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      State legislators preview upcoming session

      Dukes (D-Albany) says education and transportation are key issues for the session starting January 14

      State legislators give a preview of a busy legislative session coming up in January.

      The Dougherty County delegation spoke at a Chamber of Commerce Breakfast Wednesday morning at the Hilton Garden Inn. Representatives Winfred Dukes, Ed Rynders, and Carol Fullerton say education funding and transportation projects will be top priorities while hashing out the budget. Fullerton says funding for Albany State and Darton College is a must. Rynders says the widening of Highway 133 is back on the state's priority list. However, legislators will need to fight for state funding during a tight budget process.

      "We're going to roll our sleeves up and provide basic services that people expect," Rynders said. "Doing it is going to be painful in some places, obviously, but it's all about the budget. The commitment is we won't raise taxes."

      Albany's State Senator Freddie Powell Sims could not attend the breakfast because she is at a national state senator conference. Her representative echoed the importance of education and transportation.

      The legislative session starts January 14 in Atlanta.

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