One bit of news: When Gov. Sonny Perdue visited the House on the last night of the session, he was invited there by Speaker of the House Glenn Richardson, according to the speaker's office.
When you add in all the federal money, the legislature passed a $35.4 billion budget* Friday. I haven't read it yet. Have you?
It will be interesting to see how many times the word "failure" is used in post-session analysis pieces, and how much of the "failure" to hammer out a new transportation funding agreement is unfairly laid at Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle's feet, since he's the only guy involved running for governor.
Any way, a "failure" to charge an extra $25 billion in taxes isn't much of a failure for folks who don't like taxes. I know that used to include the Republican Party...
As for the transportation governance bill, Speaker Richardson played that masterfully. I'm not sure the changes they passed are actually constitutional, though, so we'll see who has the last laugh there.
As the session was wrapping up late Friday night, Richardson's spokesman was telling reporters it was merely halftime on transportation funding. With another session to go before the 2010 elections, I suppose that's accurate, if unfulfilling for those who favored a new tax.
I did a video full of mostly in focus pictures from the session, but it's only for you hard-core state political junkies.
Much like the session, it gets kind of good at the end. And then it ends.
Also, it begins with Knowshon Moreno and Matt Stafford declaring for the NFL draft, which seemed the proper place to start.
On a related note, please purchase the music of Widespread Panic. All images by me, except the Knowshon picture, which was taken by Brian Huff.
* As noted in the comments, the Georgia Public Policy Foundation is using a different figure for the 2010 budget. It's $3 billion different, and we're both right, which ought to tell you something right there.
Kelly McCutchen with GPPF said the difference is how you deal with intra-state transfers, and that he prefers the larger number of $38.8 billion because it's a better match with audited statements from past revenues and expenditures.
I used the "total public funds" figure from the 2010 budget bill available through the state Senate Web site.