‘Failed to Do Their Absentee Ballot Transfer Forms’ in Compliance with Rules and Regulations

Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger on Wednesday announced that he had referred three counties for investigation after they bucked state law and failed to do their absentee ballot transfer forms from last November’s presidential election. Raffensperger, in a press release, identified those three counties as Coffee, Grady, and Taylor. The three counties account for only 0.37 percent of all absentee ballots cast in last year’s election, he said.

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DeKalb County Fails to Produce Drop Box Absentee Ballot Transfer Forms Required by State Election Board Emergency Rule

With the January 5 run-off election for two U.S. Senate seats underway and election practices in Georgia for the November 3 presidential election remaining under intense scrutiny, DeKalb County has failed to produce the drop box absentee ballot transfer forms that are required under a State Election Board emergency rule.

Absentee ballot transfer forms are a critical piece in the chain of custody for votes deposited into the approximately 300 drop boxes deployed throughout the state of Georgia for the November election.  DeKalb County, with its 34 drop box locations, accounted for more than 10 percent of Georgia’s absentee ballot drop boxes.

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DeKalb County Cannot Find Chain of Custody Records for Absentee Ballots Deposited in Drop Boxes: ‘It Has Not Been Determined If Responsive Records to Your Request Exist’

  DeKalb County responded to an Open Records Request from The Georgia Star News to produce the ballot transfer forms that formed the critical chain of custody link in the absentee ballots deposited in the near 300 drop boxes in the state and transported to county election offices in a…

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