House Speaker David Ralston didn’t wait until the upcoming General Assembly session to file legislation honoring outgoing Gov. Nathan Deal.
Ralston, R-Blue Ridge and House Majority Leader Jon Burns, R-Newington, filed a resolution naming the state appellate courts complex under construction down the street from the Capitol the “Nathan Deal Judicial Center.”
Deal, who leaves office in early January, is a former judge who pushed through an expansion of the Court of Appeals and the Supreme Court, and the funding for the new facility, which is the most expensive Capitol Hill building ever.
Deal has appointed more than 100 jurists to the bench – including most of the judges on Georgia’s top courts.
The complex, which is set to cost at least $110 million, was built on the spot where the Georgia Archives Building once rose. Nicknamed the White Ice Cube, the state tore down that building earlier this year to make way for the judicial center that courts officials have said was desperately needed.
Plans for the new building, which is set to open in 2019, include a four-story atrium with giant windows overlooking the Capitol. Designers hope to eventually build a park over nearby roads to link the complex to the Gold Dome, but there is no funding yet to do so.
The resolution Ralston and Burns filed says Deal “will take his place among the state’s greatest governors when his final term of office ends in January 2019.”