• Matt Gurtler

Week 2: Budgets, Bills, and Basics


The second week has come to a close, and we need to talk about spending.

Georgia is getting ready to vote on the budget for the upcoming year as Governor Brian Kemp releases his budget recommendations for Fiscal Year 2021, totaling over $56 billion in spending when it is effectively matched dollar for dollar by the Federal government.

Remember; every time we take those federal dollars we directly contribute to the national debt which has surpassed $23 Trillion.

Yes, Trillion. That’s $23,000,000,000,000. Not to mention the unfunded liabilities and the fact that all of that is offset to future generations.

Over $28 billion of the 2021 budget includes state funding, which is up more than $1 billion from last year’s budget.

As I have consistently stated, state spending requires careful consideration of how your tax dollars are being allocated.

Last year I expressed concern about the ever-growing budget in Georgia, and this year is no different.

For this reason, I would like to review a few bills I introduced last year I will continue to fight for this session.

House Bill 4 is an essential piece of legislation that would bust this omnibus-style budgeting that congressional Democrats love so much, and break up the spending bill into 49 different sections that legislators could vote on individually.

Budgets should not be considered as an “all or nothing” deal, as this leads to voting for terrible spending habits while trying to fund essential and constitutional government departments.

The current omnibus-type of spending budget bill, therefore, is fiscally irresponsible, and only serves to expand government through spending a consistently increased amount of money each year.

House Bill 712 is also still active, which serves to give notice to you, the taxpayer, anytime government spending would require a tax increase.

Transparency is key to maintaining a limited government, and because your hard-earned money is being used to fund the government and its programs, you should be informed in advance of any changes in the amount you pay.

This bill not only aims at giving you better access to government budgets but also increases the notice period.

As of this upcoming budget, we only have Govenor Kemp’s recommendations.

Although he advocated for a 4% budget cut, his recommendations did not include any cuts to the portion of the budget that provides more than 50% of what Georgia spends each year, including the Board of Regents.

It further adds another $1 billion in debt bonds instead of a decrease.

I will be meeting with Gov. Kemp on Monday this upcoming week to discuss the budget and my bill HB-4 and will keep you informed as to what becomes of it.

Additionally, we have gotten more press on the gun bills currently active this session, including HB-2, Georgia’s Constitutional Carry Act.

On Saturday, January 15, CBS 46 aired a segment discussing Georgia’s pending gun legislation where I gave a statement on Georgia citizens’ right to carry without having to pay a tax for licensing to carry.

CBS also discussed some of my colleagues’ attempts at further infringements of your rights with bills such as SB 281. This bill aims to limit your access to a means of self-defense as Senator Donzella James calls these means “dangerous instrumentalities.”

She further states that she is pro-Second Amendment and is a gun owner herself, yet in the same breath speaks of restricting your access to the vast majority of guns Georgians currently possess and use for self-defense.

I will uphold my Oath to the Constitution to protect and defend our God-given rights.

In addition to HB-2, on which one of my interns wrote a legislative summary which is published in the Atlanta’s John Marshall Law Journal, I have also co-sponsored HB 751, the Anti-Red Flag - Second Amendment Conservation Act to preserve your due process rights.

As well this, I will continue fighting the infringements of your self-defense rights.

Because Gov. Kemp has previously endorsed Constitutional Carry, I will work diligently in Monday’s meeting trying to get these two bills moving forward this session.

It is my greatest honor to serve you in my efforts to limit government and preserve our liberties. I aim at keeping you informed each week as this year’s session moves forward.

P.S. If you would like your children or grandchildren to Page during the 2020 legislative session please reply to this email or reach out to my office.

In Liberty,

Matt Gurtler

(706) 490-2285