Capitol Update Week 1 – State of the State


Speaker David Ralston gaveled the House into the second regular session of the 154th General Assembly on Monday, January 8, 2018.

State of the State

Gov. Deal presents his eighth and final State of the State address.

On Thursday, Governor Nathan Deal delivered his eighth and final State of the State address to a joint session of the House and Senate. His presentation included an impressive list of accomplishments as well as a passionate, personal tribute to his wife of 51 years and Our First Lady Sandra Deal. After nearly forty years in public service to our state, Governor Deal will retire at the end of this term.

During Governor Deal’s tenure, our state’s unemployment rate has dropped from 10.4 percent to 4.3 percent, which is the lowest in over a decade; our state has added more than 675,000 private sector jobs; Georgia maintains a AAA bond rating and our Rainy Day Reserve Fund is approaching $2.5 billion; and various rating agencies have recognized Georgia as the No. 1 state for business five consecutive years.

Governor Deals complete State of the State address here.

Governor’s Budget Proposal

Governor Deal released his recommendations for the Amended Fiscal Year 2018 and Fiscal Year 2019 budgets this week.

The Amended FY 18 budget includes $102 million mid-term adjustment for K-12 education, over $50 million in healthcare funds, and $25 million for airport runway extension projects.

The proposed FY 19 budget includes $361 million for the Teacher’s Retirement System, $200 million in additional K-12 and University System educational investments, $300 million for Medicaid, child welfare, autism and other healthcare needs, and $100 million in bonds for bridge repair and maintenance projects.

Next week the House and Senate will conduct numerous budget hearings. The House website,, has several tools that may be useful to you throughout the legislative session: a live stream of House proceedings, live and archived committee meeting videos and detailed information on all legislation we are considering at your state Capitol.

Let me hear from you

Should you find yourself in Atlanta during the Session, please stop by and visit me at my Capitol office, and please call or email if you have any question or concerns regarding any state issue. My capitol office, phone, and email are listed below.

Thank you for allowing me to serve as your Representative,


Rep. Brett Harrell, 106th
613 Coverdell Legislative Office Building
Atlanta, GA 30334