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DCA March/April Newsletter April is Fair Housing Month Housing discrimination has many

faces:But, no matter what form it takes, housing discrimination is illegal! At DCA, our commitment to Fair Housing is ongoing and enduring. Fair Housing is an integral part of building strong, vibrant communities. We want everyone to understand what Fair Housing means, and we need you to help get the message out. . . . . . read more here

Last chance to sign up for DCA's spring Community Planning Institute! Is your city or county about to update your local comprehensive

••• ••••• ••••• ••••

plan? Do you need help implementing your plan? DCA has just the workshop to get your community on the road to successful planning for a bright future! The Office of Planning and Environmental Management is hosting its spring Community Planning Institute at Unicoi State Park & Lodge April 20-21 . To register, please visit DCA's Community Planning Institute website. . . . . . read more here

Rusty Haygood named new DCA Deputy Commissioner

In March, Commissioner Camila Knowles named Rusty Haygood as the new Deputy Commissioner of Community Development & Finance for Georgia's Department of Community Affairs. The announcement followed the departure of Christopher Nunn, who was appointed by Gov. Nathan Deal as Commissioner of the Department of Administrative Services. The transition took place on April l . . . . . . read more here

RURAL bill to be signed into law In March, the State Legislature passed the

R.U.R.A.L. bill - Revitalizing Underdeveloped Rural Areas Legislation. This legislation creates incentives to help our smallest, most rural downtown areas impacted by adverse economic conditions and adds to our resources on the rural economic development front. ..... read more here

DCA names pilot community for first Community Assistance Team

A new resource the department is launching this year to help Georgia communities is DCA Community Assistance Teams. Last year, Commissioner Knowles announced the formation of these teams and encouraged communities to apply to serve as pilot projects. The selection process was kept open through January, and Monticello-Jasper County has been selected as our pilot for the new CAT program. . . . . . read more here

Eight cities join Georgia's Exceptional Main Streets program

Eight additional cities have been selected to join Georgia's Exceptional Main Streets (GEMS) program. These communities join eight existing programs as proven leaders in downtown development. Together, each of these 16 cities has been carefully chosen due to the overwhelmingly positive impact that the Main Street Program has had on its local historic district. ..... read more here

Camila Knowles Commissioner

DCA

Carmen Chubb Deputy Commissioner,

Housing

John Ellis Deputy Commissioner

Finance & Operations

Rusty Haygood Deputy Commissioner Community Development & Finance

Seth Coker Director of Government and External Relations MaryBrown Sandys Director of Marketing & Communications Georgia Department of Community Affairs (404) 679-4840 www.dca.ga.gov Communications@dca.ga.gov


DCA: BUILDING COMMUNITIES March/April 2017

April is Fair Housing Month! Housing discrimination has many faces: “I’m sorry but we’ll have to charge a pet deposit for your guide dog.” “We have a separate waiting list for people in wheelchairs.” “Families with children can only live in the back of the complex.” “I don’t think you’ll like that neighborhood.” But, no matter what form it takes, housing discrimination is illegal! At DCA, our commitment to Fair Housing is ongoing and enduring. Fair Housing is an integral part of building strong, vibrant communities. We want everyone to understand what Fair Housing means, and we need you to help get the message out. And we know how busy you are, so when we ask for help, we want to make it easy! You can find our Fair Housing Communications Toolkit on the DCA website. Working together, we can ensure that every Georgian – regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, familial status, or disability – has access to neighborhoods of opportunity. Please email MaryBrown Sandys at marybrown.sandys@dca.ga.gov if you have any questions, and don’t forget to let us know how you help get the word out!

Last chance to sign up for DCA’s spring Community Planning Institute! Is your city or county about to update your local comprehensive plan? Do you need help implementing your plan? DCA has just the workshop to get your community on the road to successful planning for a bright future! The Office of Planning and Environmental Management is hosting its spring Community Planning Institute at Unicoi State Park & Lodge April 20-21. To register, please visit DCA’s Community Planning Institute website. Governments with plan due dates in late 2017 and 2018 are encouraged to attend this course. Each day there will be peer-to-peer lessons from successful PlanFirst communities. Thursday, April 20, 2017: Understand the basics of local planning and the development of a local comprehensive plan, including a detailed review of Georgia’s Rules for Local Comprehensive Planning. Friday, April 21, 2017: Delve into plan development and implementation, with a final session that focuses on the legal basis of zoning and practical guidance for making good local development and land management decisions.


