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Organ Donors Losing Incentive to Give?

By: Bill Pearson
By: Bill Pearson

For years, the cost of a Georgia driver's license could be cut nearly in half if the driver agreed to become an organ donor, but now a bill is on Gov. Sonny Perdue's desk that would remove the financial incentive.

Organ donors strongly disagree with the change.

Kate Patrick says, "I think it's ridiculous. I think if it's benefited so many people to have more organ donors through lower-cost licenses, they should keep it like it is. They shouldn't change it."

State lawmakers who voted against this proposal agree, saying the plan is ridiculous. They don't understand that with a growing number of drivers on Georgia roads, why the state would want to cut back any incentive to increase the number of organ donors.

Sen. Tim Golden, (D) District 8, says, "I think if you don't have the financial incentive, people are not as likely to give, so obviously it's going to hurt a donor giving in Georgia, and I hate to see that happen, and that's why I'm opposed to this change."

Lawmakers who've opposed this bill are now hoping for Gov. Perdue to step in.

Tom Golden adds, "This is certainly one he needs to, without a doubt, veto, and he has the power to do it with a stroke of a pen."

It’s action that many lawmakers consider unlikely, considering leaders in Perdue's Republican part backed the change.

The end to the organ donor price discount is part of a large overhaul to Georgia's Driver's License Department and could bring in $4 million a year in new money.


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