Feb. 26, 2015 – Bill Verner from the Georgia Electric Membership Corporation

This Thursday, we welcome Bill Verner from the Georgia Electric Membership Corporation, to talk about Energy issues.

Bill Verner, Sr. Vice President for External Affairs for Georgia EMC

Bill Verner serves as Sr. Vice President for External Affairs for Georgia Electric Membership Corporation (Georgia EMC). Verner began his electric cooperative career with Carroll EMC in 1980 in various part-time capacities while pursuing an undergraduate degree at the University of West Georgia, and joined Georgia EMC in 1984 as Coordinator of Member and Youth Activities. As head of Georgia EMC External Affairs, he coordinates the representation of EMCs’ interests before government including the Georgia General Assembly, the Georgia Public Service Commission, the United States Congress, and state and federal agencies. In addition to government relations, Verner is also responsible for communications, public relations, member services, media relations and the publication of the EMCs’ popular monthly consumer publication, Georgia Magazine. During a brief departure from Georgia EMC, Verner expanded upon his cooperative experience as Director of Government and Member Relations for Gold Kist, Inc. from 1999 to 2001. Then the world’s second largest poultry company, Verner’s role covered Gold Kist operations in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and the Carolinas.

Verner was a member of the 1998 Class of Leadership Georgia, served on its Board of Trustees from 2001 through 2002, and co-chaired Leadership Georgia’s first international program in Costa Rica in June 2009. He currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Georgia Humanities Council, the Partnership for Clean Affordable Energy, the Southeastern Advisory Committee for the Consumer Energy Alliance, and has also served on the Board of Directors of the Georgia Agribusiness Council, the Professional Association of Georgia Educators Foundation, the Keep Georgia Beautiful Foundation, the Executive Committee of Georgia’s Friends of Agriculture Foundation, the Dean’s Advisory Council for the University of Georgia College of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, the Georgia Agri-Leaders Forum and the Georgia Cooperative Council, where he served as President from 2001 until 2002.

Verner, born and raised on a Centennial family farm 50 miles East of Atlanta in Rutledge, Georgia, received a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology from the University of West Georgia. Bill and his wife Betsy have 2 daughters – 6 and 8 yrs old — are members of Northside United Methodist Church and reside in Atlanta.

Georgia EMC is the state trade association for Georgia’s 41 Electric Membership Corporations (EMCs), Oglethorpe Power Corporation and Georgia Transmission Corporation. Georgia’s EMCs provide electricity and other services to more than 4.5 million Georgians across 73% of the state’s land area.
More Info: http://georgiaemc.com

Come join the discussion this Thursday evening at 7pm!

Meeting Info
Time: EVERY Thursday night, 7-9 pm
Location: 900 Roswell ST, Marietta, GA
(Roswell Street Baptist Church office building, east of the church campus, west of the Big Chicken)

Judicial Conversations Meeting (aka JudiCon)

The NEW Judicial Conversations group will give us a chance to learn about the Judicial Courts and process in Georgia, and meet with Judicial candidates. We will come to understand their background and credentials, their judicial philosophy, and have an exchange that allows us to share our political philosophy and ask questions.

JudiCon meets the 2nd Monday of most months. We had an informative meeting with Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens on Monday, February 9.

Election Law Attorney Bryan Tyson

At our next meeting, Monday March 9, we will hear from Election Law Attorney Bryan Tyson. Mr. Tyson is an attorney at Strickland Brockington Lewis LLP. He has extensive experience in areas related to civil litigation, appellate litigation, election law, and government. Prior to admission to the bar, he worked in the Georgia General Assembly for seven years, most recently with the office of the minority leader of the Georgia House of Representatives. Following his work in the Georgia General Assembly, Bryan served as a policy aide to Third District Congressman Lynn Westmoreland in Washington, D.C.

While in law school, Bryan was active in the field of legislative redistricting for the state of Georgia. He drew hundreds of maps during the 2000 cycle, testified as an expert witness on redistricting software, and drafted a number of submissions made to the three-judge federal court that found Georgia’s legislative districts unconstitutional in Larios v. Cox. Bryan was later profiled in Roll Call for his role in the redrawing of Georgia’s congressional districts in 2005. With others lawyers in the firm, Bryan advised the Georgia General Assembly during its 2011 map-drawing process and was appointed a Special Assistant Attorney General to assist in securing federal approval of all three redistricting plans adopted by the legislature during its special session.
In addition to redistricting, Bryan’s practice focuses on civil and appellate litigation in state and federal court. His civil litigation practice includes business litigation, Voting Rights Act litigation, and providing guidance for a number of federal and state candidates in navigating the complex arenas of campaign finance. Bryan has represented corporate clients before the Federal Election Commission in their efforts to form political action committees and he regularly advises a number of state independent committees and federal SuperPACs about their operations.