DCA: BUILDING COMMUNITIES March/April 2017

Rusty Haygood named new DCA Deputy Commissioner In March, Commissioner Camila Knowles named Rusty Haygood as the new Deputy Commissioner of Community Development & Finance for Georgia’s Department of Community Affairs. The announcement followed the departure of Christopher Nunn, who was appointed by Gov. Nathan Deal as Commissioner of the Department of Administrative Services. The transition took place on April 1. “Christopher made great strides in a number of key program areas, and I’m pleased to have someone with Rusty’s deep program knowledge and understanding of community development who will continue that leadership,” said Knowles. Previously, Rusty was the Division Director for Community Development at DCA, a position he had held since April 2015. Prior to this position, he served as the Director of Field Services for DCA’s Economic Development and Finance Division. Before coming to DCA, Rusty was the Economic Development Director for Oconee County, a position he held for 7½ years. While there, he was part of a team that secured an agreement with Caterpillar to locate in the community. Before working in Oconee County, Haygood served in several roles with the Middle Georgia Regional Development Center in Macon, with his final role being Director of Public Administration. Rusty has worked on projects of all sizes, ranging from the successful recruitment of Fortune 100 companies to assisting small business start-ups. He has prepared successful grant applications for communities that have resulted in more than $37 million in awards. In addition to economic development recruitment and financing activities, he has prepared numerous plans and studies for Georgia communities large and small, and worked with city and county officials to renegotiate their Service Delivery Strategy agreements. Originally from Toccoa, Georgia, Haygood is a graduate of The University of Georgia, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and a Master’s degree in Public Administration. Early in his career, he completed internships with then-Congressman Nathan Deal and the City of Riverdale. Rusty and his wife, Jennifer, an administrator at Malcolm Bridge Elementary School in Oconee County, reside in Athens. They were members of the Leadership Georgia Class of 2014 and have one daughter, Emma, who is being groomed to become her father’s golfing partner.


DCA: BUILDING COMMUNITIES March/April 2017

RURAL bill to be signed into law In March, the State Legislature passed the R.U.R.A.L. bill – Revitalizing Underdeveloped Rural Areas Legislation. This legislation creates incentives to help our smallest, most rural downtown areas impacted by adverse economic conditions and adds to our resources on the rural economic development front. The goal is to enhance economic development efforts in our state’s most rural areas through tax credits – a job tax credit, an investment credit, and a rehabilitation credit. And if you have not yet received your copy of The Georgia Rural Economic Development Handbook, please reach out to your local DCA regional representative. Local economic developers across the state should receive a copy of this handbook, free of charge and hand delivered by a member of the DCA Community Services team, this spring.

DCA names pilot community for first Community Assistance Team A new resource the department is launching this year to help Georgia communities is DCA Community Assistance Teams. Last year, Commissioner Knowles announced the formation of

these teams and encouraged communities to apply to serve as pilot projects. DCA asked interested communities to summarize their technical assistance “wish list” and fill out an assessment survey to be considered for this opportunity. The selection process was kept open through January, and Monticello-Jasper County has been selected as our pilot for the new CAT program.


DCA: BUILDING COMMUNITIES March/April 2017

Eight cities join Georgia’s Exceptional Main Streets program

(Clockwise from top left: The downtowns of Columbus, Madison and Newnan, Georgia)

Eight additional cities have been selected to join Georgia’s Exceptional Main Streets (GEMS) program. These communities join eight existing programs as proven leaders in downtown development. Together, each of these 16 cities has been carefully chosen due to the overwhelmingly positive impact that the Main Street Program has had on its local historic district. From new businesses and job creation, to rehabilitation projects and downtown housing, these communities have set themselves apart with their annual economic impact numbers and focus on historic preservation. Collectively, these cities represent 473,200 Georgia citizens and eight service delivery regions. The selected cities are: Bainbridge Newnan Brunswick Rome

Columbus Statesboro Dahlonega Thomasville

Greensboro Tifton Madison Toccoa

Milledgeville Tybee Island Moultrie Valdosta


DCA: BUILDING COMMUNITIES March/April 2017 These communities are united by common attributes that help make them the strongest commercial historic districts in the state – a strong commitment to historic preservation and planning, stable leadership and active municipal support. The Main Street Approach® is a proven methodology that empowers communities to utilize their distinctive assets, such as their independent businesses and historic character, to revive their commercial districts, strengthen local economies and increase civic engagement. Since 1980, the Main Street Four-Point Approach® to downtown revitalization has been used by more than 100+ communities statewide to create more than 70,000 net new jobs and stimulate a $4.5 billion in private/public investment. For more information on how your city can become a Georgia Main Street community, please Visit www.georgiamainstreet.org or contact Jessica Reynolds, Director of the Office of Downtown Development at the Georgia Department of Community Affairs (DCA), which houses the Georgia Main Street program: jessica.reynolds@dca.ga.gov.

Underwater Georgia: Update DCA has contacted over half of the Underwater Georgia preapplicants and received more than 600 completed applications. To date, DCA has delivered nearly $6 million in assistance to more than 200 homeowners to help bring them back to equity – an average of $29,000 per homeowner. Our housing specialists are working through this process as quickly as possible. Applicants that have not yet been contacted should check www.underwatergeorgia.org for updates and keep their mortgage payments current.

DCA Building Communities March/April 2017  

Building Communities is the semi-monthly newsletter published by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.

DCA Building Communities March/April 2017  

Building Communities is the semi-monthly newsletter published by the Georgia Department of Community Affairs.