Gov. Kemp Announces State Employee Retention Pay Supplement, New School Safety Funding

Tuesday, December 19th, 2023

Governor Brian P. Kemp – joined by First Lady Marty Kemp, Speaker Jon Burns, Chairman Matt Hatchett of the House Appropriations Committee – today announced a state employee retention pay supplement of $1,000 for each of the roughly 112,000 state employees and 196,000 educators and school support staff across the state. Governor Kemp also announced school safety funding that will be added to the yearly base budget and will provide every public school in Georgia $45,000 to use on personnel or infrastructure improvements that strengthen campus security.

"Throughout the pandemic, a summer of unrest, and the unprecedented challenges of the last several years, our state employees have worked hard, taken on additional challenges, remained committed to serving their fellow Georgians, and become more streamlined so we can remain the best state for opportunity," said Governor Brian Kemp. "This retention pay supplement will arrive during the holiday season, and it’s part of my administration’s way of showing our appreciation for all that they do."

Governor Kemp’s Amended FY 2024 budget submitted to the General Assembly in January will include approximately $330 million for these one-time pay supplements, including $202 million for K-12 teachers and school support staff. The budget will also include more than $100 million to provide ongoing annual funding for local K-12 schools for school security and safety.

“This additional investment in school safety will benefit every part of the state,” continued Governor Kemp, “and it’s just the latest action we’re taking to secure our classrooms and back our law enforcement. This new funding comes on top of the $7,000 teacher pay raise and historic K-12 funding levels we’ve put in place since I took office.”

Previously, Governor Kemp authorized two school safety grants, totaling $185 million. In 2019, the governor approved grants of $30,000 for every public school in the state to use as they saw fit to improve campus safety, followed by a second round of grants announced earlier this year equaling $50,000 per school.

“The safety and well-being of our students across the state is always my top priority,” shared Lt. Governor Burt Jones. “I want to thank Governor Kemp for his support of significant funding for local school safety initiatives and his leadership on this issue. I am looking forward to building on this announcement and enhancing school safety measures, as I outlined in my Georgia School Safety Initiative in October, and strengthening our commitment to making Georgia’s schools the safest in the nation”

"I’m proud to join Governor Kemp in providing additional funding for school safety initiatives as well as supplemental pay for our state employees,” said Speaker of the House Jon Burns. “We want every child in our state to have the opportunity to learn, grow and explore in a safe and secure environment, and this proposal will help ensure that happens. We also want to continue prioritizing our state employees who help deliver the critical services our state depends on. We look forward to working with our colleagues in the Senate to make these priorities a reality during the upcoming legislative session."