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Kemp says Georgia lawmakers can spend savings to ease cuts

AP Photo/John Bazemore, File

Gov. Brian Kemp is giving lawmakers permission to spend $250 million from Georgia’s rainy day fund to decrease budget cuts in the year beginning July 1.

Kemp agreed to tap the state’s piggy bank Monday as he set a new revenue estimate for the 2021 budget year. The Republican governor cut the ceiling for spending state-collected revenue from $28.1 billion to $25.9 billion. Kemp's new estimate of $2.2 billion less in state funds is actually an improvement over earlier outlooks. It will equal a 10% funding cut for state agencies, K-12 schools, universities and colleges. That's down from earlier forecasts of as much as 14% reductions.