GEORGIA
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The Georgia Legislature

Land Use Planning

Land Use Planning Around Military Installations
The Official Code of Georgia Annotated §36-66-6 requires any local government which has established a planning department or other similar agency charged with the duty of reviewing zoning proposals to investigate and make a recommendation with respect to each proposed zoning decision involving land that is adjacent to or within 3,000 feet of any military base or military installation or within the 3,000 foot Clear Zone and Accident Prevention Zones Numbers I and II as prescribed in the definition of an Air Installation Compatible Use Zone of a military airport.  Specifically, planning entities are to determine given the proposed land use's proximity of the military facility:

•  Whether the zoning proposal will permit a use that is suitable in view of the use of adjacent or nearby property within 3,000 feet of a military base, military installation, or military airport;
•  Whether the zoning proposal will adversely affect the existing use or usability of nearby property within 3,000 feet of a military base, military installation, or military airport;
•  Whether the property to be affected by the zoning proposal has a reasonable economic use as currently zoned;
•  Whether the zoning proposal will result in a use which will or could cause a safety concern with respect to excessive or burdensome use of existing streets, transportation facilities, utilities, or schools due to the use of nearby property as a military base, military installation, or military airport;
•  If the local government has an adopted land use plan, whether the zoning proposal is in conformity with the policy and intent of the land use plan; and
•  Whether there are other existing or changing conditions affecting the use of the nearby property as a military base, military installation, or military airport which give supporting grounds for either approval or disapproval of the zoning proposal.

O.C.G.A. §36-66-6


Open Space/Conservation

Conservation Easement Statutes
The Official Code of Georgia Annotated §44-10-1 et seq. provides for the state’s Uniform Conservation Easement Act, which authorizes the creation of permanent easements on real property for conservation and historic preservation purposes.

The Official Code of Georgia Annotated §36-9-3 allows county governments to establish conservation easements if the easement would be of benefit to the county and to its citizens by way of retaining or protecting natural, scenic, or open-space values of real property; assuring the availability of the property for agricultural, forest, recreational, or open-space use; protecting natural resources; maintaining or enhancing air or water quality; or preserving the historical, architectural, archeological, or cultural aspects of the property. County governments may sell, or grant to any holder, a conservation easement over any of its real property, including but not limited to any of its real property set aside for use as a park. The Official Code of Georgia Annotated §36-37-6.1 allows municipalities to lease out and grant easements over property used primarily for recreational purposes to others consistent with general park and recreational purposes.

Official Code of Georgia Annotated §36-9-3, 36-37-6.1, and §44-10-1 et seq.

Land Conservation Program
The Georgia Land Conservation program provides grants for fee title or conservation easement purchases from the Georgia Land Conservation Trust Fund; low-interest loans for fee title or conservation easement purchases from the Georgia Land Conservation Revolving Fund; tax incentives for donations of conservation lands or conservation easements; and consultation, referrals, and other technical support for those seeking to carry out land conservation initiatives.

Resource Link

Land Conservation Tax Credit
The Official Code of Georgia Annotated §48-7-29.12 provides for the Land Conservation Tax Credit.  Tax payers are eligible for the credit for each qualified donation of real property for conservation purposes.  The law provides for a credit of up to 25% of the fair market value of the donated real property.  The credit may not exceed $250,000 for individuals, $500,000 for corporations, and $1,000,000 for partnerships.

Contact:
Chris Canalos
Georgia Department of Natural Resources
Wildlife Resources Division
Nongame Conservation Section
2065 US Highway 278 SE
Social Circle, Georgia 30025-4743
(770) 918-6411
(706) 557-3508 fax
chris.canalos@dnr.state.ga.us

Official Code of Georgia Annotated §48-7-29.12
Conservation Tax Credit

Forest Legacy Program
The Georgia Forestry Commission administers the state’s Forest Legacy program.  The program allows for the donation and/or purchase of conservation easements or fee simple land from willing participants who wish to keep the land in forestry use.  The state holds title to the Forest Legacy conservation easements and provides technical advice to landowners, who are eligible for certain federal and state income tax credits.

