County  Line
May 2016, Vol. 10, No. 5 Subscribe | Past issues | Advertise | eMagazine Archives

Counties Tour Georgia's Water Conservation Efforts

Print Print this article

ACCG hosted a Water Tour for County Commissioners and County staff March 30-31, 2016. This was the first ACCG Water Tour in over 10 years.

Over 40 county commissioners and staff attended along with members of ACCG staff, representatives from UGA's Extension program and the Georgia Farm Bureau, guest speakers and lecturers from businesses and organizations across Georgia, and even a state legislator.

Participants traveled together to the Go Fish Georgia Center in Houston County and learned about the importance of the fishing industry in the state from Scott Robinson with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. Fishing alone has a more than $1 billion economic impact in Georgia.

After departing and heading to Colquitt County, guests gave presentations on the bus to pass the time in an educational way. Participants heard from ACCG Executive Director Ross King, discussing financing available from the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority, and Associate Legislative Director Todd Edwards, who covered relevant topics in the legislature this session.

Shana Jones, Program Manager of the Planning and Environmental Services Unit at the Carl Vinson Institute of Government, discussed the Clean Water Act and Watershed Planning. Dr. Gary L. Hawkins also spoke to the crowd as the Water Resource Management and Policy Specialist with the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at the University of Georgia.

Participants enjoyed dinner in Colquitt County and attended the Sunbelt Ag Expo the next morning. In the farming fields, they listened to seminars and presentations on farmers’ efforts to conserve water. The long list of speakers discussed water policies, irrigation systems, the effectiveness of soil moisture meters, and the importance of public-private partnerships to control weeds and pests in crops.

The presentations were followed by a luncheon, and the commissioners received a container of farm-fresh strawberries courtesy of the Georgia Agribusiness Council. Overall, these elected officials were exposed to a world many of them have never had personal experience with, and they can use that knowledge in their decision-making process going forward. Water conservation is important in Georgia, from the fishing industry to the state’s agriculture-based economy, and firsthand experience is the best method of education for these commissioners and chairpersons.


Mauldin & Jenkins
Naylor Association Solutions
ACCG, Georgia's County Association
191 Peachtree Street NE, Suite 700
Atlanta, GA 30303
phone: 404-522-5022 | fax: 404-525-2477 |