Tax Break for Teachers

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There’s good news for Georgia teachers; a new proposal by Gov. Perdue will allow them to claim an extra tax credit for out of pocket expenses in the classroom.

Julie Scott, a second grade teacher, says the No Child Left Behind Act makes her responsible for a lot more in the classroom, and now she goes beyond conventional methods of teaching.

Julie says, "Around the classroom we have different focuses, such as our learning wall our kids are working on. Being able to provide outside resources really helps them retain that knowledge."

Scott says she spends on average $20 to $30 a week out of her pocket for extra supplies. Gov. Perdue has proposed a new tax credit to offset those costs. He wants to provide a $250 tax deduction for teachers. This proposal comes at a time when Gov. Perdue says under federal legislation, teachers were in jeopardy of losing their tax credit.

Gov. Perdue says, "We want to make sure that our teachers could have that tax cut retroactively and claim it on their 2004 tax return. They are dedicating themselves to preparing our future but we don't want them to have to spend their own money without getting it back."

Julie Scott adds, "Oh, this is an early Christmas present for myself and teachers across the state of Georgia."

Perdue says this is his way of saying thank you to teachers on behalf of what they do to provide quality education to Georgia's children.

The tax credit will cost the state $1.5 million a year. The proposal will go before the General Assembly in January.