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Rep. Maddox prepares to leave for special session next week

Georgia’s lawmakers return to Atlanta next week to begin the process of redrawing the state’s political districts, and early speculation is that South Georgia will lose seats in the General Assembly.
Stagnant population growth in this region of the state is the reason behind the loss that is expected to occur in the redistricting, which will take place during a special session of the legislature due to begin Monday.
Representative Gene Maddox (R-Cairo), says the special session is surrounded by many unknowns. “I do know that South Georgia will be losing about four Representatives and possibly one or more Senators,” Maddox states, “at this point no one is excited about the temporary changes that have been suggested. I’m sure all the plans that have been made will be changed many times before the final district lines are formed and voted on by the House and Senate.”
Maddox points out that each House member must add 10,000 voters to his or her district, bringing the total number of voters in each district to 54,000.
“Unfortunately, South Georgia has not grown in population and we are losing representation. I really hate this, because we will not have as many spokesmen for our agricultural needs,” he says.
Maddox says the process could take two weeks or more.
Regardless of the redistricting outcome, Maddox says a new man or woman will have to represent the former District 172, which includes a portion of Grady County and all of Decatur County, since he plans to retire from his seat in the House.
“I (will) have served diligently for eight years (at the end of my term in 2012) and feel it is time for me to let someone else represent my constituents. It has been a wonderful experience and a great honor, and it is with regret that I feel I need to step down for the betterment of Southwest Georgia.” Maddox was first elected to state office in the fall of 2004.

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