Official Opinions

Opinion In Reference To

Absent a constitutional amendment, a program to assess the testing of equines for equine infectious anemia cannot be established under the authority of the Georgia Agricultural Commodities Promotion Act or through statutory amendment thereto.


Insurance companies which are exempt from federal taxation pursuant to Section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code are subject to premium tax liability unless specifically exempted.


Updating of crimes and offenses for which the Georgia Crime Information Center is authorized to collect and file identifying data.


Updating of crimes and offenses for which the Georgia Crime Information Center is authorized to collect and file identifying data.


Updating of crimes and offenses for which the Georgia Crime Information Center is authorized to collect and file identifying data.


The City of Atlanta may charge the Board of Regents for permitting a fiber optic cable to lie under city owned streets.


A person employed in Georgia who has been penalized for being absent from work for the purpose of attending a judicial proceeding in another state under the conditions set forth in O.C.G.A. § 34-1-3 has a civil cause of action against the employer. Official Code of Georgia Annotated § 34-1-3 does not create a separate criminal offense.


Flood insurance premiums collected by private insurance companies pursuant to the National Flood Insurance Program are not subject to municipal and county taxes as provided in O.C.G.A. § 33-8-8.2(a).


The authority to sit on various state boards may not be delegated to a Deputy Commissioner of Insurance, unless the statute creating the appropriate board provides for a designee.


A public relations agreement whereby a private company permanently acquires the preeminent right to associate its name commercially with the property of the state violates the "joint ownership" prohibition of the Georgia Constitution.


When a public agency is assembling more than one parcel of real property for a public project, records relative to that "transaction" and "property" as a whole are exempt from public inspection under O.C.G.A. § 50-18-72(a)(6) until all the property to be acquired is acquired or is abandoned or terminated from the project.


Request for an Official Interpretation of O.C.G.A. § 43-9-16(b).


Authority of local governments to require contractors licensed by the state to obtain liability insurance or code compliance bonds.


The Department of Children and Youth Services is eligible to receive tuition grants for disabled students whose Individualized Education Programs place them in private residential programs for educational reasons. When the student is committed to the Department of Children and Youth Services pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 49-4A-8, the educational agency responsible for providing a free and appropriate public education under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act is either the Department or the local school district in which the student resides.


Unless otherwise exempted or excluded, contested cases not presided over by the agency head or board or body which is the ultimate decision maker are to be conducted by the Office of State Administrative Hearings.


Constitutional limitations on power of the Board of Pardons and Paroles to consider inmates for parole.


Implantation of microchips in animals for identification purposes does not constitute the practice of veterinary medicine.


Local boards of education are not authorized by statute to provide transportation to students for extracurricular activities by leasing vehicles for that use.


No attorney-client relationship exists between individuals who are attorneys and employed by an executive agency and other agency officers and employees.


Members of the State Transportation Board who travel out of state to attend meetings of the State Transportation Board or its committees are entitled to the same daily expense allowance as provided members of the General Assembly for out-of-state travel.


The Georgia Public Service Commission's jurisdiction over radio common carriers offering Domestic Public Land Mobile Radio Service has been partially preempted by the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993. The Commission still retains jurisdiction over carriers offering Rural Radio Service.


The Georgia Public Service Commission's jurisdiction over radio common carriers offering Domestic Public Land Mobile Radio Service has been partially preempted by the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993. The Commission still retains jurisdiction over carriers offering Rural Radio Service.


Appropriations of state funds to the Department of Defense which are not spent or committed by written contract lapse at the end of the fiscal year notwithstanding the provision for a continuing "military fund" in O.C.G.A. § 38-2-170; non-appropriated donations to the Department of Defense and armory rentals do not lapse.


The current hearing officers for the Department of Transportation may continue in their present capacity as hearing officers under the express language of Ga. Laws 1994, p. 1856, § 5 until April 1, 1995.


A company or group which has obtained a certificate of authority to operate a self-insurance program from the Commissioner of Insurance is a regulated entity under O.C.G.A. § 21-5-30.1. Companies, which are not insurance companies but which provide services similar to insurance such as that provided by motor clubs, are not regulated entities, where the Commissioner of Insurance exercises no statutory control or regulation over the entity.


The project for real property acquisitions from the Resolution Trust Corporation for the Multifamily Affordable Housing Program is a project within the powers of the Georgia Housing and Finance Authority to undertake.


