Update on COVID Vaccinations

North Georgia Health Officials Urge Current and Upcoming Eligible Residents to Make a COVID-19 Vaccine Appointment

North GA – The Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) and Governor Brian Kemp announced yesterday that Georgia is going to expand COVID-19 vaccine eligibility on Monday, March 15, 2021. This expansion will include adults aged 55 and older, individuals with disabilities and certain medical conditions. It will also include people with disabilities caused by an injury (e.g., traumatic brain injury or spinal cord injury), a disability due to a longstanding condition that could cause vision loss, nerve damage or loss of a limb, or a disability due to illness such as ALS or multiple sclerosis.

The North Georgia Health District is urging residents who are currently eligible for COVID-19 vaccine and those who will be eligible beginning next week to register for a vaccination appointment online at https://bit.ly/CoV19Vax-NorthGA or call our Call Center hot line at 1-888-881-1474, weekdays from 8:15 AM to 4:30 PM. Go to http://bit.ly/Cov19VaxClinics-NorthGA for more information about the COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics conducted by public health departments in Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield counties.

Currently, the following groups are eligible for COVID-19 vaccine in Georgia:

  • Healthcare workers (physicians, nurses, laboratory technicians, EMS personnel, environmental services, etc.)
  • Residents and staff of long-term care facilities
  • Adults aged 65+ and their caregivers*
  • Law enforcement, firefighters, first responders
  • Educators and staff (Pre-K, K-12, DECAL licensed or exempt childcare programs)
  • Adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their caregivers*
    • Intellectual Disability is a disability characterized by significant limitations in both intellectual functioning and in adaptive behavior, which covers many everyday social and practical skills. This disability originates before the age of 22
    • A developmental disability is a physical or mental impairment that happens before the age of 22, is expected to last a lifetime, and impacts at least three activities of daily living. Activities of daily living include self-care; receptive and expressive language; learning; mobility; self-direction; capacity for independent living; and economic self-sufficiency
  • Parents of children with complex medical conditions who are at high risk for COVID-19 complications
    • Malignancies requiring active treatment
    • Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) including organ transplant (bone marrow or solid organ) within 2 years
    • Critical congenital heart disease
    • Asthma (moderate to severe)
    • Sickle cell disease
    • Diabetes
    • Obesity (BMI >95%)
    • Cystic fibrosis
    • Significant neurologic injury or condition (e.g., hypoxic-ischemic encephalopathy, traumatic brain injury, congenital anomaly, acute flaccid myelitis) with functional/developmental impairment (e.g., cerebral palsy, developmental disability, prematurity, mitochondrial disease)
    • Technology dependence (e.g., BiPAP, trach)

*Caregivers provide care to people who need assistance for everyday tasks.

Care recipients can live in residential or institutional settings, range from children to older adults, and have chronic illnesses or disabling conditions.

Beginning March 15, 2021, the following populations will be eligible for COVID-19 vaccination in Georgia:

  • Adults aged 55 and older
  • Individuals with disabilities
  • Individuals aged 16 years and older with certain medical conditions that increase their risk of severe illness from COVID-19. **Note: Pfizer is the only COVID vaccine currently approved for children aged 16 and older**
  • Conditions include:
    • Asthma
    • Cancer
    • Cerebrovascular Disease
    • Chronic Kidney Disease
    • COPD
    • Cystic Fibrosis
    • Diabetes
    • Hypertension
    • Heart Conditions
    • Immunocompromised State
    • Liver Disease
    • Neurologic Conditions
    • Overweight and Obesity
    • Pregnancy
    • Pulmonary Fibrosis
    • Sickle Cell Disease
    • Thalassemia

**Pfizer vaccine is only available at our Cherokee and Whitfield County COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics**

For more information about COVID-19 Vaccine in Georgia, log onto the Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) website at https://dph.georgia.gov/covid-vaccine.

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About Us: The North Georgia Health District is part of the Georgia Department of Public Health. One of 18 health districts in the state, the North Georgia Health District (District 1-2) is comprised of six counties: Cherokee, Fannin, Gilmer, Murray, Pickens and Whitfield. Many public health programs and services exist throughout the district, all of which are designed to meet the needs of the people of North Georgia. Learn more about us at www.nghd.org, and follow us on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.

