Under the Gold Dome – Update for Week of February 6th
After a rather quiet first month of the 2023 General Assembly, things started moving along this past week. The Georgia House passed the amended FY23 $32.5 billion budget (the year we are currently operating in) on Thursday and sent it over to the Senate. The budget is mostly based upon the Governor’s recommendations, and you can read the bill here.
Some highlights from the bill:
The amended 2023 budget provides for an additional one billion for property tax breaks for homeowners and one billion in income tax breaks.
QBE fully funded at $12.4 billion
$1.25 million for character education (schools can apply for $50,000 in matching grants)
$60,000 in school safety grants
$2 million to support private psychiatric contract beds for adults with severe mental health issues
$250.8 million for the state’s Medicaid program
The assembly will now begin working on the FY 2024 budget. Committees are meeting regularly and more legislation will begin moving through the House next week. Passing a balanced budget is the only constitutional requirement that the assembly has.
Also, leadership for the Cobb delegation was recently elected. The “delegation” refers to all members of the state House and Senate who represent Cobb County citizens. In late January, lawmakers elected a bipartisan slate to lead the delegation this session. State Rep. Teri Anulewicz, D-Smyrna, will serve as chair, while Rep. Devan Seabaugh, R-Marietta, will be vice chair. State Sen. Michael “Doc” Rhett will serve as secretary. This is the first time in recent history that a bipartisan leadership team was elected; typically leaders are from the majority party. Democrats have a narrow 1-vote majority in the 20-member delegation. For a complete listing, visit our Civic Engagement page. A broader definition of Cobb Delegation would include elected officials at the federal level (U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate)
It’s important to let your elected officials know your priorities in terms of funding and policies. Another useful tool is to know how a bill becomes a law in Georgia.