Author

Jill Nolin

Jill Nolin

Jill Nolin has spent nearly 15 years reporting on state and local government in four states, focusing on policy and political stories and tracking public spending. She has spent the last five years chasing stories in the halls of Georgia’s Gold Dome, earning recognition for her work showing the impact of rising opioid addiction on the state’s rural communities. She is a graduate of Troy University.

State Senators poised to act on bill to limit burning crossties for energy

By: - February 26, 2020

Gerry Wilson is frustrated with the smell, noise and ash coming from a wood-burning plant near her home in rural Franklin County that is feeding its furnace chemically treated railroad ties. But the retired school teacher is most worried about what she can’t see. “It’s heart breaking to live on land and think you need […]

Juliette residents leave Capitol frustrated by coal ash politics

By: - February 25, 2020

Gini Seitz is a lifelong resident of conservative Monroe County who identifies as a Republican, and yet there she was Monday, standing in the halls of the Gold Dome advocating passionately for a Democratic proposal. Seitz was among the dozens of Juliette residents who live near Plant Scherer who boarded charter buses with jugs of […]

Emergency water trucked to community fearing coal ash toxins

By: and - February 24, 2020

JULIETTE, Ga. — Heather Ethridge has been doling out money for bottled water and refilling jugs for months. The extra money and hassle beats the alternative: Drinking the contaminated water flowing from her well in Juliette. That’s why the 600-gallon tank of water that appeared outside the downtown Juliette fire station Thursday was a welcome […]

Bill proposes tough penalties for neglect at senior care homes

By: - February 21, 2020

A group of Georgia lawmakers is pushing for more staffing, higher penalties and other safeguards meant to address alarming shortcomings found at some state-regulated assisted living facilities and personal care homes. One measure, sponsored by Rep. Chuck Efstration, seeks to ensure that coroners are notified when a resident dies unexpectedly at a long-term care facility. That […]

Proposed hefty fines for unbuckled child car passengers slows bill’s roll

By: - February 20, 2020

A push to require all passengers in a vehicle traveling Georgia’s roadways to buckle up crashed into concerns Wednesday that the proposed penalties were a bit too harsh. Today, a driver or front-seat passenger can pick up a $15 citation for being unsecured, but a Senate bill would expand the law to all occupants in […]

Bill to curb medical ‘surprise billing’ squeaks out of health committee

By: - February 19, 2020

A plan to curb some of the unexpected medical bills showing up in Georgia mailboxes narrowly cleared a key committee on Tuesday after some high-profile lawmakers suggested the measure comes up short. The proposal seeks to target the so-called “surprise billing” issue that has dogged Georgia lawmakers for at least five years under the Gold […]

Gracie’s Law aims to protect organ access for Georgians with disabilities

By: - February 17, 2020

Gracie Joy Nobles is a lively 11-month baby with Down syndrome whose ability to breeze past expectations is a constant source of amazement for her parents. But when Gracie needed heart surgery seven months ago, parents Erin and David Nobles stumbled across a disturbing truth – that a stranger’s dim view of Gracie’s potential could […]

Georgia grocery stores’ lobbyist pokes at proposed plastic bag ban

By: - February 12, 2020

A proposal to ban the use of plastic bags at grocery stores and other retailers had a public airing Wednesday at the Gold Dome. The Senate bill, sponsored by Sen. Donzella James, an Atlanta Democrat, drew support from environmentalists who warned of the harm the growing waste stream has on wildlife and human health. But […]

Planned cuts to state health spending projected as campaign fodder

By: - February 12, 2020

Georgia Democrats gave a preview of the political sparring to come at a Tuesday press conference held to decry Republican Gov. Brian Kemp’s proposed budget cuts, particularly to health care. “The reality is that the budget is a value proposition for those who are in power,” state Rep. James Beverly, who chairs the House Democratic […]

Bottled water and blood tests: Coal ash fears grow near Plant Scherer

By: - February 7, 2020

JULIETTE, Ga. —John Dupree and his family of seven switched to bottled water a few weeks ago over fears that the water flowing from their faucet could be loaded with dangerous toxins. A recent at-home test confirmed he has reason to worry: It showed excessive levels of hexavalent chromium, which is a known carcinogen at […]

Clock ticking on Georgia Power plan for unlined coal ash storage

By: - February 4, 2020

When Plant Harllee Branch near Milledgeville shut down in 2015 after more than five decades of generating energy from coal, it was anyone’s guess what Georgia Power might do with the millions of cubic yards of toxic coal ash left behind. There were a few options being weighed at the time: recycle it, excavate and […]

Kemp wants death penalty in anti-gang law amid public defender cuts

By: - January 31, 2020

A murder suspect accused of violating Georgia’s anti-gang laws could face the death penalty under a yet-to-be-filed bill backed by Gov. Brian Kemp. That’s one of the proposed changes included in the latest round of the Republican governor’s push to make good on the crackdown he promised on the campaign trail back in 2018 in […]