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April 12, 2016

Promoting job growth, expansion in 2017 budget

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Legislative appropriators this year passed a $23.7 billion budget for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1, 2016 and runs through June 30, 2017.  While the FY2017 budget is being cited as a record increase in state spending, it is important to note that more than 40 percent of the growth is a direct result of the transportation funding bill passed last year.  Additionally, next year's budget is said to be based upon a projected 4.2 percent revenue growth rate.

The final budget currently under consideration by Governor Deal includes long-awaited pay raises for teachers, government workers and law enforcement personnel.  It also includes a number of additions specifically intended to enhance statewide economic development.  Senate Appropriations Chairman Jack Hill (R-Reidsville) highlighted a few items in his weekly newsletter.

FY 2017 BUDGET ITEMS PROMOTING JOB DEVELOPMENT

  • $10 million for Invest Georgia a public-private program to aid Georgia early and growth stage companies in attracting venture capital.
  • $300,000 in grants for small film projects to help Georgia production start ups.
  • $800,000 for additional state tourism and music industry promotion campaigns.
BONDS FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT-RELATED PROJECTS
  • $4 million for shore line erosion mitigation on Jekyll Island.
  • $600,000 dollars added to $3.5 million appropriated in FY16 Amended Budget for sea wall on Hutchinson Island in Savannah.
The governor has until May 3 to sign, veto, or let pass in to law all bills from the 2016 legislative session.  To review the budget (HB 751) in full, click here.