Local Planning

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Georgia's city and county governments are working every day to make their communities strong, vibrant places where people want to live, work and play.  DCA's Office of Planning works to equip local governments with the information and tools they need to make well-informed decisions and implement rational processes and programs to move them toward their citizens' visions.

The Local Planning Programs encompass all of the initiatives and activities aimed at building the capacity of Georgia's communities--helping them to do the things that they do as well as they can.  That work is guided by a variety of laws (e.g., the Georgia Planning Act and the Development Impact Fee Act) and regulations (e.g., the Minimum Standards for Local Comprehensive Planning and the Development Impact Fee Compliance Requirements).  There are also a number of incentive-based recognition programs and designations to recognize communities that excel in this arena (e.g., PlanFirst and WaterFirst).  In this section of the website you will find a large selection of resources to assist local governments in undertaking worthwhile planning processes, building high-quality plans, and successfully implementing them.

Periodic Due-Dates

Periodic updates of your local planning documents (e.g. comprehensive plan, service delivery strategy, capital improvements element, etc.) required in order to retain eligibility for various FUNDING, PERMITTING, AND INCENTIVE programs administered by the State. Please take a moment to review your community’s, below, to ensure that your eligibility for state assistance is not interrupted.  We urge local governments to check their due dates regularly, below.

Qualified Local Government (QLG) Status

To encourage local governments' engagement in comprehensive planning, Georgia incentivizes it by allowing cities and counties with DCA-approved comprehensive plans access to a special package of financial resources to aid in implementing their plans.  This includes Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), water and sewer loans from the Georgia Environmental Finance Authority (GEFA), economic development funding from the OneGeorgia Authority, and a variety of other programs from DCA and partner agencies (a detailed list is available in the "Fact Sheets" section, below).  Eligibility for this package of incentives is called Qualified Local Government (QLG) status.