South Georgia at the State Capitol

 By State Sen. Greg Goggans

 I hope everyone is enjoying the start of spring here in South Georgia.  The General Assembly is about to begin its last three legislative days of the 2011 session Monday.  We are scheduled to adjourn Thursday, April 14 before coming back later this year for a special session to take up redistricting for state legislative seats and U.S. Congressional districts based of the 2010 Census data.


 As we began April, signs of a gradual economic recovery remained steady.  I wanted to update you all on where we stand with the state revenue numbers currently and as compared to the entire 2011 Fiscal Year which began last July 1.

  • State revenues grew at a 10.7 percent rate in March continuing a very encouraging trend.  Total revenues for the month totaled $1.1 billion with an increase of $107 million.


  • Individual income tax collections grew by an impressive 12.5 percent or $43 million on collections of $388 million. Refunds of $499 million actually declined by $26 million from March of a year ago.


  • Sales tax collections for the state increased 16.4 percent or an increase of $58.3 million on sales tax collections of $413.1 million for March.


  • Motor fuel tax collections in total were up 6.5 percent or $4.5 million, but higher prices began to push down consumption as the excise tax, based on per gallon, fell a little over 1 percent.


  • The third month of the quarter showed an increase in corporate income taxes of $43 million or almost 33 percent.  Tobacco and alcohol taxes were both down for the month at -6.9 percent and -5 percent respectively.


 After nine months competed in FY2011 there are encouraging signs with total revenue up 9.4 percent or $959.9 million on total revenue of $11.2 billion.

  • Individual income taxes are up year-to-date 10.6 percent or $532.6 million.


  • Sales taxes are up 7 percent or $246 million and motor fuel taxes are up 14.2 percent or $85.5 million.


  • Corporate taxes are up 12.3 percent or $53.1 million, which is hopefully an indication of businesses’ profitability recovering. 


If you would like additional information regarding a specific piece of legislation, you may access the Georgia General Assembly website at

Please remember to contact me in my office on the issues that are affecting you and your area.  I am here to represent you and it is an honor for me to work on your behalf.  As always, I’d like to thank members of the Senate staff, who contribute regularly to my column.

Sen. Greg Goggans represents the 7th Senate District, which includes Atkinson, Bacon, Berrien, Clinch, Coffee, Echols, Lanier, Pierce and Ware counties and a portion of Cook County.


For Immediate Release:
April 11, 2011
For Information Contact:
Matt Colvin, Broadcast Director

South Georgia at the State Capitol

 By State Sen. Greg Goggans


On Wednesday the Senate approved its version of HB 78, the FY2012 Budget, by a vote of 47-4. This concludes the Senate stage of the process, and the bill will now go to conference committee for finalization.

While revenues are leveling and the General Assembly has worked hard to decrease the size of government and cut waste, this year we are dealing with the loss of federal stimulus funds and our “Rainy Day” reserve which have aided in the balancing of previous year’s shortfalls. Continue reading “South Georgia at the State Capitol”

South Georgia at the State Capitol

 By State Sen. Greg Goggans


 Yesterday, the Special Joint Committee on Revenue Structure met to discuss possible changes to Georgia’s tax laws in response to the report published earlier this year by the Special Council on Tax Reform. Currently, there are four House Bills, HB 385 through 388, that contain the recommendations of the council, and these have caused some confusion and consternation as of late. The fact of the matter is that these bills and the recommendations in them were required to be introduced by the resolution establishing the council, and may not necessarily reflect the preferences and priorities of the legislature. Continue reading “South Georgia at the State Capitol”