Growth Strategies: The Georgia Planning Act - An Assessment of the Program
Youngquist, James L.
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It has been called the best of all comprehensive statewide planning efforts in the United States because of its grassroots structure. It has been lauded by regionalists who value a growth strategies effort that recognizes the importance of a strong regional component to planning for the enhance future of their state. It has perhaps been studied and monitored by more scholars, planners, national associations interested in planning and development, and other state administrations than any other state planning effort Now in its fifth year of implementation, how successful has it been? Has it raised the consciousness level of the need to plan, brought about an understanding for the need of intergovernmental cooperation? Most importantly, has it done what Growth Strategies Commission set out to do when it worked for 18 months to devise programs to address quality growth in those areas of Georgia that are experiencing rapid growth as well as devise economic development strategies for those portions of the state in decline or stagnant? This paper will examine the most recognized piece of legislation of the Growth Strategies Commission's efforts to enhance the future of the state of Georgia. A brief overview will be given on the mission given to the Growth Strategies Commission in the summer of 1987 to develop a blueprint for Georgia's future; the logistics of the State Planning Act itself and its current benchmarks; and, most important, what is really happening in its quest to accomplish what its supporters had hoped for in the molding of the program.