by T.A. DeFeo
The state House voted 105-64 to pass House Bill 518, changing the required rate of unemployment insurance contributions that support the Georgia Department of Labor.
The measure lowers the administrative assessment businesses pay from 2.7 percent to 2.64 percent. It reverts to 2.7 percent after Dec. 31, 2026.
The measure includes some contribution variations for businesses that meet certain criteria.
“HB 518 would ensure the Georgia Department of Labor can adequately cover their administrative costs,” State Rep. Mike Cameron, R-Rossville, said in an announcement.
Meanwhile, the State Senate voted 34-21 in favor of a similar measure, Senate Bill 160.
Bill expands state employees’ access to health savings accounts
The Georgia Senate passed Senate Bill 199, giving the Department of Administrative Services the authority to offer health savings accounts as a pre-tax deduction for state employees, including teachers.
Under the measure, HSA funds would roll over from one year to the next and are eligible for investment.
“As a former educator, I am especially proud that this legislation will give state employees, including teachers, the opportunity to build wealth and plan for the future,” State Sen. Jason Esteves, D-Atlanta, said in an announcement.
House votes to eliminate the Georgia Higher Education Assistance Corporation
The Georgia House unanimously voted to abolish the Georgia Higher Education Assistance Corporation.
House Bill 319 abolishes the agency as of June 30, 2024. The measure transferred the agency’s outstanding obligations and liabilities to the Georgia Student Finance Authority.
In a constituent newsletter, State Rep. Chuck Martin, R-Alpharetta, said the agency “is no longer needed.” With the action, the state returns up to $25 million “for use in funding students in higher education,” Martin added.
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T.A. DeFeo is a regular contributor to The Center Square.
Photo “Mike Cameron” by Mike Cameron GA House District 1. Background Photo “Georgia Capitol” by DXR. CC BY-SA 4.0.