Contact:
Mr. Buford Sanders
Georgia Forestry Commission
1055 East Whitehall Road
Athens, Georgia  30605
(706) 542-9939
bsanders@gfc.state.ga.us

Forest Legacy and Conservation Easements


Administrative

Georgia Military Affairs Coordinating Committee
In 1994, the Georgia Military Affairs Coordinating Committee was established to help bases in Georgia deal with Base Realignment and Closure.  The Governor’s office estimated in 2002 that the state’s military bases “impact over half a million jobs and have an overall economic impact of about $25 billion.”  Community action groups were formed to interface between the Committee and the 13 military bases/installations.  The Committee’s goals are to:

  • Utilize all available resources to protect these important facilities during Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) and enhance their military operations;
  • Provide effective solutions to create and foster long-term economic development strategies in the cities and regions supporting military bases; and
  • Engage state and federal officials, industry leaders and key stakeholders and provide essential tools to understand the public and private sector needs of Georgia’s military communities; and
  • Expand the development of Georgia’s defense industries.

Georgia Military Affairs Coordinating Committee
Press Release Regarding Georgia Military Affairs Coordinating Committee

Georgia’s Defense Initiative
The Defense Initiative collaborates with military installations and surrounding communities to develop strategies to grow the state’s economy. The Defense Initiative concentrates on economic development and workforce training.

Contact:
T. Rogers Wade, Executive Director
Georgia’s Defense Initiative
(404) 962-4178 
rwade@georgia.gov

Press Release Regarding Defense Initiative


State Contact Information

Military Liaison POC
Mr. Michael Fowler
Office of the Adjutant General
Georgia Department of Defense
P.O. Box 1970
Marietta, Georgia  30061-1970 
(678) 569-6012
(678) 569-6005 fax

Adjutant General
Major General Jim Butterworth, Adjutant General
Georgia Department of Defense
P.O. Box 1970
Marrietta, Georgia 30061-1970
(678) 569-6001
(678) 569-6005 fax
james.butterworth@us.army.mil

Legislative Process Regarding Military POCs
Jurisdiction over military issues is primarily held by the Senate Committee on Veterans and Military Affairs and by the House Committee on Defense and Veterans Affairs.  The Senate Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security and the House Committee on Public Safety maintain jurisdiction over homeland defense matters.  As in other states, legislative committees and members refer to the Department of Veterans Services and the office of the Adjutant General for representation of the military.  There is also a Military Affairs Coordinating Committee in the office of the Governor which serves in an advisory role to the Governor on military issues. 

Committees of Primary Jurisdiction/Legislative Contact
Senate Committee on Veterans, Military Affairs, and Homeland Security
Senator Ed Harbison, Chairman
Ms. Cyndi Williams, Legislative Assistant
432 State Capitol
Atlanta, Georgia 30334
(404) 656-0074
(404) 463-5547 fax
cyndi.williams@senate.ga.gov

House Committee on Defense and Veterans Affairs
Representative John P. Yates, Chair
Jeremy Betts, Policy Analyst
217 State Capitol
Atlanta, Georgia 30334
(404) 656-5126
(404) 657-6700 fax
jeremy.betts@house.ga.gov

Senate Committee on Public Safety
Senator Buddy Carter, Chairman
Abigail Thompson, Legislative Assistant
421-B State Capitol
Atlanta, Georgia 30334
(404) 656-5109 
(404) 463-4161 fax
abigail.thompson@senate.ga.gov

House Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security
Representative Alan Powell, Chair
Abby Day, Policy Analyst
613 Coverdell Legislative Office Building
Atlanta, Georgia 30334 
404-463-3793
404-651-9730 fax
abby.day@house.ga.gov