Bryan currently serves as Chair of the Appellate Practice Section of the State Bar of Georgia and represents clients before the Georgia Court of Appeals, the Georgia Supreme Court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, and the U.S. Supreme Court. Bryan also maintains the only blog that tracks civil cases at the Supreme Court of Georgia, the SCOG Blog.
Bryan earned his J.D. magna cum laude from the Oak Brook College of Law. He is a member of the Georgia and California bars, the American Bar Association, the Atlanta Bar Association, and the Federalist Society. He was selected for inclusion in the 2011 Georgia Super Lawyers-Rising Stars list.
Bryan and his wife, Shelley, make their home in the Atlanta area where they serve at their church, are involved in volunteer work, and are the parents of three daughters.

We meet at The House of Lu Restaurant just north of the Marietta Square. You can come for fellowship and dinner at 6:30pm, the meeting begins at 7:00pm.

To find out how you can be a part of the Georgia Tea Party’s Judicial Conversations group, or if you’re a GTP volunteer that would like to be a part of future meetings, please contact GTP Board Member JD Van Brink

The Georgia Tea Party does not endorse or support candidates, and elected Officials and Candidates are not invited to speak at our Public meetings. Officials and Candidates are invited to our Committee Meetings to learn of their views.

County and State Watch

Our next meeting will be Monday, March 16 at 6:30pm, at the House of Lu Restaurant on Marietta Square. We meet the 3rd Monday of each month.

At our next meeting, our speaker will be former Georgia House Rep Ed Lindsey. He will be talking about the Transportation needs of Georgia, and how to fund them.

Former Georgia House Rep Ed Lindsey

Edward Lindsey is a native Georgian and a graduate of our public schools with deep roots in our state’s rural, small town, and urban communities. He earn
ed a degree in History from Davidson College, and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Georgia School of Law. Edward and three partners started their own firm in 1990, defending individuals, small businesses, corporations, churches, and private schools in law suits. Today, Goodman McGuffey Lindsey & Johnson LLP employs almost 80 individuals in three states.

First elected in 2004 to the Georgia House of Representatives, Edward rose to the highest levels of Republican leadership serving as the Majority Whip for three terms, in charge of building support for Republican legislative initiatives. Previously, he served as Chair of the House Appropriations Sub Committee on Education, Co-Chair of the Republican Caucus Policy Committee, and Vice-Chair of the Judiciary Committee. Rep. Lindsey also served on the Appropriations, Industrial Relations, Education, Ethics, Judiciary, and Rules Committees, as well as ex officio on all other standing House Committees.

Mr. Lindsey was appointed by the House Speaker in 2014, to serve on the “JOINT STUDY COMMITTEE ON CRITICAL TRANSPORTATION INFRASTRUCTURE FUNDING”. They released their report on December 30, 2014.

Edward and his wife Elizabeth live in the Buckhead Community of Atlanta and have three college age sons – Harman (U.S. Military Academy), Charlie (University of Georgia), and Zack (University of Georgia).

To find out how you can be a part of the Georgia Tea Party’s County and State Watch, or if you’re a GTP volunteer that would like to be a part of future meetings with County or State officials or candidates, please contact GTP Board Member Steve Covert.

Note that the Georgia Tea Party does not support or endorse any Candidate, and elected Officials and Candidates are not invited to speak at our Public meetings. Such Officials and Candidates may be invited to our Committee Meetings to learn more of their views on Public Policy.

Federal Task Force

Our next meeting will be held Monday, March 23, at 7:00pm, at The House of Lu Restaurant on Marietta Square. We meet the 4th Monday of every month.

Will Kremer, Chairman of the Georgia Association of College Republicans

At our recent meeting, our speaker was Will Kremer, Chairman of the Georgia Association of College Republicans.

The Association of Georgia CRs is a grassroots organization composed of thousands of college students from all corners of Georgia who are determined to make an impact on Georgia and the United States.

More info: http://georgiacrs.org

More info:

To find out how you can be a part of the Georgia Tea Party’s Federal Task Force, or if you’re a GTP volunteer that would like to be a part of future meetings with other candidates, please contact GTP Board Members Jim Jess or Ronny West

Note that the Georgia Tea Party does not support or endorse any Candidate, and elected Officials and Candidates are not invited to speak at our Public meetings. Such Officials and Candidates may be invited to our Committee Meetings to learn more of their views on Public Policy.

