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Legislator outlines tax credit for private schools

It was legislation meant to provide a way for citizens and corporations a get a break on their state taxes and help offset the cost of student tuition at Georgia’s private schools. State Rep. David Casas (R-Lawrenceville) on May 25 spoke to parents at St. Paul Lutheran School in Peachtree City about the issues surrounding the Georgia Private School Tax Credit.

The Georgia Private School Tax Credit through House Bill 1133 was signed into law in 2008. House Bill 325, introduced this year and signed into law recently by Gov. Deal, raises the previous $50 million statewide limit on donations for education to $62.5 million.

Individuals can receive the tax credit when donating up to $1,000 while couples can receive the credit with donations up to $2,500. Corporations, said Casas, can receive credit for donating up to 75 percent of their tax liability.

The bottom line, said Casas, is “not about public schools and not about private schools. The main purpose of the bill and tax credit is to get students out of failing schools.”

Casas said the scholarships will not pay the entire cost of a given private school. The maximum scholarship amount a student can receive is approximately $8,000, he said.

Per state law, there are a number of non-profit Student Scholarship Organizations established to receive the donations and document them for the tax credit in conjunction with the Georgia Dept. of Revenue.

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