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Georgia college students will get a 3 percent boost in HOPE scholarship money this fall, Gov. Nathan Deal told WSB TV yesterday. “We do have money in the lottery,” Deal said. “We are hopeful it can continue to grow. Maybe we can make even better announcements in years to come.”

But as Bryan Long of the progressive group Better Georgia pointed out, tuition at UGA is going up 5 percent, so HOPE recipients will still be paying more. “Gov. Deal broke the HOPE Scholarship,” Long said. “His current budget does nothing to fix it.”

In other news, U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson talked about raising the debt ceiling and banning assault weapons (he’s against both) during a speech to the Athens Area Chamber of Commerce yesterday, according to Athens Patch.

And a trial is underway to decide whether 22 coveted parking spaces in Five Points are publicly or privately owned, the Athens Banner-Herald reports.