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Education Cuts are No Way to Fix Transportation

Posted December 16, 2014 by Alan Essig

[Read more]As the governor and General Assembly consider proposals to increase funding for transportation by $1 billion or more each year, they need to resist the urge to rob Peter to pay Paul. Several of the proposals floated so far either directly or indirectly raid the General Fund to pay for

Mediocre Revenue Growth Won’t Fix Georgia’s Transportation, Education, Other Challenges

Posted December 11, 2014 by Alan Essig

[Read more]It was good to hear state leaders acknowledge the need to bolster the state’s finances this week at an Athens conference attended by veteran and newly elected lawmakers preparing for next year’s legislative session. A state study committee spent months to determine that Georgia’s years of neglect of its transportation

Unaccountable Agriculture Tax Break Hurting Rural Georgia

Posted December 4, 2014 by Wesley Tharpe

[Read more]A set of sales tax breaks passed by Georgia lawmakers in 2012 is a growing hardship for city and county governments struggling to fund schools, parks, libraries and other essential services. The problem is felt most outside of metro Atlanta, due to the larger than expected local revenue loss from

Reality Check: Thankful We Have More in Common Than Cable News Makes Us Think

Posted November 25, 2014 by Taifa Smith Butler

[Read more]Last week I reminded my tween daughter about the golden rule – Treat others the way you want to be treated.
She was telling me making friends hasn’t been easy in her new middle school. We’ve all been there and remember it’s a challenging stage of life for many middle

Living the Numbers: Climbing Class Sizes are Hurting Students

Posted November 20, 2014 by Claire Suggs

I traveled to communities around Georgia the past few months to share findings from our recent reports on education funding, The Schoolhouse Squeeze 2014 and Cutting Class to Make Ends Meet 2014… [Read more]. My part is easy. I explain the numbers: how much state funding has been cut, how much

Raise Georgia’s Minimum Wage to Expand Middle Class, Strengthen Economy

Posted November 12, 2014 by Wesley Tharpe

[Read more]Over the last few months I’ve found myself tipping a little extra at my favorite local restaurants and dishing out some extra courtesy when I buy from my favorite neighborhood shops. It’s not because I’m any nicer than the next person or that I recently came into newfound wealth. It’s

The New Normal Does Not Work for Georgia’s Students

Posted November 5, 2014 by Claire Suggs

[Read more]The responses we got from our annual survey of Georgia educators this summer are troubling, the stress often pouring off the pages. Here is an example from Coffee County Schools:
“[The greatest impact of the QBE austerity cuts have been] class size increases, elimination of teachers, para-professionals, secretarial and administration

Georgia Voters Should Reject Tax Cap Constitutional Amendment

Posted October 30, 2014 by Wesley Tharpe

[Read more]Next Tuesday, Nov. 4, Georgians will head to the polls to vote in what could be one of the most competitive elections in the state’s modern history. But you may be unaware that the most lasting legacy you can create for the state is how you vote on Constitutional Amendment

Georgians Set to Vote on Income Tax Straitjacket

Posted October 23, 2014 by Wesley Tharpe

[Read more]Georgians will vote November 4th whether to permanently enshrine the state’s top income tax rate of 6 percent in the state’s constitution. The so-called “tax-cap” amendment sounds American as apple pie, right? No one looks forward to the day their income tax bill comes due and the prospect of capping

New GBPI Survey: Students Still Feel Budget Cuts’ Sting

Posted October 16, 2014 by Claire Suggs

[Read more]Here is a status report on the state of education in Georgia, from someone who knows: “Delayed instructional initiatives, depleted reserves, increased class sizes, frozen wages, deferred maintenance and negligible bus replacement. It doesn’t take great imagination to envision what could have been done over the last five years with