On behalf of the Georgia State Financing and Investment Commission, I would like to welcome you to our State’s new investor relations website. We appreciate your interest and investment in bonds issued by the State, as it allows us to make critical investments in public infrastructure throughout our state. We are committed to maintaining our strong bond ratings, and we are also committed to being as transparent as possible with the investor community and public at large.
I hope you find this website useful as you seek to better understand the credit fundamentals of our State. Please do not hesitate to contact our office with suggestions for how we can be doing better. Thanks again for your interest in our bond program.
| Atlanta, GA – Today Governor Brian P. Kemp announced Georgia again secured the highest ratings of AAA with a stable outlook from the three main credit rating agencies: Fitch, Moody’s, and Standard & Poor’s (S&P). Of the states that issue general obligation bonds, only nine currently meet this standard. Georgia’s upcoming general obligation bond sale will fund over $997 million in capital projects. The Peach State's AAA rating allows for the lowest possible interest costs when going to market next week.
“This announcement is great news for Georgia, demonstrating our commitment to fiscal balance and ensuring we can meet our present and future obligations. Maintaining the Peach State's AAA bond rating is one of my highest priorities as governor, and I am proud that we again secured this important distinction,” said Governor Kemp. “Our fiscal leadership means that our bonds are highly attractive to investors, and as a result, enables the state to save taxpayers millions of dollars each year with low interest rates for borrowing.
"This rating emphasizes the strength of our economy and shows companies that we are a well-managed, reliable state in which to invest.”
Fitch, Moody’s, and S&P cited the strength of Georgia’s economy with a positive employment trend, growth of the state’s rainy day fund, a balanced approach to primary revenue sources, and consistent funding of obligations as factors contributing to AAA ratings. The credit rating agencies’ individual ratings are Aaa, AAA and AAA, respectively, which are the highest ratings available and indicative of sound fiscal management.
Bond Rating Agency Report Excerpts
“Georgia's 'AAA' Long-term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) reflects the state's conservative debt management, proven willingness and ability to maintain fiscal balance and a broad-based and expanding economy with job growth outpacing national trends. The state proactively addressed weakened revenues during the great recession through steep spending cuts and draws from its rainy-day fund (the revenue shortfall reserve [RSR]). Since then, Georgia has maintained a conservative approach to fiscal management, by limiting spending growth and making progress in rebuilding the RSR balance. … Georgia’s long-term liability burden is low… While the state issues bonds regularly for capital needs, amortization of principal is rapid. Additionally, Georgia fully funds its actuarially determined contributions (ADCs) for pensions and the net pension liability is a low burden on resources.”
Moody’s Investors Service:
“Georgia's (Aaa stable) strong credit profile reflects relatively low debt and pension obligations and robust fiscal management and governance. … Georgia's economic growth has driven revenue growth … The revenue out-performance has strengthened Georgia's finances and has contributed to the persistent build-up in its rainy day fund, the revenue shortfall reserve. … Georgia's long-term liabilities are moderate, and unlikely to grow to a level that pressures the state's budget. … The state’s approach to debt management reflects Georgia’s commitment to maintaining an affordable debt burden. … Georgia's strong governance framework and financial management practices have helped to support the state's rating over many years.”
S&P Global Ratings:
“The AAA rating reflects our view of the state’s well-diversified and broad-based economic growth that is outpacing that of the nation; strong financial monitoring and oversight with a history of budget adjustments, mainly through expenditure reductions, to restore fiscal balance; additional flexibility provided by continued growth in the revenue shortfall reserve (RSR); moderate debt position bolstered by rapid amortization; and proactive management of long-term liabilities through full funding of the state's portion of pension contributions and the creation of other postemployment benefit (OPEB) fund reserves… Georgia’s credit fundamentals remain strong, anchored by continued economic growth.”
May Net Tax Revenue Up 0.1%
Atlanta, GA - Georgia’s May net tax collections totaled almost $1.76 billion for an increase of just over $1 million, or 0.1 percent, compared to May 2018. Year-to-date, net tax collections totaled $21.67 billion for an increase of $940.7 million, or 4.5 percent, compared to the previous fiscal year (FY) when net tax revenues totaled nearly $20.73 billion.
The changes within these tax categories explain May’s overall net tax revenue increase:
Individual Income Tax: Individual Income Tax collections totaled $887.1 million for an increase of roughly $3.3 million, or 0.4 percent, compared to last year when Income Tax collections totaled $883.8 million.
