Politics

Georgia House, Senate Rapidly Pass State Budget Agreement

Georgia lawmakers have approved a $40 billion budget for 2016.
Georgia lawmakers have approved a $40 billion budget for 2016.
Credit Nick Nesmith / WABE
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Georgia lawmakers have approved a $40 billion state spending plan for the next year. The budget gives raises to the state’s top judges and pushes $103 million in costs for some part-time school employees’ health insurance to local districts.

The state’s economy has shown signs of growth after the recession, giving lawmakers more flexibility as they negotiated the spending plan.

The budget plan restores $280 million to cuts that affected public school districts in recent years, still below what they are promised under funding formulas. Gov. Nathan Deal has said he intends that be used to add instructional days and reduce or eliminate furloughs.

The budget increases funding for staff at the state’s ethics commission and includes about $1.1 billion in capital projects throughout the state.

The plan now goes to Deal.

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