12/18

Robert Ramsay Column: Expand, don’t limit, conservation opportunities

By Robert Ramsay
Savannah Morning News
December 18, 2018

On Election Day 2018, Georgians overwhelmingly approved Amendment 1, also known as the Georgia Outdoor Stewardship Amendment (GOSA), which is expected to generate more than $20 million annually in dedicated conservation funding. It will do so not by raising or creating any new taxes or fees, but instead by rededicating a portion of the state’s existing sales and use tax on outdoor sporting goods to conservation. As president of the Georgia Conservancy, I am proud that Georgians crossed the partisan divide and took advantage of this historic opportunity to protect our state’s precious land and water resources.

After GOSA’s passing, Outside Magazine wrote that its “success could prove to be a model for similar ballot measures elsewhere in 2020.” I hope that that proves true. But I also strongly believe that conservation should not just be a state-driven priority. The federal government must continue to play a vital role by prioritizing and encouraging conservation among private citizens.

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