Fiscal Year 2013-14

Deal signs budget with 4.6% increase

by Walter C. Jones, Morris News Service

alt

File Photo

Gov. Nathan Deal approved the state's 2013-14 fiscal budget of $19.9 billion on Tuesday.

ATLANTA – Pledging to remain tightfisted as tax collections rise, Gov. Nathan Deal signed into law the 4.6 percent increase in state spending Monday that the General Assembly passed two months ago.

"We believe this is a budget that will maintain the fiscal conservatism of the other budgets I have signed," said the governor, who is in the third year of his term.

Deal waited until the last day before the measure would have become law without his signature. Most governors postpone signing the budget because it delays announcement of line-item vetoes that might anger legislators or special-interest groups, but Deal didn't exercise his veto power. It's the first budget in recent memory that allowed all legislative spending proposals to remain.

He did offer a cautionary note for next year in light of rising tax collections due to economic improvement.

"In the hard times, restrain is a matter of necessity. In the good times, it is a matter of discipline," Deal said, adding that he'll ensure legislators don't go overboard with new spending in the future.

The $19.9 billion budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1 is $819 million higher than the current year's spending plan. Most of the increase goes to cover obligations for healthcare and education.

It also includes additional lottery funds to restore the Pre-K program to 180 days of instruction and more slots for 4-year-olds. It boosts lottery money for the HOPE Scholarship and grants.

It adds $5 million for cancer research and $45 million in bonds to build a cancer-research building at Georgia Regents University.

And it sends another $50 million in bonds to what the state has already committed to the deepening of the Savannah River shipping channel.



More Local

Gray found guilty of rape

The verdict in is in, and Benjamin Gray was found guilty of rape. More details to come. Read More


Sexsomnia or rape? Verdict in jury’s hands

Closing arguments in the sleepwalking rape trial of Benjamin Gray concluded Friday. Coweta County Assistant District Attorney Herb Cranford ... Read More


118 Newnan High students tested for TB

More than a hundred tuberculosis exposure tests were administered at Newnan High School on Friday, as earlier in the week a NHS student was ... Read More


Senoia man arrested after fleeing from officer

A Senoia area man was arrested Tuesday and taken to the Coweta County Jail after allegedly leading a Coweta County sheriff's deputy on a hig ... Read More


UPDATE

Wreck victim in fair condition

James Hand, who was injured in a motor vehicle crash Thursday morning, was listed in fair condition Friday at Atlanta Medical Center. Hand w ... Read More

Prescribed burn smokes out Lake Redwine

A large fire that brought days of smoke and acrid smells to the Lake Redwine area was a prescribed burn that was done in accordance with cur ... Read More