Georgia's Republican state senators have taken away some of Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle's powers.
After meeting for nearly eight hours in Macon, members of the Republican caucus announced that Cagle can no longer appoint committee members or chairmen.
A seven-member committee will make those decisions and Cagle gets to appoint two of the members.
Macon state Sen. Cecil Staton and others called it a "power-sharing" arrangement, not an attack against Cagle.
"This was not in my view in any way an attempt to slight him or to degrade the lieutenant governor or even to take away from the Lt. governor, but it is our duty every two years for the next bi-annual the next two year session of the general assembly to choose our rules and our officers and that's exactly what we did today," said Staton.
But Staton also said it was partly in response to complaints from several Republican members who lost chairman positions in the last session.
He said Senate Republicans still respect Cagle, but want to make the process more fair.
Cagle will still preside over the state Senate, as set out in the state's Constitution, and assign bills to committees, the senators said.
The meeting of the Senate Republican caucus got underway around 10 a.m. at Mercer University's Woodruff House.
The state Constitution says only that the lieutenant governor must preside over Senate proceedings. The majority party can grant him additional powers or take them away -- like making committee assignments or picking chairmen.
"We took a look at all the ways in which we interact with the lieutenant governor and basically what I think we came to today was a sharing agreement, so the lieutenant governor continues to have significant influence in the workings of the senate, but we also preserve for the senate themselves some of those workings as well, the authority, because after all we are members of the senate," said Staton.
Republicans stripped Democratic Lt. Gov. Mark Taylor of those when they took control of the Senate in 2003. Then they gave them back to Cagle, a Republican, four years ago.
Cagle was elected to a second term as lieutenant governor this week.
Arriving at the Woodruff House before the meeting, he said he didn't expect any changes in his duties. He said he was elected to carry out certain duties, and any change should be up to the state's voters.
After the meeting, Staton said Cagle spoke to the group for between 40 minutes and an hour.