ATLANTA (AP) An increasing number of convicted felons in Georgia have been getting the rights to own guns reinstated by the State Board of Pardons and Paroles. <br />
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported Sunday that the State Board of Pardons and Paroles restored firearms rights for more than 1,400 felons between 2008 and 2013. The board restored gun rights for 666 people last year, which is 10 times the number of pardons that restored gun rights six years ago. <br />
Board officials say among other stipulations, convicted felons are granted the right to carry firearms after their sentences and probation have been completed for at least five years. The pardons reinstate felons' rights to bear arms without expunging their criminal records. <br />
Northeast Georgia Medical Center Braselton President Anthony Williamson said he would speak loudly in order to compete with the noise of construction crews outside the windows behind him. That sort of challenge expresses in a nutshell the story of the new hospital’s burgeoning inaugural year.