Just as an audience once applauded the notoriously long-winded Bill Clinton when he said "in conclusion" near the end of a stem-winder, most Georgia citizens should cheer the end of the legislative session.
In a testament to the underwhelming lack of activity, Senate President Pro-Tem Eric Johnson was quoted as saying, "It is hard to call this session a resounding success."
Still, the failure of some major but ill-advised election-year proposals - including the GREAT plan - should count as success.
Columbia County's Chamber of Commerce, in a pre-legislative breakfast in December, scored a coup by bringing in House Speaker Glen Richardson to discuss GREAT. Though it had some good elements, it would have turned over control for local taxation to the state - a factor that drew opposition from local governments.
The ever-changing proposal failed, as did a smaller, Johnny-come-lately tax-cutting plan on the state Senate side.
In the end, while citizens won't see any tax relief this year, local governments also won't be struggling to cut services because of state mandates. Tax cuts undoubtedly are coming, however, so all local governments should take the session's inaction not as the end of the debate, but simply as buying time to get their affairs in order.
Meanwhile, Columbia County's Chamber will score another coup May 22 if it's able to bring Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle to town for the post-legislative breakfast.
For information on the event, contact the Chamber at (706) 651-0018.
The Columbia County News-Times ©2013. All Rights Reserved.