A committee or section of the State Bar of Georgia that is interested in advocating a position related to any bill or legislative issue must comply with Standing Board Policy 100 which outlines the Bar’s legislative policy and procedure. Any proposed position must be “germane to the legitimate purposes of the State Bar.” The United States Supreme Court has held that the justifiable purposes of a mandatory bar are (1) regulating the legal profession and (2) improving the quality of legal services, a standard outlined in Keller v. State Bar of California (1990).
A section or committee can submit a legislative proposal through the Advisory Committee on Legislation (ACL) for approval. Sections and committees cannot take legislative positions without following the process set out in Rule 100. If the Advisory Committee on Legislation votes to adopt the proposal, it will proceed to the State Bar’s Board of Governors for final approval.
The State Bar of Georgia regularly takes positions on legislative proposals that are germane to its legitimate purposes and while the Bar's legislative program is supported by voluntary contributions it has historically elected to operate in the manner described in Standing Board Policy 100.