A specially appointed panel will have to decide whether indicted state Rep. Tyrone Brooks, a state lawmaker since 1981, remains in office.
A federal grand jury indicted Brooks on Thursday on charges of mail, wire and tax fraud.
Brooks, a Democrat who represents a district in southwest Atlanta, has said he will address the allegations in a news conference soon.
According to Brian Robinson, a spokesman for Gov. Nathan Deal, the state constitution requires that 14 days after the governor's office receives a certified indictment from the U.S. attorney's office, the governor convenes a three-person panel to review the case.
The three members of the panel are the attorney general and two state lawmakers appointed by the governor: a senator and representative, Robinson said.
"If the panel determines that the indictment adversely affects the administration of the office, it can recommend suspending the member," Robinson wrote in an email response to CBS Atlanta News. "The governor then accepts and executes the recommendation."
The law requires that the seat would stay open, Robinson said, until the next regularly occurring election. The suspended member would continue to receive his or her legislative pay.
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