Opinion AGO 94-22.

Case Date:August 29, 1994
Georgia Attorney General Opinions 1994. Opinion AGO 94-22. August 29, 1994OFFICIAL OPINION 1994-22To: The Adjutant General Department of DefenseRe: Appropriations of state funds to the Department of Defense which are not spent or committed by written contract lapse at the end of the fiscal year notwithstanding the provision for a continuing "military fund" in O.C.G.A. § 38-2-170; non-appropriated donations to the Department of Defense and armory rentals do not lapse.You have requested that I determine whether appropriations for the Department of Defense should be made to the "military fund" created by O.C.G.A. § 38-2-170 and whether uncommitted appropriations should continue there at the end of the fiscal year without lapsing into the treasury. You have also asked whether "non-appropriated funds of the Department of Defense, (i.e., donations and rental fees)" must lapse into the treasury at the end of the fiscal year. The present Code provides for the creation of the military fund as follows: The General Assembly shall appropriate from time to time a sufficient sum of money . . . for the purpose of paying the expenses incident to carrying out [the Code chapter on "Military Affairs"]. All money so appropriated . . . shall continue and be kept in the state treasury as a separate fund to be known as the "military fund." None of the moneys placed in the military fund shall be converted into the general fund of the state treasury, and no part of the military fund shall be used for any purpose except as shall be authorized by law. O.C.G.A. § 38-2-170. The military fund was first authorized by Georgia Laws 1916, p. 158. Since that time, changes in the Georgia Constitution have imposed controls which prevent "continuing appropriations." In pertinent part, appropriations must lapse at the end of the fiscal year unless they are contractually committed; with the exception of motor fuel funds and other constitutionally excepted funds, appropriations may not "earmark" to any special purpose the proceeds of any particular tax or fund, and all "revenue collected from taxes, fees, and assessments for state purposes, as authorized by revenue measures enacted by the General Assembly, shall be paid into the general fund." Ga. Const. 1983, Art. VII, Sec. III, Para. II(a); Art. III, Sec. IX, Para. IV(c); and Art. III, Sec. IX, Para. VI(a)...

To continue reading