Gov. Nathan Deal delivers final State of the State address

ATLANTA (WSAV) — Gov. Nathan Deal delivered his final State of the State Address on Thursday.

He laid out the groundwork for future work in his final year but also took time to reflect on words from an old story.

“I’m not planting this tree for me, I’m planting it for those who come after me,” Gov. Deal said, choking back tears.

Gov. Deal highlighted some economic achievements, including Georgia’s 4.3% unemployment rate — the lowest in over ten years.

READ: Full transcript of the State of the State address

In addition, he noted the revitalization of Georgia’s film industry.

“Just 10 years ago this industry generated 241 million in economic impact for our state,” Gov. Deal said, adding, “This past fiscal year alone it generated $9.5 of economic impact.”

While the Republican governor spoke of his commitment to education spending and criminal justice reform, minority leaders said there were missed opportunities.

“He’s done some very positive things, but I certainly have been disappointed on what we’ve done in healthcare; what we’ve done in education,” explained Sen. Steve Henson, Democratic leader.

But Gov. Deal says he’s not done. “I want to be clear this is not my obituary, nor a farewell address,” he joked.

He is proposing a $50 billion state spending plan that doesn’t include any major shifts in state priorities.

Gov. Deal has been leading Georgia since 2011. The next governor will be elected in November of this year.

Story info: AP, WGCL/CNN

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