Announcements and Opportunities

Rally to Support the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (SB129/HB218)
Tuesday March 3 – 2:30-3:30pm Georgia Capitol, 2nd Floor, South side
We will have a contingent going down by carpool. Email or call Jerry Kotyuk if you would like to join, or want more info. Jerry.Kotyuk@GeorgiaTeaParty.org or 404-374-0580

The opponents of Religious Liberty (Our First Freedom) show up in great numbers, and speak strongly & with passion. We must do the same, showing our legislators there are many Georgians who want our Freedom of Religion protected. Victory goes to those who show up!

Georgia Tea Party has issued a Press Release calling on Congress to end the Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im). To read the entire Press Release, please move to bottom of this email. Please Learn and Share about this issue.

There are 58 House Republicans who are supporting corporate welfare by co-sponsoring HR597, to re-authorize the Export-Import Bank of the United States. Fortunately, none of our Georgia delegation has signed on. If you have a connection to one of the States represented in the list at the link below, feel free to call them, to OPPOSE this bill. You can find phone numbers for them at http://www.house.gov


Town Hall Meetings
State Senator Judson Hill and State Representative John Carson will be holding Town Hall meetings each month during the General Assembly legislative session.
Future dates are:
Monday March 23 – 7:00pm to 8:00pm

Location: Mountain View Library, 3320 Sandy Plains Rd, Marietta

Future Thursday Meeting Speakers

March 5 – Julianne Thompson, Tea Party leader
March 12 – Leo Smith, Minority Engagement
March 19 – Lance Brown, Partnership for Affordable Clean Energy (PACE)


We welcome your contributions to further the cause of individual liberty and constitutionally-limited self-government. To make a donation, visit our website at http://www.georgiateaparty.org/donate

“I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers, and it was not there; in her fertile fields and boundless prairies, and it was not there; in her rich mines and her vast world commerce, and it was not there. Not until I went to the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because she is good and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.”
–Alexis de Tocqueville, 1805-1859


For Immediate Release Contact: Jerry Kotyuk (404) 374-0580 or Jim Jess (770) 403-9853

Georgia Tea Party calls on Congress to end the Export-Import Bank

Marietta, Georgia – February 4, 2015 – Georgia Tea Party Inc. (GTPI), a non-partisan advocacy group headquartered in Marietta, is calling on the U.S. Congress to end authorization and funding for the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank. This government relic of the 1930’s claims to facilitate exports and imports for American companies. However, it actually interferes with and manipulates the free market, causing economic distortion, cronyism, and capital risk to taxpayers, according to research from The Heritage Foundation and Heritage Action for America.

With U.S. exports reaching record-high levels, and with 98 percent of exports unaided by Ex-Im, there is no evidence that this funding is necessary. In addition to its minimal job-creating contribution, Ex-Im is a risk to taxpayer funds. Both the GAO and the Inspector General have warned that their “loan-loss rate” is suspect, and that the bank is not properly protected against waste, fraud, and abuse. The Congressional Budget Office found that, under proper accounting standards, Ex-Im costs U.S. taxpayers an average $200 million per year in losses.

Despite claims of supporters like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Ex-Im provides very little help to small businesses. In actuality, Ex-Im’s loan activity is concentrated in a few wealthy and well-connected industries. By some estimates, the Boeing Corporation accounted for more than 80 percent of Ex-Im’s loan guarantees in 2012. Boeing recently acknowledged that it could arrange alternative financing if it became necessary.

Loan guarantees are also provided to foreign companies and governments, often to the detriment of American businesses. For example, two-thirds of the bank’s loan guarantees in 2013 backed Boeing sales to rivals of U.S. airlines. Atlanta-based Delta Airlines blamed Ex-Im for having to halt its New York-Mumbai service after Air India expanded its flights using bank-financed jets.

While proponents claim that Ex-Im “supports” jobs, a recent Congressional Research Service report explained that “Subsidizing export financing merely shifts production among sectors within the economy, but does not add to the overall level of economic activity.”

Fortunately, no action is needed to close the Bank. Its charter expires June 30, 2015, so all Congress needs to do is nothing. Georgia Tea Party calls on Congress to refuse to re-authorize the Export-Import Bank, and thus end this 80-year chapter in taxpayer-funded corporate welfare.

About Georgia Tea Party, Inc.
Georgia Tea Party, Inc. is a non-partisan 501(c)(4) nonprofit advocacy group. Its mission is to impact public policy by teaching all who seek to learn, the principles and spirit of individual liberty and constitutionally-limited self-government. Its objectives are: 1. To teach the principles of individual liberty and limited government as described in the nation’s founding documents, the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution. 2. To inform the public about current issues from a perspective of individual liberty and limited, constitutional government. 3. To train and organize individuals to involve themselves in the political process and to address public policy issues with their elected officials. For more information, visit the website: www.georgiateaparty.org.