Cash found to keep Georgia archives open ’til June 30

You librarians, historians, archivists and genealogists out there – put down those pitchforks.

Here’s the press release – but you’ll see that it doesn’t address the issue of seven archivists slated to lose their jobs at the end of this month. That still looks to be up in the air:

Gov. Nathan Deal and Secretary of State Brian Kemp announced today that the state will restore $125,000 to Kemp’s budget to keep the Georgia State Archives open to Georgians for the remainder of the budget year.

“Georgia’s Archives are a showcase of our state’s rich history and a source of great pride,” said Deal. “I worked quickly with my budget office and Secretary Kemp to ensure that Georgians can continue to come to Morrow to study and view the important artifacts kept there. I appreciate Secretary Kemp’s commitment to work with me to find a solution.”

The extra funding provides for Georgia State Archives to be open to the public through June 30 of next year. On July 1, the Georgia Archives will be transferred to University System of Georgia, pending approval of the move by the General Assembly. This transfer will include appropriations required for operation and assets of the Georgia Archives. Additional staff will be provided by USG at that time. Deal and Kemp intend to find efficiencies by consolidating the Archives under the University System of Georgia, just as the state has sought to do with the library system.

“From the beginning of this budget process, I have stated that it was my hope that current access to the Archives could be maintained,” Kemp said. “I greatly appreciate Governor Deal’s leadership and recognize the difficult decisions that had to be made in order to identify this funding. He has proposed a plan that supports Archives not just this year, but for years to come.”

Deal’s budgetary commitment allows Georgia State Archives to maintain its current access hours.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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20 comments Add your comment

Fulton Observer

October 18th, 2012
3:35 pm

The archives are being taken from Brian Kemp and transferred to the University System of Georgia.

Sounds similar to the Mark Butler/Department of Labor story this past year. Guess Brian Kemp couldn’t handle managing a library – so the Governor is looking to place it in more capable hands.

Joe

October 18th, 2012
3:45 pm

Who is Brian Kemp?

Romney fan

October 18th, 2012
3:53 pm

@ Joe

He’s the GA Secretary of State. Thought he was a conservative – clearly not according to the way he’s managing our tax dollars.

Georgia

October 18th, 2012
4:33 pm

Are there binders in the Georgia archives?

Scott Fresno

October 18th, 2012
4:43 pm

If Archives is being taken away from him, does this mean Kemp won the battle but lost the war? Or is he happy to see it go?

[...] archives will then transfer to the state’s university system. It’s unclear to me and others whether the staffing cuts are part of this agreement. h/t Tammy [...]

Rafe Hollister

October 18th, 2012
5:19 pm

If $125,000 will fund its operation for 8 months, then I suggest they cut increases to salaries for the fat cats at the Board of Regents and the Administrators at UGA and GT by 2% and there you go, money for a years operations. Those people are way overpaid, for what they contribute anyway.

Buford T. Justice

October 18th, 2012
5:42 pm

The legislature required the SOS to take on more responsibilities and cut the office’s budget. It was a question of doing a lot more with less. There are other services more important to the operation of the state than keeping the Archives open 6 days a week. If you’re between a rock and a hard place, you make the best choice to serve the state, even if it’s an unpopular one. Courage versus cowardice is what we need from our elected officials.

sheepdawg

October 18th, 2012
5:46 pm

morons elected by morans

mehlman rings twice

October 18th, 2012
6:47 pm

Nothing says election year like finding extra cash. Sort of like finding extra cash to pave freeways.

hiram

October 18th, 2012
8:23 pm

You can keep the state’s archives open 6 months for 1/3 of the inexperienced cronie’s wife’s annual salary, who was just appointed by Shady to run the state’s lottery? I will predict that the same clueless voters who elected Sonny twice, will re-elect Shady by a landslide. If ignorance is bliss, Georgia is one of the most blissful places on earth.

Smartdawg

October 18th, 2012
8:48 pm

Thanks, @Buford! Tough economic times call for tough decisions from leaders, and Kemp chose the courageous path. Can you imagine the fallout if he had cut staff from the licensing board or corporations? Unemployment is bad enough in Georgia already!

Citizen Jane

October 18th, 2012
10:02 pm

Buford- Did you miss something? The Archives wasn’t open 6 days a week.
The Georgia Archives is a govt agency that in less than 10 years has gone from a staff of 82 to 10 and had their budget cut by millions of dollars… but still functioned!. Someone should give those employees an award – not a pink slip!
I guess if you are between a rock and a hard place, it is okay to pay 2.7 million a year rent for a building stored full of records that no-one can see so you can save $745,000. That makes about as much sense as issuing a press release stating you have to cut $745000 from your budget so are forced to close the Archives on Nov 1 2012 and then issuing a press release stating that the Gov gave you $124,000 so now you can keep the Archives open until July 1 2013.
The man was elected “Secretary” of State. He is supposed to protect the records of the people of Georgia! I am not even going to try to figure out how you came up with “courageous” to describe his short-sighted decision

SmarterDog

October 18th, 2012
10:29 pm

@ Smartdawg – Kemp chose the courageous path? Was he fighting a dragon or something I missed?

What was courageous about chopping the archives? Interesting theory you have on unemployment. Let’s just give everyone a government job – and just like magic – no more unemployment….

Karl Marx

October 19th, 2012
6:32 am

Great! I still will not vote for Brian Kemp ever, or Gary Black, or John Barge. Libertarians here is your chance….

Buford T. Justice

October 19th, 2012
6:48 am

@Citizen what does protection of records have to do with access? I don’t know what the rent is and will accept your number of $225,000 per month as accurate for the purpose of responding, but it sounds that number would include a lot more than rent and would include all operations costs, etc. Anyway rent implies a written lease and operations costs, which would include protection, are fixed costs. Making decisions you know won’t be popular and that will result in folks raising cain is courageous to me. Perhaps you have another definition.

Oldman45

October 19th, 2012
7:41 am

Libertarians have no chance in Georgia. Sorry…but true.

Puerile Pedant

October 19th, 2012
8:31 am

They have libraries in Georgia?

Wouldn’t have guessed that based on the IQ of your typical (GOP or Dem) State Senator, Representative, Congressman or Governor.

Dennis

October 19th, 2012
8:51 am

UGA does not need the Archives. It is fairly geographicaly central where it is. Leave it alone. Some great and helpful over-worked folks work there.

Pompano

October 19th, 2012
9:15 am

Hey Jim – I noticed that the AJC took down the latest article on Alford being named Lottery Director. So did you guys get a call from the Governor too?