January 2012, Vol.6, No.1 Past issues | Printer Friendly | Advertise | eMagazine Archives

Two new immigration requirements took effect on January 1st as a result of the passage of HB 87 during the 2011 legislative session.

The first requirement calls for any person seeking a public benefit through the county to present a secure and verifiable document. It further requires anyone who is required to present identification to the county for any official purpose to present a secure and verifiable document.

A list of acceptable secure and verifiable documents is provided on the Attorney General’s website. This means that anyone who applies for a public benefit through a county must now not only submit a SAVE affidavit, but they must also present a secure and verifiable document. Although counties may accept affidavits in person, electronically or by mail, secure and verifiable documents can only be submitted in person or electronically and cannot be accepted by mail.

The second requirement calls for private employers with 500 or more employees seeking an occupation tax certificate (business license) or any other document required to operate a business with the county to register for and use E-Verify and to sign an E-Verify affidavit. This requirement is completely separate from the public contractor E-Verify affidavit. The private employer requirement will be phased in through July 1, 2013.  Private employers with more than 100 employees must be registered beginning on July 1, 2012 and employers with more than 10 employees must be registered beginning on July 1, 2013. Private employers that are not subject to this requirement must sign an exemption affidavit.

The exemption affidavit and the private employer affidavit can be found on the Attorney General’s website.  ACCG and GMA have also created a combined affidavit that may be easier to use, which is on our respective websites. It is strongly recommended that you consult with your county attorney prior to using these affidavits. The information collected in these affidavits will be included in a report due to the Department of Audits and Accounts on December 31, 2012 and by that date for each subsequent year. This annual report will include each license or certificate issued by the county in the previous 12 months including the name of the person and business issued a license or other document and their E-Verify number as provided in the Private Employer E-Verify Affidavit. This report is separate from the E-Verify Contractor Report that must also be submitted to the Department of Audits and Accounts annually on that date.

For more information on illegal immigration reform requirements, please visit the ACCG website.
If you have questions about these requirements, please contact your county attorney.  



The county governing authority is required to set and publish the qualifying fees for county offices (i.e., commissioners, sheriffs, tax commissioners, superior court clerks, magistrates, probate judges, state court judges, solicitors general, coroners and surveyors) by February 1, 2012.  O.C.G.A. § 21-2-131. This should be done through the adoption of a resolution by the board of commissioners setting the qualifying fee for each office. 

County Officers and Magistrates
Qualifying fees to run for the office of superior court clerk probate judge, magistrate, sheriff, and tax commissioner must be set at 3 percent of the minimum base salary specified in state law for each county based on the county’s 2010 population. See O.C.G.A. §§ 15-6-88(a) for superior court clerks, 15-9-63(a)(1) for probate judges, 15-10-23(a)  for magistrates, 15-16-20(a)(1) for sheriffs, and 48-5-183(b)(1) for tax commissioners.

Note that in calculating the qualifying fee for the county officers and magistrates, the minimum base salary is not to be adjusted to reflect supplements, cost-of-living increases or longevity increases.

County Commissioners and Chairs
Qualifying fees to run for the office of members of the county governing authority other than sole commissioners must be set at 3 percent of the base salary established by local legislation unless the commissioners have set a higher salary using their home rule authority (see below).
Qualifying fees to run for sole commissioner is 3 percent of the salary set by local legislation or by the state minimum salary law for sole commissioners (O.C.G.A. §  36-5-25), whichever is applicable.

In those counties where the commissioners or sole commissioner, have exercised home rule power to increase their compensation pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 36-5-24, the qualifying fee is 3 percent of whichever salary is higher. 

As with the county officers and magistrates, the base for commissioners is not adjusted to reflect training or other compensation supplements beyond the base.

All Other Elected County Offices
Qualifying fees to run for the office of coroner, surveyor or school board member is 3 percent of the total gross salary of the office paid in 2011, including all supplements authorized by law. If the elected official is not paid a salary, the commissioner must set a fee that is not more than 3 percent of the income that the elected official earned from the office in 2011.

State Officials.  Qualifying fees for state officials (e.g., legislators, superior court judges, district attorneys) are set by the Georgia Secretary of State.

For more information, please contact the Elections Division of the Secretary of State’s office at 404-656-2871.


WEBINAR - Workplace Wellness Policy: A How To Guide for Local Governments 
Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2012
10 - 11 a.m. 

LGRMS Health Promotion Services presents:

Learn how workplace wellness policies help build a culture of wellness towards enhancing employee health.

The webinar will focus on several topics of interest to members creating or enhancing workplace health promotion and wellness programs. This is a wonderful opportunity to get valuable information on workplace wellness policies and how they impact organizational culture.

Webinar topics to be presented include:
* Workplace Wellness Programs
* Breakdown of a Policy
* Real Examples from Members
(Webinar topics are subject to change)

*Webinar is free to Members of ACCG Group Health Benefits Program (GHBP).

Register here

Benefits Administrators' Workshop

This training is designed to provide new and experienced Benefits Administrators and their Supervisors with detailed information about the ACCG/BCBSGA Health Program, product options and services.


January 10, 2012 — Cordele/Crisp County
2459 Hwy 280 West, Cordele, GA  31015
Lake Blackshear Resort in Ga. Veterans Memorial State Park

January 11, 2012 — Statesboro/Bulloch County
Holiday Inn
455 Commerce Drive, Statesboro, GA  30461

January 12, 2012 — Canton / Cherokee County
Cherokee County Bridge Mill Fire Station #22
9550 Bells Ferry Road, Canton, GA  30114

• Health Care Reform – Important Compliance Requirements
• Must Learn: New BCBSGa enrollment and claims administration system
• Medicare Rx news
• ACCG Wellness Grants
• Changes in ACCG/BCBSGa’s Inmate Medical Program
• Details on Inmate catastrophic stop-loss policy

Learn about the implementation of the new enrollment and claims systems.  Meet BCBS representatives who work with eligibility, enrollment changes, COBRA, HIPAA, and billing systems on a daily basis. 

This program is designed for county staff responsible for the day-to-day operations of county health insurance plans:  Benefit Administrators, Benefit Clerks, Personnel Directors, Finance and Budget Managers, Wellness/Health Benefits Coordinators, and all other local government officials interested in managing their county’s health insurance program.

*The workshop is FREE to all county and BCBS staff. 

Register (pdf)


Mid Georgia Ambulance

Association County Commissioners of Georgia
2013-2014 ACCG Board of Managers

Association County Commissioners of Georgia
50 Hurt Plaza, Suite 1000 | Atlanta, GA 30303
phone: 404-522-5022 | fax: 404-525-2477 | ACCG.org

We would appreciate your comments or suggestions. Your email will be kept private and confidential.

Courthouse photos courtesy of the Carl Vinson Institute of Government, University of Georgia.