By RUSS BYNUM
SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) - Georgia schools that teach children from military families are bracing for a mid-year blow from the automatic budget cuts triggered in Washington.
While many of the $85 billion in automatic cuts wouldn't take effect until next school year, reductions to a program called Impact Aid are expected this spring. The program pays up to $38 million a year to 23 Georgia school districts that lose revenue because military bases and federal low-rent housing don't pay property taxes.
Georgia administrators expect to lose 7 to 8% of Impact Aid money this spring. In Liberty County, where neighboring Fort Stewart accounts for 40% of enrollment, assistant school superintendent Jason Rogers says schools could lose $720,000 or more. He says that money would pay for filling staff vacancies and school maintenance.
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