Cobb must act swiftly to preserve its green space
May 11, 2017
We applaud the Board of Commissioners for issuing $27.6 million of Park Bond 2008. We look forward to the additional $12.4 million during Chairman Mike Boyce’s term in office.
Undeveloped land for green space is disappearing at an alarming rate. There are many ways to preserve land in addition to an outright purchase. Land trusts can provide temporary funding to hold the land until the county purchases it, conservation easements prevent land from being developed in perpetuity and the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority provides extremely low-cost loans, saving the County millions of dollars in interest.
Milton and Johns Creek approved referenda totaling $65 million for land conservation and green space in November 2016. These measures were supported by The Georgia Conservancy, The Trust for Public Land, Land Trust Alliance and The Nature Conservancy in Georgia.
February 2017, Brookhaven was awarded a $5.7 million loan by GEFA to finance purchasing 33 acres of forested land adjacent to the DeKalb-Peachtree Airport. This acquisition preserves one of the largest remaining tracts of urban forest in metro Atlanta, and protects the Peachtree Creek watershed.
The city will pay 0.89 percent interest on the 20-year loan. Yes — less than 1 percent interest, saving Brookhaven millions of dollars that can be used to purchase more green space.
What is Cobb County doing to take advantage of creative financing to purchase and preserve green space?