These components within Individual Income Tax combine for the net increase:
▪ Individual Income Tax refunds issued (net of voided checks) were down $14.1 million, or -8.1 percent.
▪ Individual Income Tax Return payments were up $31.2 million, or 89.9 percent, over last year.
▪ Individual Withholding payments for the month decreased by $45.9 million or -4.7 percent.
▪ All other categories, including Estimated Income Tax payments, were up a combined $3.9 million.
Sales and Use Tax: Gross Sales and Use Tax collections totaled roughly $1.05 billion during the month for an increase of $69.3 million, or 7.1 percent, over May 2018. Net Sales and Use Tax increased by nearly $13.7 million, or 2.8 percent, compared to last year when net sales tax totaled $494.6 million. The adjusted Sales Tax distribution to local governments increased nearly $57.2 million, or 12.1 percent, from last year for a May distribution total of $530.3 million. Sales Tax Refunds decreased by $1.5 million, or -18.8 percent, compared to FY 2018.
Corporate Income Tax: Corporate Income Tax collections totaled $41.3 million, for an increase of $2.6 million, or 6.7 percent, over last year when corporate tax collections totaled $38.7 million.
The following components within Corporate Income Tax comprise the net increase:
▪ Corporate Income Tax refunds (net of voids) decreased by $4.5 million, or -32 percent, from last year.
▪ Corporate Income Tax Return payments increased by $12.9 million, or 106.2 percent, for the month.
▪ All other Corporate Tax types, including S-Corp tax payments, were down a combined $14.8 million.
Motor Fuel Taxes: Motor Fuel Tax collections increased by nearly $1.2 million, or 0.8 percent, compared to FY 2018.
Motor Vehicle - Motor Vehicle Tag & Title Fees fell by approximately $7.7 million, or -23.8 percent, while Title Ad Valorem Tax (TAVT) collections increased by roughly $3 million, or 4 percent, compared to May 2018.
Governor Kemp Signs Fiscal Year 2020 Budget
May 10, 2019
Atlanta, GA - Today, Governor Brian P. Kemp signed the fiscal year 2020 budget. Joined by lawmakers, law enforcement officials, educators, and local leaders in Camilla, Georgia, Governor Kemp's signature of the balanced budget caps a historic first legislative session.
"This budget demonstrates our priorities as a state, reflects our core values, and signals the bright future ahead for all Georgians," said Governor Kemp. "For the second year in a row, our state fully-funded public education. With the support of the General Assembly, this budget delivers a well-deserved - and long overdue - educator pay raise of $3,000, the largest in state history.”
"I am confident these bold investments will enhance educational outcomes and yield huge dividends for our students and our state in the future.
"The 2020 budget reaffirms our strong commitment to lead on healthcare and put patients - not the status quo - first. This year, we are supporting seven long-term, acute care hospitals, three rehabilitation facilities, and providing additional resources for residency spots for family physicians, while also expanding medical school class sizes at Augusta University and the University of Georgia by 50%. These investments are further supported by funds for a Center of Excellence on Maternal Mortality at the Morehouse School of Medicine.
"We have also included additional funding for children's health services, investments in behavioral health, additional meals for the elderly, and more resources for children in foster care.
"I ran for governor on a single promise: to put hardworking Georgians first. That's exactly what the 2020 budget does; it builds on our strengths, addresses the challenges ahead, and ensures opportunity for all Georgians - no matter where they live."
Lt. Governor Geoff Duncan:
“Eleven million Georgians expect our policies to enhance education, economic development, and health care. The FY 2020 budget – which passed the Georgia Senate unanimously – recognizes those priorities by fully funding our K – 12 education system, raising educator pay, promoting innovative approaches to technological learning, advancing health care reform measures, and funding programs which prepare our state for long-term success.
"I want to thank Governor Kemp, Speaker Ralston, and the Appropriations Chairmen in both chambers for their commitment and dedication to passing a priority-driven budget that will significantly improve the State of Georgia.”
Speaker David Ralston:
“The FY2020 budget reflects our commitment to investing for the future by upgrading our voting technology, funding infrastructure improvements and, especially, rewarding our dedicated teachers and state employees,” said Speaker Ralston. “Building off Governor Kemp’s vision of putting Georgians first and working with Lt. Governor Duncan, we have arrived at a budget that will keep Georgia winning.
"My thanks to House Appropriations Chairman Terry England and the members of his committee as well as their counterparts in the Senate for all their hard work on behalf of our General Assembly.”
Cody Hall, Press Secretary firstname.lastname@example.org