Watson Mill Bridge will return to its status as a state park after volunteers and local governments contributed $30,000 to help run it. The park had been downgraded last year as part of statewide budget cuts.
Amtrak officials say, more Georgians got on and off their trains last year than any year before. Amtrak's Georgia ridership broke 200,000 passengers for the first in 2011. This comes as Amtrak expects major cuts in federal funding.
Gov. Nathan Deal’s 2013 spending plan is about 4 percent larger than the revised 2012 budget. That reflects increased tax revenues. But state officials told lawmakers Thursday, there'll be no reprieve from budget cuts next year.
Youth programs would be eliminated and 13 employees would lose their jobs under a proposed $871,000 spending cut to Augusta's recreation department. The plan involves five of the city's 16 recreation centers.
Some Georgia death row inmates could lose their attorneys amid budget cuts that could potentially halt appeals hearings and even delay executions. To make up for the gap, a nonprofit that is involved in 90 percent of death-row cases will ask lawmakers for more funding to avoid layoffs.
Next year’s education budget is headed to the governor. Thursday, the State Board of Education shaved two percent from it, as mandated by Governor Deal. But one of school systems’ biggest financial challenge isn’t in the budget.
Many libraries have had to cut hours and close their doors some days this recession. The state has cut funding to libraries 30 percent in the last few years, and on top of that money from local property taxes is down, as well as private funding.