Notes from the Senate

by | September 5, 2005 12:00 am

By SENATOR JACK HILL, 4th DISTRICT

BY SENATOR JACK HILL, 4th DISTRICT

Georgia by the Numbers

Interesting Facts, Rankings and Statistics about Georgia

* 2.5 billion the number of lottery tickets sold in 2004.

* $60.8 million budget in state funds for TANF (welfare children) assistance (total $156.8 million).

* Georgia has the 39th lowest tuition for research universities in the U.S. 41st for 2-year and 4-year colleges

* For every 1,000 girls aged 15-17, there is an average of 40 pregnancies in Georgia.

* 11The number of states with gambling casinos.

* 7The total number of states including Georgia which have a TripleAAA bond rating

* 118,677 Total of all state employees and Board of Regents employees (excludes teachers and employees of local school systems)

* Eight percent the number of Georgians who expressed support for a gasoline tax increase in a Georgia State University poll in the fall of 2004.

* Only California, Texas, New York, Florida, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Michigan have a higher population than Georgia, 8.8 million.

Georgia Rankings

* Georgia ranks second in the U.S. in freeway and main highway conditions (2003).

* Georgia is first in U.S. in broiler production, second in egg production, fourth in cotton and fifth in tomato production.

* Georgia ranks 24th in median housing value of $140,734.

* Georgia is 29th in median family income of $50,647.

* Georgia ranks 31st in the U.S. in the percent of households with computers and internet access (60.6 percent). Utah is #1 with 74.1 percent.

* Georgia is 35th in per capita state and local property taxes of $811.00. This means only 14 states have lower taxes per person.

* Georgia is ranked 18th in state and local tax burden as a percentage of income with 10 percent.

* Georgia is seventh in state lottery sales per person with $312.00.

* Georgia is only 40th in federal government expenditures per capita with $5,997. That means 39 states get more.

* Georgia is 47th in outstanding state debt per capita of $965 (N.C. is $1,340) FY 2002 data. That means Georgia has one of the lowest debt totals in the U.S.

* Georgia ranks 29th in the 10 year change in state expenditures of 22.2 percent per person (Mississippi is #1 at 48.8 percent). That means only 21 states have a lower increase.

* Georgia is 41st in federal pork funding per capita of $18.58.

* Georgia is 23rd in average expenditures for auto insurance with $703.00.

* Georgia is 27th in average homeowner’s insurance premiums of $471.00 (2001).

* Georgia ranks sixth in annual vehicle miles of travel per capita. (2003)

* Georgia at 16.3 percent, ranks 17th in the number of people without health insurance for the entire year.

* Georgia is tenth in infant mortality rate and tenth in the percent of live births to unwed mothers. (2003)

Breaking Down the July Revenues

After removing the extra days from this past July created from last year’s change in accounting practices, revenues for the month were actually up only 5.3 percent over July 2004. So, in real growth for the month, the state did not meet its budget of 6.0 percent growth.

Personal income collections rose 19.6 percent or $82 million for the month. Corporate income collections rose 88.6 percent or $10 million for the month. The state sales tax collections were up $73.5 million this past July or 19.1 percent from last year. Again, these numbers may be inflated due to accounting changes. Under old accounting practices, the Department of Revenue closed the book on a month two days before the end of the month. Last July only had 29 days, while this July had all 31 days counted for revenue purposes. The two extra days account for just over $120 million in collections. Months will match up for comparison during the remainder of the year. A JulyAugust combination will be more accurate.

Sources of Information

Ga. Lottery Financial Information Summary June 30, 2004, Dept. of Audits and Accounts

Board of Regents www.usg.edu

Fiscal Research Center at Ga. State University www.aysps.gsu.edu

The Taxpayers Network www.taxpayersnetwork. org

Georgia Department of Revenue www.gatax.org

I want to hear from you! I may be reached at 234 State Capitol, Atlanta, GA 30334 (404) 656-5038 (phone) (404) 657-7094 (fax) e-mail at jhill@legis.state.ga.us or Call Toll-Free 1-800-3673334 day or night. Reidsville: (912) 557-3811

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