Zoning is the legislative process for dividing land into zones for different uses. Oddly enough, individual cities within our county like Trion & Summerville already have zoning laws in place. While Chattooga County itself is currently one of only two counties in northwest Georgia that does not have zoning laws. Which means that anyone can build whatever structures that they would like (except for chicken houses), without repercussion. On the surface, this sounds like a great idea. For what person would actually want the government to have a say in what they can do on their own property? The reality though is that zoning laws have been proven to protect the health, safety, and general welfare of the public as it relates to land use. Think of zoning laws as government-imposed, “love thy neighbor as yourself.” Here are just a few examples of the benefits of zoning:
• Protecting the value and enjoyment of properties by separating incompatible land uses and minimizing their potentially negative impacts upon each other
• Protecting the value and enjoyment of properties by allowing a property its most appropriate land use given its location and surrounding uses
• Ensuring that adequate public infrastructure is available for the type of property being requested, e.g., roads, water, and sewers
By introducing zoning laws to Chattooga County, we the citizens can prevent businesses such as factories, sewage treatment plants, big-box stores, warehouses, and rehabilitation facilities from opening their doors in places like residential neighborhoods or agricultural areas. As it stands, there is NO LEGAL BARRIER for any of these types of places to start construction tomorrow in your backyard. Additionally, by introducing the concept of building inspections to the county, residents will be protected from “fly-by-night” contractors who, while cheap, typically perform shoddy work, without insurance.
We the concerned citizens of Chattooga County hope that you will SIGN THIS PETITION so that we can allow Chattooga County to grow and flourish like surrounding counties in the appropriate areas, while still KEEPING OUR BEAUTIFUL RESIDENTIAL AND AGRICULTURAL AREAS INTACT.