Budget 101

David Shafer gives some insight into the state budget, including that 60% of revenue is spent on education.

  • 39% on K-12 education (mostly teacher salaries)
  • 15% on low income health care (Medicaid, Peachcare)
  • 12% on colleges and technical schools (almost all to the Board of Regents)
  • 10% on law enforcement (mostly for prisons but also courts, juvenile justice, State Patrol and GBI)
  • 5% on bond payments for construction of schools, colleges, and prisons
  • 4% on transportation
  • 3% on HOPE scholarships
  • 2% on Pre-K vouchers
  • Remaining 10% on everything else


  1. Jmac says:

    Is the three percent for HOPE administrative fees? Or is that counting the lottery revenue coming in and that scholarship money going out?

    I ask because you’d think it would be higher.

  2. It inclues the lottery revenue coming in and the scholarship money going out.

    The HOPE and Pre-K line items are paid entirely from the lottery. The transportation line item is paid mostly from the gas tax but also includes general revenue.

  3. GBPI says:

    If you are interested in a detailed breakdown of the 2007 Amended and 2008 state budget please see the folowing report “Governor’s Proposed FY 2007 Amended Budget and FY 2008 Budget” posted at http://www.gbpi.org. On page 5 are several tables that breakdown state funding. Ninty -six percent of the state budget (not including federal funds) is spent on Education, Medicaid and Peachcare, Criminal Justice, DHR, transportation, Debt Service, and the Homeowners Tax Relief Grant.

    Alan Essig
    Executive Director, GBPI

  4. RuralDem says:

    Could someone edit the GBPI link posted above? The “.” at the end is attached to the end of the URL which leads to an invalid hostname.

    Thanks for the link.

  5. IndyInjun says:

    Has anything at all been done to address the unfunded liability of the state employee medical benefit program. There was some publicity early in January that this was something on the order of $1.5 billion, which is a very large budgetary impact.

    The state employees and retirees were immediately up in arms, so the legislature is walking on eggshells.

    As a taxpayer who has to pay for his own health insurance, which has been going up 15 to 20% per year, I oppose any tax increase to pay for someone else’s costs.

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