Governor Sonny Perdue announced that net revenue collections for the month of March 2010 (FY 2010) totaled $998,239,000 compared to $987,986,000 for March 2009 (FY09), an increase of $10,523,000 or 1 percent. This is the first monthly increase in revenues since November 2008.
"While we are always cautious about reading too much into a single month’s revenue report, the March numbers are certainly encouraging," Governor Perdue said. "Springtime in Georgia always brings us the Masters and the Braves’ opening day, and I am hopeful we are also seeing the first buds of economic recovery."
The percentage decrease year-to-date for FY10 compared to FY09 is 11.5 percent.
English-only driver’s license tests
Senate Bill 67, the bill to provide drivers’ license tests only in English, has passed the Senate and is being considered in the House. The bill was sponsored by Senator Jack Murphy (R-Cumming) and co-signed by Senator John Douglas (R-Social Circle). "The feeling among supporters of the bill is that if you don’t understand English, you will have problems reading road signs and obeying traffic laws," wrote Douglas. "The usual assortment of advocates for illegal immigrants are unhappy over the prospects of the bill becoming law but we see them working for virtually every left wing cause that comes across our desks."
Donating to kidney and lupus research
The Georgia House of Representatives passed House Bill 1272 on Crossover Day, March 26, by a vote of 147-10. Sponsored by State Representative Toney Collins (D-Conyers), the legislation allows taxpayers to make voluntary contributions to lupus and kidney disease research through individual income tax returns.
"Lupus and kidney disease are serious illnesses that affect thousands of Georgians," said Collins, one of three Democrats whose legislation passed on Crossover Day. "This legislation allows Georgians to support research for cures to these horrible illnesses by simply checking a box on their tax return."
HB 1272 establishes a Lupus and Kidney Disease Research Program Fund. Each Georgia individual income tax return form for taxable years beginning on or after January 1, 2010, will contain language offering taxpayers the opportunity to contribute to the fund. Tax payers can donate all or any part of their tax refund by checking a box that would authorize a reduction in their refund check, or by contributing any amount over and above the amount of taxes owed.
A description of the fund, purposes, and intended use of contributions will be contained in the instructions accompanying the individual income tax return. Contributions would only be used for research and administrative costs.
The legislation is now under consideration by the Senate.