Current land use policies in the US Essay
Current land use policies in the US, 489 words essay example
Current land use policies also have been unable to prevent the overlap of multiple Federal, State, and local jurisdictions over land use. As a result, various levels of government are making land use decisions independently of each other. Often these decisions are made without any common understanding of what long-range growth management goals should be. In the second half of the twentieth century the American public became increasingly concerned about environmental degradation. In response, federal policymakers began focusing on the enactment and implementation of such statutes as the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, and the Endangered Species Act. These and other landmark pieces of environmental legislation passed during the 1960s and 1970s were designed to curb pollution and other abuses. State legislatures passed similar laws to allow them to implement federal programs to address their own environmental concerns. Federal and state legislative bodies thus emerged as major forums for developing environmental policy.
Environmental law emerged as a centerpiece for environmental policy in Georgia in the mid-1960s. In response to significant water pollution problems, the Georgia General Assembly passed the state's first major environmental legislation, the Water Quality Control Act of 1964. This was followed in 1968 by the passage of the Georgia Surface Mining Act, which requires the reclamation of lands after mining. In the 1970s Georgia took major legislative steps to protect its environment. In 1970 the General Assembly enacted the Coastal Marshlands Protection Act, establishing a permit system for actions that would convert coastal marshes to dry land uses. In 1972 a new agency, the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), was created. At the same time environmental permitting authority was concentrated in the Environmental Protection Division (EPD) of the DNR. Passage of the Solid Waste Management Act and the Ground Water Use Act was also accomplished in the state in 1972. Other environmental legislation of the 1970s included laws addressing the allocation of surface water, control of soil sedimentation and erosion, and protection of air quality.
In Georgia as in other states, the 1980s and 1990s saw a heightened focus on policymaking activities at the state capitol. This focus was reflected in the increase of lobbyists registered in Georgia during this period, from 300 in 1973 to around 1,000 by 2001. A rising concern about environmental matters could also be seen in the increase in the number of environmental organizations in Georgia, from fewer than 5 in the early 1970s to more than 100 in 2001.
The use of Privately owned land
The rights of ownership are not absolute rights because there are public constraints on the owner's ability to use the property. The limits and controls fall into five groups the police powers of the state, eminent domain, taxation/assessment powers, escheat, and forfeiture for crime. Governments use these controls and limits to provide social benefits to the citizens of the community. However, each property owner loses a degree of his or her individual rights in the process.