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Atlanta Civic Circle Democracy

Georgia to spend $30.2 billion next year – mostly on education and health care

A bar graph shows Georgia's top state spending categories. The first bar is highlighted showing that the biggest single spending category is K-12 education, which gets about $10.7 billion out of a $30.2 billion budget.

Georgia’s new $30.2 billion budget includes about $950 million in raises for a state workforce that seems eager to leave. For each of the last five years, about one in five state employees has quit — the latest turnover rate was over 23% for the most recent fiscal year, which ended last June.

The state auditor himself told budget-writers that pretty much an entire audit team recently got hired away by a metro school system for a roughly $30,000 raise each. Prison staff turnover has contributed to conditions bad enough that there were at least 20 murders in state correctional facilities last year.

Overall, the spending plan is a 10.8% increase over the current year’s budget after cuts during COVID-19. The top spending categories are education and health care, which were the areas with the biggest cuts this past year.

Click here to read the full story and more graphics on Atlanta Civic Circle.

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Maggie Lee

Maggie Lee is a freelance reporter who's been covering Georgia and metro Atlanta government and politics since 2008.

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