The 2020 Georgia Legislative Session has been narrowly focused on the budget. Unlike the federal government, by law, Georgia must balance its budget every year. Georgia is struggling to make this happen in the current and next fiscal years due to an expected shortfall.
The potential shortfall results from a cut in the top state income tax rate adopted in 2018, and to revenue growing more slowly than projected, even declining in some months. Lawmakers are grappling with difficult decisions. Speaker Ralston said, “we always have to keep in mind that the budget is more than about numbers and percentages, because those are dollars that touch peoples’ lives. Those fund programs which are important to people."
Some legislators are proposing not filling vacant positions and eliminating travel to cover some of the deficit. Rural Georgia may be particularly hard hit. The proposed budget impacts some of Georgia’s most vulnerable (foster children, those with mental health disorders, seniors).
Call and email (be sure to include your contact information in your email) the following elected officials with the suggested script:
I oppose budget cuts that will effect the most vulnerable Georgians. The proposed cuts are too deep for an already stressed system, and endanger the lives of rural Georgians, children, low-income families, Georgians with disabilities, and those who need access to mental health care.
Governor Brian Kemp
Constituent Services: (404) 656-1776
House Speaker David Ralston
House Majority Leader Jon Burns
Chair of House Appropriations Committee Terry England
Chairs of Appropriations Subcommittees
Rep. Penny Houston, Economic Development Subcommittee
Rep. Robert Dickey, Education Subcommittee
Rep. Sam Watson, General Government
Rep. Butch Parrish, Health
Rep. David Knight, Higher Education
Rep. Katie Dempsey, Human Resources
Rep. Andrew Welch, Public Safety
Rep Darlene Taylor, Transportation
The link to your legislators is here
There are 38 weeks until the November 2020 election.
Thank you for your hard work.
Remember, it’s a marathon and not a sprint.