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Regionally important resources sought
Deadline for nominations is Sept. 18
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Forsyth County News
Nominations must be submitted by Sept. 18 and must be regionally significant with broad community support and a need for preservation or enhancement. To submit a resource, including land, water or buildings, e-mail Include “Forsyth RIR” in the subject line. Resources can also be copied to the Atlanta Regional Commission via
Regional commissions across Georgia are looking for the state’s most significant resources.

As part of a plan for the future, the Georgia Mountains Regional Commission is asking residents of Forsyth and a dozen other counties to nominate places worthy of protection as “regionally important resources.”

They can be land, water, buildings and landmarks that are environmentally or historically significant.

“Scenic vistas and areas that have a recreational appeal are going to be considered, but it’s not just that we accept everything carte blanche,” said Adam Hazell, commission planning director.

“It’s an effort to find the areas of priority to the local environment and to the local social fabric and see if there’s a way we can actively and legally preserve them.”

After a final list is created, the goal is to manage and protect the sites. This includes buying land, making improvements and protecting places from development.

All residents are encouraged to make nominations. But local governments, conservation organizations and the state also will take a role in determining “how much of this is serious and how much of this can we really do something about,” he said.

The mountains region commission will compile resources from Forsyth and nearby Dawson, Hall and Lumpkin counties, among others.

A draft map likely will be complete by year’s end. In early 2010, the list will be refined and the commission will work with local governments to see what can be done to protect the resources.

The project is funded through the state Department of Community Affairs. But by reaching out to individual regions, Hazell said the state will have more of a focused list from the people who live near the resources.

“What we constitute as regionally important resources and how we value them here in the Georgia Mountains region might be completely different than South Georgia,” he said. “... This has flexibility in purpose, so we can make it work out for everybody.”

E-mail Jennifer Sami at