A Georgia House committee has unanimously endorsed an idea to take a close look into how Georgia lawmakers could help struggling rural communities.

“I want this council to look at the big picture and recommend legislative actions that can empower our rural areas,” said House Speaker David Ralston, explaining House Resolution 389 to a House committee.

The legislation would create the House Rural Development Council, a group of 15 lawmakers to be appointed by Ralston.

“We lost a hospital in Ellijay just last spring, one of several rural hospitals to close in Georgia in recent years,” Ralston said. “However, this Friday afternoon I’m going back home to reopen a new emergency room facility as part of a new ‘micro hospital’ with fewer than 10 patent beds in that town. This is the kind of creative approach to addressing issues in rural Georgia that I want this council to explore.”

SOURCE: macon.com, March 7, 2017