A new report by State Budget Solutions, a 501(c)(3) educational organization, lists the Peach State’s total debt as just shy of $115.2 billion. Your share? $11,612.
The study breaks out the components making up the total debt. First is current outstanding debt (bonds, etc.) of $15,297,965,000, or 13.2% of the total. The largest share is outstanding pension liabilities of $84,975,358,000. Other post-employment benefits make up $14,625,000,000 and a loan from the federal government taken out during the recession to pay unemployment benefits accounts for the remaining $295,539.000.
How does Georgia compare with other states? We’re 11th in total state debt, 12th in outstanding debt, 11th in outstanding pension liabilities, other post-employment benefits, and unemployment trust fund loans. Other measures typically used to measure the fiscal soundness of a state show we’re not in danger territory. We are 38th in state debt per capita, and tied for 32nd with Utah in debt to state GDP (27%). Georgia ranks fifth among all states in debt as a percentage of FY 2012 expenditures at 633%.
You can view all the numbers and compare the rankings among all states in this spreadsheet.
I don’t remember hearing these figures during the Governor’s State of the State speech last week. But, as the General Assembly resumes work on passing a budget this morning, they ought to keep these numbers in mind.