ATLANTA (WSAV) – Money was on the mind of Georgia lawmakers this week as they worked on ways to fund infrastructure projects all around the state.
State lawmakers say part of Georgia’s budget will propose funding for roads, bridges and transportation.
“Certainly in my area where the Hyundai plant is being built and all the other associated infrastructure and support that is there,” said State Sen. Ben Watson (R-Savannah). “[The Georgia Department of Transportation] is already planning and helping with that because there will be 8,000 employees there and there will be trucks bringing in structure and infrastructure relating to building cars.”
Lawmakers say expanding rural internet will provide small business owners access to connection.
“As we open up our infrastructure, people are going through more small towns,” said State Rep. Brian Price (D-Augusta). “We’re trying to get them off the main highways but they have to have some type of infrastructure so they can still communicate back to their base or to their companies to make sure they know where they are and they can deliver products on time.”
One solution, lawmakers say, is to offer tax incentives to attract companies and drive dollars into the economy.
“I’m a small business owner, so the tax incentives are something that’s attractive and having the ability to grow business and not be burdened down with some of the high taxes allows us to hire more employees and bring more people in,” State Rep. Brent Cox (R-North Georgia) said. “So I think that’s a significant piece that allows us to have a thriving economy.”
Lawmakers say rural broadband expansion will allow schools, businesses and citizens to be connected and communicate more efficiently.