Day 24: More Cuts in FY 2011
by Angela Palm on 3/11/2010

Governor Perdue announced today a revised revenue estimate for FY 2011 and new budget recommendations.  There were few specifics given -- the details were to come later.  Isn't that always the way?  Here is what he presented:

  • Shift stabilization funds ($342 million) from the FY 2011 budget into FY 2010.  He didn't specify this, but the K-12 budget had $342.6 million in it to offset part of the austerity cut.  The revenue estimate for 2010 went from $17.4 billion to $17 billion.
  • For FY 2011, he reduced the revenue estimate by $341 million.  In January, he recommended a 2011 budget of almost $18.2 billion.  Today his recommendations bring it down to $17.7 billion.
  • In addition to lowering the revenue estimate, he is proposing:
    • Removing some "enhancements" to education such as enrollment growth.  That's the only one he specified, and that's another $121 million if he meant in K-12. 
    • 3% cuts to most state agencies -- not education, corrections, or higher ed.  He did not say they would not be cut, just that they would not receive a 3% cut.
    • Allowing some sales tax exemptions to sunset such as the sales tax holiday
    • $96 million in new fee revenue
  • He is giving up on the hospital "bed tax," and instead proposes to reduce the medicaid reimbursement by 10.25% and remove the sales tax exemption from non-profit hospitals.  

With the loss of the stabilization funds, the hole in QBE in 2011 just got a lot bigger.  The General Assembly will undoubtedly have some ideas of their own.  We will provide more information as it is available.

Calendar Bill Stopped

Good for you, you did your homework last night and did it well!  HB 1097, limiting school start dates, came to the full House Education Committee today but received support from only three members.  Rep. Matt Dollar and the Georgia Chamber of Commerce lobbyist failed to sway committee members who thought this crossed the line on local control.  It's good to know there is a line.

The Committee gave a "Do Pass" to the following bills:

  • HB 936, allowing the use of bus replacement funds for refurbishing buses
  • HB 1130 as amended:  waives the expenditure controls for three years and offers flexibility on class sizes if the board gives a 30 day notice with a rationale for the decision to the public and holds a public hearing to receive public input.  Certain performance measures must be met to keep the flexibility.
  • HB 1100 eliminating the first and second grade CRCTs 
  • HB 1307 and HR 1485 waiving professional development requirements for teachers renewing their certification

Bullying Bill Tabled

The House took up HB 927, the bullying bill today.  After some discussion a move was made to send it back to Rules but that was defeated.  The bill was tabled.

The Senate unanimously passed SB 346 which revises requirements for assessment notices and appeals.  

Assessment Limits Goes To Rules

HR 1, the constitutional amendment to limit increases of property assessments, easily passed out of House Ways and Means today.  It now goes to Rules.  The General Assembly is in recess until Tuesday, so use the time well.  Where possible, school boards can work with the county commissions and city councils to present a unified message.  "No" is so much louder that way.



The General Assembly will reconvene Tuesday, March 16th for Day 25.