Who are my legislators? An excellent source for finding out who your elected officials are is www.votesmart.org. You will need your nine-digit zip code but instructions for determining the nine-digit zip code are included. The website provides contact information for all of your elected officials, including your state representative and state senator. Detailed information about individual legislators is also available on the web at www.legis.ga.gov.
Who is on what committee? This information is available at www.legis.ga.gov.* You can find information about committee assignments for individual House and Senate members, or you can look up information by committee.
When is a committee meeting? For the House, go to www.legis.ga.gov , click on the House of Representatives link at the top of the page, then on the Meetings Calendar link on the left. For the Senate, go to www.legis.ga.gov , click on the State Senate link at the top of the page, then click on the Committees link at the top of the page, and on the Senate Committee web page, click on the Committee Meeting Schedule link on the left.
Some committees adhere to a daily or weekly schedule when the Legislature is in session, although meetings are often postponed or scheduled on short notice. Most meeting notices are posted outside the offices of the House Clerk and Secretary of the Senate. If you are trying to closely monitor the activity of a specific committee, your best bet is to check with the committee secretary on a daily basis.
For a copy of a bill, go to www.legis.ga.gov and click on the Legislation link at the top of the page. If you know the bill number, you can easily find the legislation. There is also a search option that allows you to search by legislator name, committee, Georgia Code section, or by using key words. If you are still having trouble, you can call the Clerk of the House at 404-656-5015 or the Secretary of the Senate at 404-656-5040.You will need to know the title or description of the bill.
To contact a legislator, addresses, phone numbers and email addresses are available at www.legis.ga.gov.*
When you are at the Capitol and the Legislature is in session, you can send a message to a legislator in the House or Senate chamber. Page desks are located outside each chamber and forms are located in the south lobby outside the Senate and the House. Legislators are not always at their desks, so sometimes you must send a message in more than once. If you want to meet with your own legislator, it sometimes helps to call ahead of time and let him or her know that you will be at the Capitol that day. Legislators are more accessible to their own constituents, so if you live in the district, be sure to let him or her know.
General Assembly Schedule: In the past, both the House and Senate convened at 10:00 a.m. most days. In recent years the House and Senate have often had an afternoon starting time on Mondays. Also, the House and Senate may begin at an earlier hour in the later weeks of the session. Committee meetings are usually held in the afternoon, particularly during the first month or so. Many legislators keep office hours from about 9:00 a.m. until the House/Senate convene and then again in the afternoon. The most important thing to remember, though, is that the schedule is set each day and is always subject to change.
*An important reference tool in previous years was Members of the Georgia General Assembly, often referred to as the “Picture Book” or “White Book.” Until the 2010 session it was updated yearly and was available in print from the House Clerk and Secretary of the Senate offices and online. It has not been available online or in print since the 2009 session. It is hoped that this invaluable reference tool for advocates and the public will be available for the 2013 Session.
The 2013 Session will begin on January 14, 2013.