Great news! As a Coalition Partner, the SGA has received the following update from Kaye Minchew and Ken Thomas, Co-Chairs of the Coalition to Preserve the Georgia Archives.
With the end of the Georgia Legislature on March 28, the following was achieved:
1. The bill to transfer the administration of the Georgia Archives to the Board of Regents was passed by both houses of the Georgia legislature unanimously and goes to the Governor’s desk for signature. (We hope there will be a signing ceremony, but no word at this point.) The transfer is effective July 1. The Georgia Archives will stay at its location in Morrow, Georgia in its award winning and state of the art facility.
2. The State Budget, after the conference committee met, included $300,000 more for the Georgia Archives than the Governor originally proposed in January. This should include money for more staff members, and the Archives is expected to be open another day or so. Those decisions are up to the Board of Regents, University System of Georgia, and the Georgia Archives to decide as the transfer takes shape. Do not expect things to change immediately.
This has taken a lot of time and effort since the unexpected announcement on September 13 by Secretary of State Kemp that the great treasures of Georgia history would only be open by appointment. Thanks to the efforts of supporters from across the state, nation, and even the world, the Governor granted extra funds so that the Archives has remained open on Fridays and Saturdays to researchers and visitors. They will continue that schedule until new hours are announced.
Many thanks to all those who have worked so hard since September to keep the Georgia Archives open and to get money back in the budget. We achieved much this year. We must remember, however, that even with this money, they are not back to where they were even a year ago. It will take time to add more staff and become a more viable operation.
Thank you again for your hard work!