Former Congressman Nathan Deal returned to Washington, D.C. on Thursday for the first time as governor-elect. Deal, along with the new class of governors, met President Barack Obama to discuss issues facing the states, including health care reform and shrinking state budgets.
Deal said he expressed his concerns about the expansion of Medicaid in Georgia and the impact of the health care reform bill on small businesses, but he walked away with the impression there will be no major changes to the bill before it`s implemented.
There will be no federal stimulus money to plug holes in the state budget next year and that could drive the deficit as high as $2 billion by some state estimates.
Deal said he charged his transition team to figure out areas of state government that can be consolidated and even eliminated.