Georgia will collect another $5 billion in surplus revenue after the just-concluded budget year, which could leave lawmakers and Gov. Brian Kemp with more than $10 billion in extra cash to spend, invest or give back to taxpayers. That’s about $1,000 for every Georgia resident.
It’s the third year of huge surpluses, after $3.7 billion in 2021 and $6.4 billion in 2022, and critics say Republicans are purposefully holding down spending while cutting university budgets, refusing to fully expand Medicaid health insurance to poorer adults and watching state employees flee.
Danny Kanso, senior fiscal analyst with the liberal-leaning Georgia Budget & Policy Institute, said leaders “are actively choosing to leave billions on the table to accrue increasingly large reserves for no clear purpose.”