Gov. Brian Kemp's proposed budget would transfer nearly $200,000 from the secretary of state's office to the attorney general's budget for "legal services to support election litigation and cyber security" in fiscal 2020 and 2021.
The shuffling of money comes as Kemp has asked state agencies to cut spending by 4% in fiscal 2020 and 6% in fiscal 2021, which begins July 1.
Some of money transferred to the attorney general’s office would pay to add a lawyer to the team of attorneys that represents the state in election challenges.
“We are currently maximizing our internal capacity with elections lawsuits against the state, and there are more lawsuits coming our way this year and in the future,” Carr told lawmakers.
There currently are two attorneys that work “almost exclusively” on election lawsuits, an agency spokeswoman said. Other lawyers in the agency at times assist the attorney general’s office on those types of cases, she said. The government also funds outside attorneys to represent the state.
In the 2018 election cycle, there were 31 cases filed against the state. The 2019-2020 election cycle has spurred three lawsuits — all of which are still ongoing.
In all, Georgia is at the center of nine ongoing elections-related cases.
Carr said he only expects that number to climb in the coming year.
“As we head into an election season again this year, followed by redistricting and subsequent elections in the future, the department needs additional support in order to continue to handle this increased workload,” Carr said.
Staff reporter Mark Niesse contributed to this article.