Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 23

GFC chainsaw crews began clearing roads immediately after the storm.

Downed timber near water complicates
cleanup strategies.

Management Team, led by Incident Command
System-certified GFC personnel, was assembled to coordinate with GEMA and oversee
recovery operations. GFC crews were utilized
for a myriad of diverse assignments, and GFC
aviation resources assessed damage from
1,000 feet.
"They were very helpful," said McCann.
"They moved water pallets, cots, M.R.E.s, you
name it. Unloading tractor-trailers, transporting supplies. Very beneficial."
Digging Out. Digging In.
Hurricane Michael destroyed some
$763 million worth of Georgia timber, roughly
10 percent of the state's annual output. Area
forest landowners took a massive blow, from
which many may never fully recover. GFC personnel were there in the trenches, assessing
damage, facilitating recovery and providing

Van Smith, David Cottles, Terry Heard and Rodney Heard responded to the storm from
GFC's Decatur office.
comfort. GFC's Forest Health and Sustainable
Community Forestry Program specialists hit
the ground in those early hours to gauge the
potential for insect and disease impacts on
rural and urban forests.
"It's heartbreaking," said Patricia
Middleton from the driver's seat of her Ranger,
cruising along the perimeter of her storm-torn
longleaf tract. "I love my land, and I love my
trees. There are a lot of decisions to be made."
The Early County forest landowner works
closely with GFC Forester Stephen Martin,
whom Middleton says has provided "tremendous support." She said she relies heavily on
his expertise as she follows the post-storm
mantra, "Assess. Salvage. Restore."
Middleton and Martin toured her 126-acre
tract, which is home to many treasured gopher
tortoises, discussing options. Rough plans
were mapped to clear-cut, burn, plant and

band spray, with patch planting in areas
where sunshine falls.
Fortunately, some financial aid has become
available to storm-hit forestland and orchard
owners. In a November special session, the
Georgia legislature allocated $200 million in
tax credits for losses reportable on 2018 federal income tax returns to landowners who
replant. Relief of $20 million in debris cleanup
and fire prevention practices was also authorized, and the GFC has been carrying out this
assistance through two separate programs.
In an effort to reduce the risk of wildfire and
insect infestations, the GFC has been administering these initiatives:
* Forest Debris Management Program
(FDMP)-Landowners who have 10 or
more acres of forestland or a commercial
orchard of any size are eligible for cleanup
work under an 80 percent cost-share plan,
SPRING 2019 www.accg.org

23


http://www.accg.org

Georgia County Government - Spring 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Georgia County Government - Spring 2019

President’s Message
Director's Desk
Ethics on the Edge
Avoid Property Tax Increases by Managing Revenues
EPD’s STAR Program Keeps Georgia Counties and Rights-of-Ways Clean
2019 ACCG Annual Conference Preview
College Underserved Community Partnership Program
Hurricane Michael: Looking Back, Looking Forward
Working with Hard-to-Count Communities
Reduce the Friction with a County-Wide Community Development System
News & Notes
Index of Advertisers
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - Intro
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - cover1
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - cover2
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 3
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 4
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 5
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 6
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - President’s Message
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 8
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - Director's Desk
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - Ethics on the Edge
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 11
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 12
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 13
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - Avoid Property Tax Increases by Managing Revenues
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 15
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - EPD’s STAR Program Keeps Georgia Counties and Rights-of-Ways Clean
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 17
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 2019 ACCG Annual Conference Preview
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 19
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - College Underserved Community Partnership Program
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 21
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - Hurricane Michael: Looking Back, Looking Forward
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 23
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 24
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - Working with Hard-to-Count Communities
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 26
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 27
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 28
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 29
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 30
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - Reduce the Friction with a County-Wide Community Development System
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - 32
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - News & Notes
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - Index of Advertisers
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - cover3
Georgia County Government - Spring 2019 - cover4
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