Update on ACCG Legislative Leadership Conference and Continuing Education Requirements for Certified Commissioners
The health and safety of county officials and the ACCG staff remain the top priority as we continue to provide service to counties in these uncertain times. After much discussion and in careful consideration of the current upward trajectory of COVID-19 positive cases in Georgia, recommended guidelines for gatherings of large groups from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Gov. Brian Kemp’s Executive Order 06.29.20.02 (which includes detailed, stringent requirements for conferences of more than 100 people), the ACCG Executive Committee has decided to transition the 2020 Legislative Leadership Conference to a virtual meeting to adopt the 2021 Policy Agenda. While the Executive Committee and staff had hoped to offer a more traditional conference, the potential risk to attendees, along with challenges associated with executing a conference usually numbering more than 250 people, in the current environment outweighs the benefits of holding it in person.
Following are some important points regarding changes in the Policy Development Process and the Lifelong Learning Academy as a result of this transition.
Policy Development Process
- The Executive Committee has approved a Policy Process During COVID-19 that will be followed up to and including the adoption of the 2021 Policy Agenda.
- The first step in this process is the Policy Committee meetings. Each of the committees will meet virtually at least one time this summer using a remote platform. The schedule for these meetings will be available by July 15.
- The Policy Council is tentatively scheduled to meet in early September to consider the recommendations from the Policy Committees. Members will still have the opportunity to propose amendments to the Policy Council.
- After the Policy Council meeting, the counties will be polled on the proposed Legislative Priorities.
- Based upon the Policy Council Report and the Legislative Priority (or Priorities), the proposed 2021 Policy Agenda will be distributed to all members with another opportunity to propose amendments. The Policy Team will hold briefings on the proposed 2021 Policy Agenda through a virtual platform.
- Each county’s delegate will vote through an electronic ballot on whether the approve the 2021 Policy Agenda and any amendments.
- ACCG will share the 2021 Policy Agenda, including the Legislative Priority (or Priorities), with the membership after the voting period has concluded.
Lifelong Learning Academy
- ACCG recognizes that many county officials are concerned about the cancellation of Lifelong Learning Academy classes, especially as it relates to the annual continuing education requirement for certified county commissioners. The Executive Committee has suspended the annual continuing education (CE) requirement for certified county commissioners (18 Hours CE per year) until some point in the future when it can be reinstituted.
- ACCG’s Leadership Development team, under the direction of Jeff Christie and Nicole Logan, are actively exploring options to offer Lifelong Learning Academy classes later this fall. Any classes offered will be conducted in accordance with federal and state requirements and CDC guidelines related to mitigating the spread of COVID-19. More details will be provided as soon as they are available.
ACCG continues to monitor the impact of COVID-19 on our state and in your local communities. While people are anxious for things to return to normal, now is not the time to let our guard down. We recognize our role in bringing people together for educational opportunities, policy development, information exchange and networking. However, we must continue to be diligent and conservative in our approach before bringing our statewide membership back together in large groups. Thank you for your understanding and continued support.