Freddie Powell Sims offers support for education-related budget proposals

Partisanship may be at a fever pitch in Georgia, with the eyes of the nation tuned to drama ensnaring Atlanta-area District Attorney Fani Willis and former President Donald Trump.

But in the Capitol, there are some points of consensus.

Democratic Sen. Freddie Powell Sims, in a message to constituents updating on weeks one and two of the General Assembly Legislative Session, celebrated what she described as “substantial investments” in public education.

“Last week, Governor Brian P. Kemp delivered his annual State of the State address, a roadmap outlining his legislative and budgetary priorities for this year’s Legislative Session. Among the proposals is a plan to initiate a $2,500 salary increase for teachers and additional public school personnel beginning in July 2025,” Sims wrote, referencing the state’s Republican Governor.

The second week — last week — was Budget Week, an assembling of 16 members of the House and Senate to hear pitches from various agency leaders about what their funding needs are. She noted budget allocations in the current budget proposal such as $12 million to bolster literacy, $104 million for school safety and $237 million for the renovation and construction of new schools.

“These educational proposals hold promise for elevating Georgia’s educational landscape. Beginning with the salary increase for educators, these measures not only acknowledge but also celebrate the dedication of our teachers while actively enticing and retaining top talent,” Sims wrote.

“Moreover, the allocation of funds to improve literacy rates, enhance school safety and facilitate the construction of modern learning environments reflects a holistic and unwavering commitment to education.”

“This comprehensive strategy prioritizes fundamental skills, student safety and contemporary educational settings, collectively steering us toward a more robust and effective educational system in the state,” she added.

The 40-day Legislative Session began Jan. 8. Sims said she welcomes constituents’ questions and concerns, to be directed to her legislative office.

Sims represents the Dawson area of Georgia.

Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. In early 2022, she left the business to serve as Communications Director for St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch. After leaving the administration, Janelle briefly worked as a communications consultant for candidates, businesses and non-profits, before accepting her position as Publisher for Southeast Politics, a homecoming of sorts to her Florida Politics roots, where she served as a reporter and editor for several years. Janelle has also held roles covering the intersection of politics and business for the Tampa Bay Business Journal and general assignment news with an emphasis on social justice and climate change for WMNF Community Radio, where she also hosted a political call-in show under several names, including Last Call, Midpoint and The Scoop. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected]

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