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Staff photo by C.B. Schmelter / Georgia State Rep. Jason Ridley speaks during a "Get Out The Vote" rally at the Dalton Convention Center on Thursday, Nov. 1, 2018 in Dalton, Ga. Republican Brian Kemp is facing off against Democrat Stacey Abrams for governor in Georgia.

Georgia Speaker of the House David Ralston named state Rep. Jason Ridley, R-Chatsworth, to a study committee that will try to loosen restrictions on residential building codes.

Ridley will be one of five members of the Workforce Housing Study Committee, which state Rep. Vance Smith, R-Pine Mountain, created in March. According to the resolution to form the committee, the aim is to tackle residential design requirements that some counties and cities have passed.

"Such requirements infringe on an individual's private property rights and a consumer's choice of building products and materials, many of which are manufactured in Georgia," the resolution reads.

Smith, the study committee chair, also argued that design requirements on house drives up the cost of those properties, blocking some residents from being able to afford a home. Smith's resolution passed the House, 118-46. State Rep. Colton Moore, R-Trenton, voted against the measure.

Smith tried to pass a bill that would have prevented counties and cities from creating design restrictions earlier in the session. While the House Agriculture & Consumer Affairs Committee passed the legislation, the bill never came to a vote on the House floor. 

The Georgia Municipal Association and the Association County Commissioners of Georgia, both lobbying groups for local governments, opposed Smith's legislation this year. An ACCG policy director described the proposal online as "a mammoth preemption bill that usurps local governments' ability to regulate building design."

Ridley has previously told the Times Free Press he supports less restrictive rules for building designs. 

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