Text of Gov. Nathan Deal's State of the State address delivered on January 11, 2017.
The New Year is upon us and each new year brings the General Assembly back into session. This time is a critical time for each city official—elected or appointed—to make an effort to educate these well-intended individuals with the issues that impact cities and how we can work together for solutions.
Georgia’s rural healthcare system is in crisis. This is not just a rural problem or a medical problem; it is a problem for all Georgians.
A well-run municipal court enhances public safety and improves the overall quality of life within a city. A poorly run municipal court can cost a municipality in both reputation and revenue. Which one does your city have?
Our message to those in our prison system and to their families is this: If you pay your dues to society, if you take advantage of the opportunities to better yourself, if you discipline yourself so that you can regain your freedom and live by the rules of society, you will be given the chance to reclaim your life. I intend for Georgia to continue leading the nation with meaningful justice reform.
Each day brings new ideas, thoughts and sometimes opportunities. When you look at the many and varied issues affecting our cities, it is amazing that residents get the service and protection they expect and deserve. For most residents, this probably looks like a duck on a pond, placidly floating along. What they don’t see are the feet underwater paddling away.
While few of us will have an Olympic athlete from our hometown, the fact is our cities and towns play an important part in the lives of our citizens. For some, what we do as city officials directly impacts their ability to create a better future for themselves.
We must acknowledge and applaud the leaders who recognize that additional training is needed to address the everyday demands of city government.
As local officials our job is simple … it is to lead. Whether we are loud or quiet, high energy or laid back, pragmatic or idealistic, in the weeds or at 30,000 feet, our job is to get our ideas into play. If we’re not doing that, we aren’t leading.
To transform our neighborhoods and communities, it is up to us as city officials to live and act and conduct our politics in a way that honors collaboration and the common good. And from what I’ve seen and experienced these last ten years, Georgia’s city officials are up to the task.
Unless a city has an abandoned rail line or river corridor through the middle of town, a trail to the square requires repurposing public rights-of-way and piecing together underutilized parking lots and alleyways or converting “grayways” to greenways.
In the U.S., we have reduced the number of smokers, the number of teen pregnancies and the number of new HIV/AIDS infections over time. The lessons from these public health challenges can be applied to the present opioid drug epidemic.
Small cities in the Southeast act as nerve centers connecting the regional economy. In the South, more than 100 small metro areas are home to 25 million—or 20 percent—of the region’s total population.
Workforce housing is a particularly acute problem in high-growth communities, like Sandy Springs, where land values and housing costs are high and rising.
At the Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA), we know that it takes many people working together to build a strong and vibrant community. No one person, program or initiative can do it alone.