Georgia House of Representatives - House District 179
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Rep. Alex Atwood Qualifies for Reelection
BRUNSWICK - State Representative Alex Atwood (R-St. Simons) formally announced his intention to seek a second term in the Georgia House of Representatives. Alex Atwood started his service in the Georgia House on January 2011, representing the citizens of House District 179 which encompasses parts of Glynn County, Brunswick, St. Simons Island and Jekyll Island. Representative Atwood currently serves on the Judiciary (non-civil), Insurance, and Audits and Information committees, and was recently elected to serve as the Vice-Chair of the newly formed 1st Congressional District Delegation.
"It has indeed been a tremendous honor and privilege for me to represent the people of House District 179," said Rep. Atwood. "Since being elected, I have worked diligently to be as accessible as possible to the citizens of my District, and if elected I will continue to provide a conservative, respectful and conscientious voice for all the citizens at the State Capitol."
Rep. Atwood graduated from Georgia State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminal Justice. He went on to earn his Masters of Arts degree in International Relations, followed by a Juris Doctorate in Law (Cum Laude).
Rep. Atwood spent his early professional years serving first in local law enforcement, followed by service as a Special Agent with the federal government. At the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, Rep. Atwood successfully led all legal training for literally thousands of law enforcement officers and agents.
Prior to being selected as a Glynn County Magistrate Judge, Rep. Atwood served as Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel for Alpha Protective Services, Inc., a 700-employee Georgia-based security company providing security for federal government installations throughout the United States and for the National Football League.
Rep. Atwood also served for 34 years in the United States Marine Corps Reserve in both ground and aviation positions. He initially enlisted as a private. In 1982, as a Captain, Rep. Atwood was selected by the Commandant of the Marine Corps in a national competition as the Marine Reserve Outstanding Junior Officer of the Year. Rep. Atwood retired at the rank of full Colonel.
In addition to serving as a Magistrate Judge and a practicing attorney, Alex has also served as a member of the United States Attorneys Committee for Project Safe Neighborhood, as an Adjunct Professor at the International Law Enforcement Academy in Budapest, Hungary, and as a member of the Legal Advisors Section to the International Association of Chiefs of Police.
In 2010, Representative Atwood was nominated to be a Fellow of the Lawyers Foundation of Georgia. This honor is extended to those few attorneys whose public and private careers demonstrate outstanding legal abilities and a devotion to their communities. Only four percent of the active members of the State Bar of Georgia are selected as Fellows.
Rep. Atwood is the Senior Partner of the Atwood Law Firm, PC, with offices in Atlanta and Brunswick. He is a member of the Chamber of Commerce, former President of the Glynn County Bar Association, member of the Military Officers Association of America, as well as several other civic and fraternal organizations, and has served on the Vestry of Christ Church, St. Simons Island.
Rep. Atwood is the proud father of three children, Melonie, James and Cameron. He has been married for 24 happy years to Cynthia Atwood. The Atwood's reside on St. Simons Island, Georgia.
Dear Representative Atwood:
On behalf of the American Conservative Union Foundation, I am pleased to inform you that you are a winner of the Defender of Liberty Award for 2012. This is in recognition of your perfect score of 100% on ACU's first-ever ratings for the Georgia General Assembly. It reflects your outstanding support of conservative principles on a wide range of issues during the 2012 session.
Your award will be presented at a reception on Tuesday, July 10, 2012 from 11am to 12:30pm in the South Wing of the State Capitol and Room 216. ACU Chairman Al Cardenas and a photographer will be on hand to mark the occasion. Press will be invited to this event. You can come by at any time between 11am and 12:30pm to receive your award. We look forward to having you join us!
Director of Government Relations
American Conservative Union
Rep. Atwood Receives American Conservation Union Foundation's Defender of Liberty Award
Rep. Alex Atwood Makes Georgians Aware of New Driverís License Requirements
July 12, 2012
ATLANTA - State Representative Alex Atwood (R-Brunswick) responded to the concerns of numerous constituents who reached out to him by working to make Georgians aware of federally mandated requirements that forced the Georgia Department of Driver Services (DDS) to begin requiring new documentation for obtaining and renewing driverís licenses. Under new federally mandated SAFFE DL (Secure Automated Fast Friendly Easier Driverís License) Program that went into effect on July 1, Georgians wishing to renew their driverís license must provide documentation proving their identity, full legal name, current residential address, and social security number.
ďIt is my hope that by helping to make the citizens of my district aware of this new one-time process, which heightens security in driverís license issuance and renewal, it will prove less burdensome in the license application process, at airport screening checkpoints, and for those citizens wishing to enter federal facilities,Ē said Rep. Atwood.
The SAFFE DL program is mandated by the Federal Real ID Act of 2005. Under this federal law, Georgia driverís licenses and identifications must meet upcoming federal requirements for air travel security screenings and entry into federal buildings. Congress passed the Federal Real ID Act in response to the 9/11 Commissionís recommendations. The federal act prohibits the federal government from accepting driverís licenses/IDs issued by non-compliant states to board commercial flights or enter federal buildings.
