The Savannah, Augusta and Columbus communities are the most impacted in the state by reductions in federal spending, according to a new report by Georgia State University. Dr. Peter Bluestone, Senior Research Associate at GSU’s Fiscal Research Center, said those cities feel more of the cuts from sequestration and the government shutdown because a larger percentage of their economy is based on federal defense spending.
As long as Washington’s government shutdown continues, three key pieces of legislation affecting Georgia are stalled. And observers in Georgia worry how those bills will fare even once lawmakers move past the impasse.
The Georgia Board of Regents has signed off on a $1.93 billion budget request for fiscal year 2015, which represents a 2.6 percent increase over the year before. The request was adopted Wednesday by the board and now heads to the governor's office for consideration.
Under the budget Gov. Nathan Deal signed Tuesday, the state will spend about five percent more than it’s spending this year. State officials say costs are rising for the fiscal year that starts on July 1 – but so is revenue.
Under a bill passed last week, state lawmakers won’t be able to divert hazardous and solid waste trust fund fees to other parts of the budget. The measure caused a last-minute battle between legislators in the waning moments of the legislative session, but backers say Georgians will now be getting what they paid for.
The amended 2013 budget cleared the state Senate Friday and is now headed for a conference committee to resolve discrepancies with the House version. Lawmakers make changes to the budget each year to reflect changes in school enrollment and other items.