The Sabanization of Georgia continues apace.
Except I’m not talking about the University of Georgia. I’m talking about Georgia’s state government.
An amendment attached to an unrelated records bill passed by the state House and Senate late Tuesday states that “athletic departments and related private athletic associations” will have 90 days to process open records requests. The lone exception to this would be to access salaries for “nonclerical staff,” which includes coaches and other various athletic department staffers.
Senate Bill 323 with the attached amendment will be sent to Gov. Nathan Deal’s desk for a signature.
This law would change how the University of Georgia operates, given that current law states that it must provide access to existing public records within three business days of it being requested, or the agency must give a timetable for how long it will take to produce the records.
State Rep. Earl Ehrhart, R-Powder Springs, is a co-sponsor of the amendment and said the intention is to add extra time in returning open record requests as other states and athletic departments are afforded.
“This will help the startup programs, this applies to every single intercollegiate program in this state, every university from the University of Georgia … [to] any intercollegiate sport at a D2, D3 school,” Ehrhart said. “It just allows us to play on the same field as Alabama and everybody else.”
This is absurd. And what is with this “us” shit, anyway? I must have missed seeing Ehrhart in the coaches’ booth last season.
What it’s really about is shielding B-M from having to say much about you know what.
National Signing Day, when high school athletes can sign National Letters of Intent with universities to play college athletics, occurred this year on Feb. 3. The Atlanta Journal Constitution published a lengthy story on how much money Georgia’s athletic department spent on recruiting-related expenses since Smart took the job on Feb. 21.
“At that recruiting time of year they get absolutely inundated with people wanting to have that recruiting information and it’s not a level playing field because Georgia, our athletic associations, are private in and of themselves and they don’t have that capacity, so this just allows that type of level playing field,” Ehrhart said.
Ehrhart claims this amendment won’t restrict information.
Do I really need to ask the question when can you tell a politician is making things up?
Maybe we just need to offer the Georgia governorship to Nick Saban. Resistance appears to be futile. Besides, doesn’t every Georgian deserve a level playing field?