SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — Georgia officials picked up a key congressional endorsement Monday as they seek a federal study on whether the shipping channel to the Port of Savannah should be deepened again following a harbor expansion that was completed in 2022 and cost nearly $1 billion.

ATLANTA – The Atlanta Veterans Affairs Regional Office was formally renamed in honor of the late U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson Monday during a ceremony at the building in Decatur. Isakson, who died in 2021, served as chairman of the Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee from 2015 until he retired from the Senate in 2019.

OCEAN SPRINGS, Miss. (AP) — A Louisiana man has been arrested and charged in the shooting death of a Georgia man aboard a bus traveling through Mississippi. The Mississippi Bureau of Investigation said in a news release Monday that the fatal shooting happened at about 11 p.m. Sunday as the Greyhound bus was on Interstate 10 near Ocean Springs, and the suspect was captured about 3 a.m. Monday after local deputies saw him crossing the interstate.

Legislative efforts to block a proposed titanium mine near the Okefenokee Swamp have taken a new turn.

ATLANTA (AP) — A former Georgia insurance commissioner who made a failed Republican run for governor has pleaded guilty to conspiring to commit health care fraud. John W. Oxendine of Johns Creek entered the guilty plea Friday in federal court in Atlanta. The 61-year-old had been indicted in May 2022 on charges of conspiracy to commit health care fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering.

ATLANTA – Georgia’s economy continued to reach all-time highs on a number of fronts last month, the state Department of Labor reported Thursday. While Georgia’s unemployment rate remained steady at 3.1% in February, the number of jobs rose by 2,400 to a record high of more than 4.9 million.

MCRAE-HELENA, Ga. (AP) — An inmate stabbed the warden at a Georgia prison during a disturbance Wednesday and officers used tear gas to regain control, a state corrections official said. Telfair State Prison's warden, Andrew McFarlane, was not seriously injured, department spokesperson Joan Heath said.

ATLANTA – The Georgia Senate gave final passage Wednesday to a bill that would accelerate income tax cuts, sending it on to Gov. Brian Kemp for his signature. The legislation, which was proposed by the governor, will accelerate a state income tax reduction that took effect this year, rolling back the income tax rate from 5.49% to 5.39%. The bill will save Georgia taxpayers about $1.1 billion this year, Sen. Bo Hatchett, Kemp’s Senate floor leader, said before Wednesday’s vote.

ATLANTA – The state Senate gave final passage Wednesday to legislation offering private-school vouchers to Georgia students attending low-performing public schools.

ATLANTA (AP) — The ability of people to sue insurance companies directly after trucking crashes would be limited under a bill receiving final passage in the Georgia legislature. The House voted 172-0 on Monday to pass Senate Bill 426, sending it to Gov. Brian Kemp for his signature or veto. The measure says someone could only sue an insurance company directly if the trucking company involved has gone bankrupt or when the plaintiff can't find the company or the driver.

As rural hospitals continue to struggle financially, a new type of hospital is slowly taking root, especially in the Southeast.

ATLANTA — State Troopers are urging motorists to prioritize safety and avoid drinking and driving during the St. Patrick's Day weekend and spring break season. More people on the road mean a higher risk of serious accidents, especially with thousands of students traveling to spring break destinations. 

ATLANTA – Cases of COVID-19, RSV, and influenza have declined significantly as winter moves into spring, State Epidemiologist Dr. Cherie Drenzek reported Tuesday. On the fourth anniversary of the first reported death from coronavirus in Georgia, Drenzek told members of the state Board of Public Health the vast majority of patients hospitalized with the virus had not been vaccinated.

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — There was no green beer, no pickup trucks towing parade floats or throngs of tourists in gaudy green outfits. Instead, just a few dozen of Savannah's early Irish immigrants marched a half-mile from a hotel near the riverfront to attend a special service at what then was the city's only Roman Catholic church.

ATLANTA (AP) — Voters in a Georgia state House district near Augusta have chosen a county commissioner to fill a vacancy created when the former representative stepped down to become a judge. In state House District 125, Columbia County Commissioner Gary Richardson of Evans beat conservative commentator C.J. Pearson of Grovetown on Tuesday, with Richardson winning about 60% of the vote with all precincts reporting, according to unofficial results.

RICHMOND HILL, Ga. — Firearm components manufacturer C&H Precision broke ground last week on a 50,000-square-foot multipurpose building near Savannah in Richmond Hill, where the company said it expects to roughly triple its current local workforce of 35 employees after completion in 2025.

KENNESAW, Ga. — More than 200 faith leaders, elected officials, leaders in business and education, and concerned citizens will gather on April 18 for the 3rd annual Freedom of Religion Roundtable to discuss the legal, social, and political trends surrounding religious liberty in Georgia.

ATLANTA – Georgia tax collections continued to fall last month, and even the gasoline sales tax failed to lift the state out of the red. Net tax receipts in February totaled more than $2.03 billion, down 4.3% compared to the same month last year.

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia would strengthen penalties against false reports of shootings and bomb threats at homes, known as swatting, under a bill passed Monday by the state House. The measure would also define a drive-by shooting as a separate crime.

ATLANTA (AP) — Naomi Barber King, a civil rights activist who was married to the younger brother of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., has died at age 92. She died in Atlanta on Thursday, according to family members who issued a statement through the A.D. King Foundation.

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia House Republicans are backing a bill that would require every eligible police and sheriff’s department to help identify undocumented immigrants and detain them for possible deportation. The House voted 97-74 on Thursday for House Bill 1105 after police accused a Venezuelan man of beating a nursing student to death on the University of Georgia campus. The measure moves to the state Senate for more debate.

ATLANTA (AP) — Some Georgia senators want to punish cities and counties that they say are illegally harboring immigrants who are in the country without permission by cutting off most state aid to the local government and removing elected officials from office.

The first confirmed baby right whale of the year has been found dead from a collision with a ship, a devastating blow for the vanishing species. North Atlantic right whales number less than 360 and they are vulnerable to ship strikes and entanglement in fishing gear. Federal authorities were notified of a dead right whale stranded off Georgia on Sunday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said.

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia's 2024 elections kicked into high gear Monday with the start of qualifying for state and federal offices. Dozens of candidates from the Republican and Democratic parties streamed to the state Capitol to sign papers and pay their qualifying fees, while those running for nonpartisan posts and as independents lined up across the street to qualify with the secretary of state's office. Candidates have until noon Friday to sign up.

SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) — A federal agency is asserting legal rights to waters that feed the Okefenokee Swamp and its vast wildlife refuge, setting up a new battle with a mining company seeking permits to withdraw more than 1.4 million gallons daily for a project that critics say could irreparably harm one of America's natural treasures.

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