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Georgia House Representatives approve state budget


State employees and HOPE beneficiaries may see raises from a newly approved state budget.

Georgia House Representatives in the Georgia General Assembly passed House Bill 19 on Thursday, sending fiscal year 2024’s budget back to the state Senate for further discussion. After senators deliberate, state lawmakers have until late March to finalize the budget.

While House Representatives supported Gov. Brian Kemp’s goal to give $2,000 raises to state employees, they voted to double raises for state law enforcement officers, for a total increase of $4,000.

However, the House voted against Kemp’s plan to return to the original HOPE Scholarship system, which paid full tuition for all HOPE recipients. Instead, House Representatives voted to maintain full tuition payment for Zell Miller scholars, while increasing general HOPE payment by 5%, for a total of 95% of tuition.

House Representatives also voted to increase aid to the state’s Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities by $51 million and to give $500 bonuses to 54,000 retirees in the state’s Employees Retirement System.