Gwinnett lawmaker presses pause on controversial bills – FOX 5 Atlanta


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Published November 16, 2021 5: 00PM Updated 5: 31PM State Senator pulls bill to expand Gwinnett Board State Sen. Clint Dixon, R-Buford, on Tuesday withdrew two bills he introduced that would nearly double the size of the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners and would make the Gwinnett County School Board non-partisan. Sen. Dixon said he will spend the next couple of months to get feedback from the community. ATLANTA - State Sen. Clint Dixon, R-Buford, announced Tuesday he would not move forward with two pieces of legislation that would alter the structure of Gwinnett County's government during the special session. Sen. Dixon decided to pull Senate Bills EX 5 and EX 6 from the Senate's general calendar. SB EX 6 would double the size of the Gwinnett County Board of Commissioners from 5 members to 10 and redraw the commission district lines. SB EX 5 would make Gwinnett County's school board elections non-partisan. Currently, the board is comprised of three Democrats and two Republicans. "I've come to realize there's a bigger issue than just Gwinnett County in regards to non-partisan school boards," explained Sen. Dixon. "Currently there are 61% of the school districts in the State of Georgia are non-partisan."   Sen. Dixon said he planned to hold a series of town halls in Gwinnett County and around the state to hear public feedback on the issue. Senate committee approved bill to expand Gwinnett County State officials are considering a bill that would expand the number of Gwinnett County Commissioners from five to ten. "My intent is to spend the next six weeks hearing from parents, educators and children across the state as we examine non-partisan boards of education.  The education of our children should be a non-partisan issue.  Let's get politics out of our schools and once again focus on educating our children," said Sen. Dixon. "While D.C. politicians and radical agendas try to invade the classroom with [Critical Race Theory], comprehensive sex ed and other radical curricula, trying to indoctrinate our children, my focus will be on ensuring students catch up from post-COVID pandemic, schools that have been shut down." WHAT IS CRITICAL RACE THEORY? State Rep. Sam Park, D-Lawrenceville, who serves as chair of the Gwinnett delegation said Gwinnett school officials have said over and over that Critical Race Theory is not part of the curriculum.   "I think given the limited amount of time that we have here at the state Capitol, I hope that we will come together to work on issues that are not fabricated, manufactured for political purposes, but ones that actually exist that will help improve the education of Gwinnett students and again, provide them every opportunity to thrive," said Rep. Park.   Gwinnett Democrats, however, said they appreciated Sen. Dixon's decision to slow down the process.  They publicly criticized Dixon last week for not following proper procedure and bypassing the Gwinnett delegation to file the bills. "Thank you very much for slowing this down.  Thank you very much for getting the input of the community, because the community is there.  They want to listen to you.  They want hear you," said state Rep. Dewey McClain, D-Lawrenceville.  "Have some integrity.  Be transparent.  You know, that's the key thing is that we must be transparent, but this process was not transparent at all." Sen. Dixon said he plans to move forward with the bills once the regular legislative session begins in January.   WATCH: FOX 5 NEWS LIVE COVERAGE _____ GET BREAKING NEWS EMAIL ALERTS FROM FOX 5 DOWNLOAD THE FOX 5 ATLANTA APP
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