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Our pick for ballot measures: Yes to all (except Amendment 1)

Trauma care, energy efficiency, non-competes and other highly exciting issues




Pushed by the state's business community, this complicated amendment deals with the non-compete clauses prohibiting employees from working in a similar industry or geographic area after leaving a company. You'd never know that, though, from the outrageously deceptive language on the ballot.

If approved, the amendment would allow a judge to modify a contract that's challenged by the employee, instead of simply tossing it out as legally unenforceable.

Supporters, who've bankrolled a $1 million promotional effort, say the change would help woo high-tech firms by showing the state's serious about helping them protect proprietary information. But critics — and there are many — say the change could potentially restrict employees' rights and result in excessively stringent contracts. The reality is likely somewhere in the middle. But hoodwinking voters into amending the Constitution with a ballot question that reads like it was dictated by a lobbyist is the wrong way to modernize Georgia's contract laws.


You've probably seen the TV commercials in favor of this amendment that feature a traffic accident followed by a young girl being driven off in an ambulance with the implication that she won't make it. Scare tactics aside, the Peach State has a terrible record when it comes to providing access to trauma care centers. Supporters say Georgia needs 30 such centers yet only has 16 and that the new $10 tag tax could generate an estimated $80 million a year to beef up trauma care. There's even the possibility some of that money might end up at Grady Memorial Hospital.


Currently, the Georgia Department of Transportation has to have all of a project's funding in the bank before work can start. This amendment would change that policy, making it easier for the state agency to begin projects that could take multiple years to complete.


This amendment would allow the state to pay for energy-efficiency improvements by entering into multiyear agreements with contractors. Future savings in energy would be used to pay off the debt. It's a no-brainer that could help save taxpayers millions of dollars, clean up the environment and create an estimated 11,000 well-paying jobs.


This one's confusing. Let's make it simple: Some people in Savannah 'burb Garden City want to annex their property into an adjacent city. Oh, why not?


At issue: Eliminating a state tax on inventory that sits unsold in businesses' warehouses and stockrooms. That would mean the state would see about $2 million less in revenue — an amount even the staunchest of tax-break opponents say is small.

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