To access this press release on our website, please log onto  http://nghd.org/pr/34-media-releases/1290-north-georgia-health-officials-urge-current-and-upcoming-eligible-residents-to-make-a-covid-19-vaccine-appointment.html

Early Voting Ends

Early In-Person Voting has officially ENDED! It’s time to drop off your absentee ballot in a drop box in your county (at the courthouse) or at your local elections office. Remember, you cannot return your absentee ballot at your polling place! 

Or make sure to vote in person on Tuesday, January 5th! Click here for Election Day FAQs.

If you voted by mail, please make sure to check the status of your absentee ballot by logging in to the My Voter Page.

And as always: Do you have questions? Or need assistance? Call the Voter Protection Hotline anytime at 1-888-730-5816.

Thanks!

Noah May, Co-Chair Gilmer County Democratic Committee

2020 Georgia Admendments

2020 Proposed Constitutional Amendments & Referenda On the 2020 General Election Ballot, voters will see ballot questions on proposed constitutional amendments and ballot referenda. Below, you’ll find each ballot question and a summary of the arguments.

Amendment 1: Authorizes dedication of fees and taxes to their intended purposes by general state law. “Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended so as to authorize the General Assembly to dedicate revenues derived from fees or taxes to the public purpose for which such fees or taxes were intended?”

This question asks if you want to give the Georgia legislature authority to use tax revenue to just go to the public purpose for which the money was intended, instead of an all-purpose fund. Right now, the government can use money dedicated to one purpose, like cleaning up tire dumps and blight, and put it towards broader use. Environmental advocates support this bill because since 1990, while Georgia has raised millions of dollars to clean up specific waste, roughly 40% of those dollars have gone to other purposes. Critics of the amendment say it would remove flexibility for how the government can use money.

However, there are conditions for the amendment — dedicated funding could not exceed 1% of the total state revenues from the previous year, and in an emergency, the governor and General Assembly would have the ability to temporarily suspend dedicated funds.

Amendment 2: Waives state and local immunity for violations of state laws, state and federal resolutions. “Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to waive sovereign immunity and allow the people of Georgia to petition the superior court for relief from governmental acts done outside the scope of lawful authority or which violate the laws of this state, the Constitution of Georgia, or the Constitution of the United States?”

This question asks whether Georgians should have the right to sue local and state governments as well as elected officials and public employees in their official capacities to challenge laws that may be unconstitutional. A 2017 ruling by the Georgia Supreme Court largely eliminated the ability of Georgians to challenge the constitutionality of laws without the government’s permission. A bill seeking to restore this ability to Georgians was vetoed by Governor Deal and Governor Kemp, who cited concerns regarding lawsuits from people in mental health facilities and lawsuits involving breach of contract against government employees and officials.

Statewide Referendum: Establishes a tax exemption for certain real property owned by charities. “Shall the Act be approved which provides an exemption from ad valorem taxes for all real property owned by a purely public charity, if such charity is exempt from taxation under Section 501(c)(3) of the federal Internal Revenue Code and such real property is held exclusively for the purpose of building or repairing single-family homes to be financed by such charity to individuals using loans that shall not bear interest?”

This question asks if 501(c)(3) organizations should be exempt from property taxes on property that is in their inventory that is intended for building or repairing single family homes. For example, if this were to pass, Habitat for Humanity Georgia would be exempt from property tax on the vacant lots they own for future building purposes.

Track absentee ballot progress online

ATLANTA (CBS46) – With so much confusion being sown about voting by mail and absentee ballots, Georgia is using a system that will allow you to track exactly where your absentee ballot is at all times.Voters can use Ballottrax to get constant updates through email, text messaging, and other methods. The system is part of Georgia’s “Secure the Vote” campaign.To use the system, you’ll need to register through the system. In order to track the ballot, you must have a valid absentee ballot request on file with your county board of elections. If you haven’t done that, go to <https://ballotrequest.sos.ga.gov/ > to visit the online portal. Go to <https://georgia.ballottrax.net/voter/> to use Ballottrax to follow your absentee ballot.

Updated Voter Information

The Georgia Voter Information page on GilmerDems.org (gilmergadems.org) has been updated with current Democratic Candidates and helpful links for confirming your voting status, WEBSITES FOR GEORGIA VOTERS (at the end).

Identification Requirements: Georgia requires residents to show photo identification when voting in person.  For more information, please click here.

Elections and Voter Registration Calendar: For information, please click here.

Democratic Candidates: To see who is on upcoming ballets, please click here.

