With two legislative days remaining until sine die (adjournment), we in the General Assembly are working hard to pass meaningful legislation that reinforces our values, protects our families and promotes job growth.
The 2016 Georgia General Assembly is down to the last few days and I believe that much has been accomplished that will serve our state well. The budget is still in committee and is being carefully analyzed before the vote, with every member of the legislature committed to passing a financial plan for our state that is fiscally responsible.
Last week the Senate passed its version of the fiscal year 2017 budget by a vote of 53 to 2. The $23.7 billion budget represents growth of approximately 4.3 percent over the revenue estimate in the FY16 amended. This budget includes an additional net $612 million in fuel funds produced by HB 170 being appropriated to transportation.
Last week the House of Representatives spent time in committees and on the floor discussing bills that passed the Senate and were delivered to our chamber on Crossover Day. Concurrently, the Senate spent the week considering bills that we sent to them.
As we head toward the final days of the legislative session, our deliberations this week in one way or another addressed living responsibly in regard to our rights, the economy, and our tax system. As usual it was a very productive and interesting week at the Capitol and many bills were passed that directly impact our community.
SR 756 would amend the state constitution and set up a procedure that could lower the state income tax. If the net amount of revenue deposited in the general fund in the preceding fiscal year exceeds $23.6 billion, and the reserve fund holds at least 8 percent of that amount, the individual state income tax would decrease by 0.1 percent. For each subsequent year during which those conditions remain in place, the income tax would decrease by an additional 0.1 percent every year with those conditions.
We ended our week on Friday with a flurry of activity in the Georgia House, in anticipation of Crossover Day on Monday. Our legislation this session continues to reflect our priorities of protecting our families, encouraging job growth and promoting economic development.