ATLANTA, GA (WALB) - The Georgia Legislature has OK'ed two big ticket items for Albany in the Fiscal Year 2017 Budget Appropriations, and that brought smiles from three elected officials in the region.
Albany Democrat State Representatives Winfred Dukes and Darrel Ealum, and Cuthbert Republican Gerald Greene were thrilled that funding for Northwest Public Library in Albany and for the fine arts center for Albany State University made the cut in Atlanta.
The General Assembly passed the final version of the budget on Tuesday, and it will go to Governor Nathan Deal for consideration.
"This has been a truly successful session for Dougherty Co. and the surrounding area," said Rep. Greene. "Thank you to Governor Deal and the members of the General Assembly for their diligent work on the FY2017 budget allocations. These much needed funds will bring continued growth in education and economic development to our area, and we look forward to the opportunities that these facilities will present."
"We are grateful for the generous funding Dougherty Co. received during the budget process," said Rep. Dukes. "I also think it speaks volumes to our Dougherty delegation, including our state senator, of our effectiveness and ability to work together for the citizens of our region. This funding will provide increased educational opportunities for our students, and I look forward to seeing the positive results it produces."
"This is a great day for Albany and all of Dougherty Co.," said Rep. Ealum. "Our delegation has worked persistently to bring funding for these projects to our area, and we are thrilled to begin work with the allocations from the FY2017 budget. I would like to thank the members of our delegation for their hard work and cooperation, as well as my colleagues in the House and Senate for ensuring that this funding was included in the final budget."
The FY2017 budget allocates $2,000,000 toward renovations for the Northwest Public Library in Albany. It also allocates an additional $2,100,000 in bonds for construction of a new fine arts center for Albany State University.
In February, Dougherty County also received $1,100,000 in the Amended Fiscal Year 2016 budget to station the Georgia National Guard on board the Marine Corps Logistics Base in Albany. That project could begin as early as July 1, 2016.
- Representative Winifred Dukes represents the citizens of District 154, which includes Baker County, as well as portions of Dougherty, Miller, and Seminole counties. He was elected into the House of Representatives in 1996, and currently serves on the Agriculture & Consumer Affairs, Economic Development & Tourism, Special Rules, and State Planning & Community Affairs committees.
- Representative Darrel Ealum represents the citizens of District 153, which includes portions of Dougherty County. He was elected into the House of Representatives in 2014, and currently serves on the Defense & Veterans Affairs, Human Relations & Aging, and State Properties committees.
- Representative Gerald Greene represents the citizens of District 151, which includes Calhoun, Clay, Early, Quitman, Randolph, Stewart, Terrell, and Webster counties, as well as portions of Dougherty County. He was elected into the House of Representatives in 1982, and serves as the Chairman of the Code Revision Committee and Secretary of the State Properties Committee. He is also a member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Public Safety and the Economic Development & Tourism, Public Safety & Homeland Security, Retirement, and Rules committees.