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Georgia House’s top woman opposes tampon bill, seeks other remedies

Georgia’s most powerful female lawmaker moved to derail efforts to remove the state’s 4 percent tax on menstrual products.

Though not a regular member of the panel that was discussing the proposal, House Speaker Pro Tem Jan Jones sat with members of the House Ways and Means subcommittee taking up House Bill 8 during a hearing Wednesday.She told the bill’s sponsor that she didn’t think it addresses the stated goal of removing the burden of taxing women who struggle to afford basic necessities.

Ten states have abolished similar taxes.Jones, a Milton Republican, said: “Because someone asks for something and because some other state does it and because one aspect of the federal government classifies it a certain way is not compelling to me. But I am appreciative to the advocates that are drawing attention to what I think is a (real issue), and that is girls and women who don’t have the means.”

Instead, Jones said she has proposed setting aside up to $1 million for the state Department of Education to provide menstrual products to girls in schools in low-income areas.The House has carved out $500,000 in its proposed budget for next fiscal year, and Jones said she is going to ask the Senate to allocate an additional $500,000.Jones is asking that an additional $1 million go to county health departments to provide the menstrual products to low-income women.

By Maya T. Prabhu, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. See the full story here.

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