Georgia’s House Republicans Approve Plan To Refund $1 Billion to State Income Tax Payers This Year

Toby Hazlewood

Gov. Kemp's plan to help with the cost-of-living crisis
Governor Brian KempPhoto byTwitter of BrianKempGA

On February 2, Republican legislators in Georgia's House approved plans that will see $2 billion in tax breaks for the peach state - including $1 billion in property taxes, and a further $1 billion that will be returned as an income tax rebate. The spending spree forms part of a $32.6 billion budget for the coming year.

The news means that state income tax payers could see a rebate of between $250 and $500 each. In 2022 Governor Kemp approved the payment of similar rebates which returned around $1 billion from the State's surplus to taxpayers last year too.

Giving back to the citizens of Georgia

Throughout 2022, Governor Kemp was keen to ensure that as much as possible was done to help Georgians deal with the cost of living crisis that has been ripping through the United Stated.

While cynics might feel that it was a political tactic by Kemp, to win popularity in the run up to the midterm election, the move was positioned as a way of giving back to citizens of the state at a time when inflation is rampant and the cost of living is proving hard for many to manage.

A side effect of course, was that it likely secured Governor Kemp a few more votes against his Democratic challenger - Stacey Abrams.

Commenting on the idea at the time, Kemp had this to say:

"I believe that isn't the government's money. It's yours and our job isn't to spend it all just because we can."

He continued:

"We want to give you, the citizens, your money back, because it's going to be more than we just need to spend on wasteful projects."

More help needed?

The tax rebates and the wider budget will now be debated by the Senate and there's still plenty of administration before Georgians can expect to see money being returned to their bank accounts. However, it's a step in the right direction, and one that many will welcome.

Last month saw the end of the sales tax rebates on gasoline in Georgia. While the price of oil and, correspondingly, gasoline has returned closer to the levels seen before the war in Ukraine began, drivers are still hurting from the cost of living crisis as inflation continues to be significantly higher than has been seen for many decades.

While gasoline may be dropping in price and state legislators are able to assist citizens with one-off cash payments to help them meet the cost of living, there's still much to do.

Last year Governor Kemp announced the High School kids in the Peach State will be given financial education as part of their schooling which may help future generations in being better prepared for the task of making financial ends meet. But right now, it seems that the regular infusions of cash are what more citizens need. As such, the recent suggestion of income tax rebates is likely to be welcomed by tax payers.

Do you think that the signs of a financial pinch are becoming less apparent? Are you still struggling as much as you were to make financial ends meet? Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below.

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