In compliance with the Federal Real ID Act, as of July 1, 2012, anyone needing to apply for their first driverís license or renew an expiring existing driverís license must visit a DDS Customer Service Center in person. As a part of the new protocol, customers must also prove their identity and full legal name, Social Security Number (SSN), and residential address. Once Georgia drivers have met these requirements, they will not have to repeat the process for subsequent renewals.
Customers may prove their identity and full legal name by providing either an original or certified copy of their U.S. birth certificate, a valid U.S. passport, or Certificate of Citizenship or other immigration form.
To prove their full SSN, customers must bring either their Social Security card, W-2 form with their full SSN, paycheck showing their name and full SSN, or documentation from the Social Security Administration displaying their name and full SSN.
Customers may prove their residential address by providing any two of the following: mortgage payment, deed or property tax, health insurance statement, Medicare or Medicaid statement, Paycheck/paystub, letter from employer, W2 from current or previous year, school record for the current and previous school year, income tax return for current or previous year, most recent utility bill, current rental contract/receipts for rent payment, or a recent bank statement.
For customers who are unable to obtain the mandatory documentation before their driverís licenses or IDs are due to expire, DDS will issue an interim driverís license/ID for 120 days to allow time to gather the necessary information.
All fees for obtaining and renewing driverís licenses/IDs remain the same despite these new security requirements.
Existing driverís licenses and IDs will remain valid until their expiration date. Georgians may continue to use their current Georgia driverís licenses and IDs as an acceptable form of identification, for boarding a commercial flight, and for entering federal buildings until the driverís license or ID expires.
The new SAFFE DL program benefits customers by providing additional security, insuring the integrity of their identification, and helping protection against identity theft.
For more information on Georgiaís changes relating to the Department of Driver Services, please visit www.dds.ga.gov/SecureID. You can also contact the DDS Customer contact center at (678) 413-8400, or (866) 754-3687.
House Bill 164 Authored by Rep. Atwood Heads to Governor
March 21. 2013
ATLANTA - House Bill 164, introduced by State Representative Alex Atwood (R-Brunswick), received final passage in the Senate on Wednesday, March 20, 2013, and will now go to the Governor for consideration. HB 164 would extend an existing sales tax exemption for aviation parts used to repair and maintain out-of-state airplanes that is scheduled to automatically expire on July 1, 2013.
ďHB 164 was thoroughly vetted in both the House and Senate,Ē said Rep. Atwood. ďI am truly grateful to my all my House colleagues and the Georgia senators for recognizing the true benefit of this legislation in promoting the development of the aviation industry and associated jobs in Glynn County and throughout the state of Georgia.Ē
House Bill 164 extends the expiration date to July 1, 2015, for a state law that exempts engines, parts, equipment, or other personal property used in the maintenance or repair of out-of-state aircraft from Georgiaís sale and use taxes. In the six years since its original enactment, the exemption has successfully bolstered the aviation service industry and created jobs in Atlanta, Macon, Augusta, Savannah, and Brunswick, as well as other parts of the state.
Other states, including Florida and Alabama, have enacted similar tax exemptions. Of the states with an active aviation industry, only three have automatic expirations for their exemptions.
Georgiaís sales and use tax exemption for aviation parts has been in effect since 2007. HB 164 would renew and extend the tax exemption for a third time.
For more information about HB 164, please click here.
Representative Alex Atwood represents the citizens of District 179, which includes portions of Glynn County. He was elected into the House of Representatives in 2010, and currently serves as the Vice Chair of Juvenile Justice, and as the Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security. He also serves on the Appropriations, Insurance, and Judiciary Non-Civil committees.
House Bills 161 and 458 Head to Governor
March 30, 2013
ATLANTA - House Bill 161 and House Bill 458, introduced by state Representative Alex Atwood (R-Brunswick), received final passage in the Senate on Monday, March 25, 2013, and will now go to the Governor for consideration. HB 161 would increase bailiff responsibilities within the courtroom, and HB 458 would reduce insurance costs for condominiums.
ďBoth bills were thoroughly vetted in both the House and Senate,Ē said Rep. Atwood. ďI am truly grateful to my all my House colleagues and the Georgia senators for recognizing the true benefit of these bills.Ē
House Bill 161 passed unanimously in the Senate, and would increase the responsibilities of the bailiff in the courtroom. This legislation was requested by the judges of the state. It rewrites and modernizes existing law associated with bailiff responsibilities and items allowed pursuant to jury trials under the authority of judges. For more information about HB 161, please click here.
House Bill 458 also passed unanimously in the Senate. This bill would reduce insurance costs for condominiums. The bill increases the minimum deductible cap imposed by the State of Georgia for condominium association insurance policies from $2500 to $5000. The current deductible cap was set by the State of Georgia prior to the 2008 recession. For more information about HB 458, please click here.
May 4, 2013 The Brunswick News -
Gov. Nathan Deal, seated, shakes hands with Gulfstream President Larry Flynn while State Rep. Alex Atwood, R- St. Simons Island, joins in applauding Deal after signing legislation Atwood sponsored to extend a sales tax exemption on airplane parts.