The governor of Georgia is an elected position, and a governor's term of office is four years. A governor can hold two successive terms. Past governors are eligible for re-election to an additional two terms after one term out of office. The Constitution of Georgia, Article V, Section 2, lays out the duties and responsibilities of the governor of Georgia.
The governor is the chief executive officer of Georgia. When the legislature passes a bill, the governor can sign it or take no action, in which case it becomes law. He also can veto the bill, but the General Assembly can override the veto with a two-thirds majority vote. He can require written information from employees of the executive branch on any subject relating to the executive office.
The governor is the senior law enforcement officer of the state of Georgia. He approves all changes to the Georgia Police Officer Standards and Training Act (P.O.S.T.), and he often attends police academy graduations. The Georgia Constitution states that the governor "shall be the conservator of the peace throughout the state." He can grant pardons for criminal convictions.
The governor is the commander-in-chief of all military forces of the state of Georgia, including the Georgia National Guard and the Georgia Reserves, but not of federal forces based in Georgia. During time of war, he approves deployment of all Georgia military forces. During time of peace, he is involved in all tactical and budgetary decisions affecting Georgia's armed forces.
The governor is responsible for filling vacancies in public office due to death, retirement or other circumstance. He appoints someone to fill any vacant office that is not an elected position. He also appoints an interim official to vacant elected positions; this person holds office for the remainder of the term. The Senate must confirm appointments to elected offices. The governor also issues writs of election to fill any vacancies in the Senate or in the House of Representatives.
Special Sessions of the General Assembly
The governor can convene special sessions of the General Assembly in emergency situations. A three-fifths majority of the General Assembly also can vote to convene a special session.