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Georgia's Governor Signs Bill Making English the Official Language of the State

April 25, 1996
Atlanta, GA - Late today Governor Zell Miller signed into law a bill making English the official language of Georgia. The new official English legislation encompasses all aspects of government operations, broadening the scope of a previous resolution that was included in Georgia's official English law.

Senate Bill 519, sponsored by Sen. Mike Crotts (R-Conyers) and Rep. John Mobley (D-Winder), passed the Georgia House of Representatives by an overwhelming margin (135-31). The legislation will set in place a policy regulating the use of languages other than English in most state operations.

U.S.ENGLISH Chairman Mauro E. Mujica hailed the news, saying, "We are delighted that Governor Miller and the General Assembly of Georgia have finally addressed the situation of multilingual government through action which has given the official English law universal application. It is now clear that the citizens of Georgia realize the importance of preserving the English language as a common bond -- the language spoken by 97 percent of the people in this nation.

Last month, Wyoming became the 23rd state to adopt English as its official language of government. In addition to the bills sponsored by U.S.ENGLISH that are pending in various states, U.S.ENGLISH is supporting H.R. 123, introduced by Rep. Bill Emerson (R-Mo.). H.R. 123 would declare English the official language of the U.S. government and has already gained the support of nearly 200 co-sponsors.

U.S.ENGLISH has been the driving force behind the enactment of official English legislation at both the state and federal levels since its founding in 1983 by the late Senator S.I. Hayakawa of California, a noted semanticist and an immigrant of Japanese descent. U.S.ENGLISH is the largest national, non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to enacting laws to make English the official language of the U.S. government. The organization has over 1.3 million members nationwide.

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