Funds held by banks to pay outstanding certified and official checks are not subject to service charges before being reported as unclaimed property.


Election of non-public board members by the Regional Development Center Board of Directors.


O.C.G.A. § 21-5-43 limits local labor unions which are "established, financed, maintained, or controlled" by the same labor organization to making contributions for any one candidate not to exceed the total aggregate maximum contribution provided for in that Code Section; whether any such local unions are deemed to be so affiliated with one labor organization is a question to be determined on a case by case basis.


Georgia Ports Authority information, meeting the definition of a trade secret under the Georgia Trade Secrets Act, is not exempt from disclosure under the Georgia Open Records Act, although trade secret information obtained from third parties may be exempt from disclosure.


A college may not rely absolutely on a contractual provision in a dormitory contract to conduct a search of a student's dormitory room in the absence of a valid warrant or consent.


Request of Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company for Approval of Domestic Partnership Coverage.


Use of a Telephonic Conference for a Regular Meeting of the Commission, Compliance with the Open Meetings Act, and the Requirement for a Quorum.


Federal HOME Regulations prohibit a former member of the Board of Directors of the Georgia Housing and Finance Authority from participating in or benefitting from financial programs of the Authority for a period of one year and further prohibit such participation in HOME Programs of other participating jurisdictions.


A person who, as part of a refinancing transaction, signs a land survey affidavit in which the person makes certain affirmations about an existing survey of property owned by that person in order to induce a title insurance company to issue a title insurance policy to the lender is not practicing as a land surveyor in violation of O.C.G.A. § 43-15-7(b).


General Assembly approval is required for the Board of Regents to acquire a county technical institute and convert such institute to a public college.


The appropriate use of bond proceeds and savings generated by bond refundings conducted in accordance with Art. IX, Sec. V, Para. III of the Georgia Constitution.


There is no statutory basis on which the Georgia Public Service Commission can exercise jurisdiction over cellular telecommunication services as either a radio service or public telephone service.


Loans made by the Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority to local governments pursuant to the 1983 Georgia Constitution, Article IX, Section III, Paragraph I (the Intergovernmental Contracts Clause), are not subject to the debt limitations of Article IX, Section V, Paragraph I of the Georgia Constitution.


The State Board of Registration of Used Car Dealers may not accept surplus line insurance in lieu of the surety bond required by O.C.G.A. § 43-47-8(h).


O.C.G.A. § 33-36-3(2)(I) excludes from the definition of "covered claims" which must be paid by the Georgia Insurers Insolvency Pool unearned premiums on an insurance policy resulting from a completed audit.


Persons licensed pursuant to the Liquefied Petroleum Safety Act of Georgia who install, repair or service conditioned air equipment are not exempt from the requirement of holding a license as a conditioned air contractor.


Resolution Act 62 is permissive and does not mandate that the State Properties Commission provide an easement across Black Rock Mountain State Park to the Sylvan Lake Falls Homeowners' Association and, if the easement is granted, the determination as to whether the lower riparian owners are affected is a fact question.


Applicability of Fair and Open Grants Act of 1993 to Funds Expended from the State Public Transportation Fund.


The Fair and Open Grants Act ("FOGA")


Act No. 538, adopted in the 1993 session, will allow an agent of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation who is eligible for involuntary separation retirement benefits to elect retirement or to continue his or her employment past the age of 55 and be entitled to the same projection in age and service which would have been available when that agent was required to retire at age 55 by operation of law. The 95% rule of O.C.G.A. § 47-2-124 does not apply to the calculation of retirement benefits under Act No. 538.


Referring patients for Magnetic Resonance Imaging is not within the scope of practice of chiropractors in the State of Georgia.


A private, nonprofit corporation that is leasing and operating health care facilities on behalf of a hospital authority may not self-insure its workers' compensation liability as an "entity" of the authority.


The sale of goods, wares or other objects, when incidental and collateral to free speech activity otherwise permitted in a designated public forum, may not be prohibited under the Buildings and Grounds Policies of the Georgia Building Authority or O.C.G.A. § 50-9-9(b), but is subject to reasonable time, place and manner regulation.


Appropriated state funds which become deobligated during a subsequent fiscal year are subject to lapse, and may not be applied to contracts for which motor fuel tax appropriations were previously committed.