Georgia VoteSafe Program:  State law requires the public availability of voter lists including names and address of registered voters. In 2009, the Georgia Legislature enacted a bill known as the VoteSafe program to provide for the confidentiality of residence addresses of certain registered voters who have been, or may be, subject to acts of family violence or stalking or currently reside in a family violence shelter.  For more information, please click here.


WEBSITES FOR GEORGIA VOTERS

Georgia Onward

Dear Friend,

Since launching Georgia Onward last week, we have been thrilled and humbled by your response. So many of you have stepped UP to raise the funds our state legislative candidates need to WIN and FLIP Georgia. 

OUR ASKPlease forward this email to at least 5 friends who want to support Georgia legislative democratic candidates in the quickest, most efficient way.

Georgia Onward SOLELY exists to fully fund the 20 Georgia Legislative Democratic candidates most likely to flip seats in November.

How it works: Georgia Onward will equally distribute your contribution to 20 candidates (for example, your $100 >> $5 per candidate). This is the most effective way to “bundle” for local candidates who may be off your radar, but key to Georgia’s future.

Your single contribution to Georgia Onward will have the greatest impact in flipping the Georgia state house in 2020!

Please help us hit our goal of $56,000 by NEXT MONDAY so we can get resources to local candidates who need them.

Remember: change starts at home.

Onward!
Lindy Miller

2020 Democratic National Convention

CBS News, AUG 17 – How to watch the 2020 Democratic National Convention

The Democratic National Convention will take place virtually August 17-20, with keynote speakers from 9-11 p.m. ET each night. Joe Biden will formally accept the nomination for president on Thursday night and Kamala Harris will accept the nomination for vice president on Wednesday.

The list of speakers includes Michelle Obama on Monday, Jill Biden on Tuesday and former President Obama on Wednesday.  Biden will accept the nomination virtually from his home state of Delaware, rather than traveling to Milwaukee.

CBSN will provide live coverage and analysis throughout the day all week, with full coverage beginning at 5 p.m. ET on “Red & Blue,” with Elaine Quijano. At 8:30 p.m. ET, tune in for an advance of each night’s convention speakers, and again at 11 p.m. ET for post-convention analysis.

From 10-11 p.m. ET each night, CBSN and CBS television stations will simulcast live coverage anchored by “CBS Evening News” anchor and managing editor Norah O’Donnell. 

Coverage will include reporting from CBSN politics reporter Caitlin Huey-Burns, CBS News correspondents and campaign reporters, plus the latest on the state of the race from CBS News elections and surveys director Anthony Salvanto. Reporters from around the country will provide perspectives as part of CBSN’s “Local Matters” series.

Download the free CBS News app for full CBSN coverage and live convention updates. CBSN streaming is available on all major platforms, including iOS, Android, Roku, Amazon, Apple, Samsung,and Pluto.

So how about Kamala Harris??? She will make us a great VP!

This is a “heads-up – a new logo for Gilmer Dems is in the works. Teresa Suarez and Leslie Wade are working on it and will have something for you to comment on in the near future. Watch for it!

We are happy to tell you that we will be hosting as many candidates as we can between now and November 11. Our guests this month, via Zoom, will be candidates in the “jungle” race for U.S. Senate, Richard Dien Winfield and Matt Lieberman.

If you got this as an e-mail, you will get another early on the day of the meeting, Thursday, August 20. It will include an invitation to join the meeting and will contain a link to the meeting. If you don’t have the Zoom ap, you can download it for free. After it is installed, all you have to do is click on the link in the invitation e-mail, and you will be taken to the meeting. If you don’t hear anyone right away, hang on and give the host a moment to admit you.

If you know someone who would like to join the meeting but is not on our e-mail list, ask them to follow the directions in the notice above to participate.

Also mark your calendar for our September 17 meeting. Our guests will be two more U.S. Senate candidates, Mr. Ed Tarver and Rev. Raphael Warnock.

See you Thursday!

P.S. Thanks to Shyla Brenan and Eunice Rosner, who served as poll watchers for the run-off on August 11.

New GCDC Officers

Congratulations to the newly elected officers of the Gilmer County Democratic Committee.

Co-chairs:  Noah May and Melba Gandy
Vice Chair:  Bob Zolten
Secretary:  Joanne Locascio
Treasurer:  Terry Woehr.

Thanks for your service!