GA - GAC
Rules and Regulations of the State of Georgia
Terms and Conditions of Agreement for Access to Rules and Regulations of the State of Georgia Website

(Note: certain features of this site have been disabled for the general public to prevent digital piracy. If you are an entitled government entity pursuant the Georgia Administrative Procedures Act, O.C.G.A.§ 50-13-7(d) contact the State of Georgia's Administrative Procedures Division at 678-364-3785 to enable these features for your location.)

To access this website, you must agree to the following:

These terms of use are a contract between you and/or your employer (if any), and Lawriter, LLC.

You agree not to use any web crawler, scraper, or other robot or automated program or device to obtain data from the website.

You agree that you will not sell or license anything that you download, print, or copy from this website.

THIS WEBSITE AND ITS CONTENT ARE PROVIDED "AS IS." THE STATE OF GEORGIA AND LAWRITER EXPRESSLY DISCLAIM ALL WARRANTIES, INCLUDING THE WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY, FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE, AND NON-INFRINGEMENT AND ARE NOT LIABLE TO ANY PERSON FOR ANY ERRORS IN INACCURACIES CONTAINED IN THIS WEBSITE.

By accessing and/or using this website, you agree to the terms and conditions above. If you do not agree to the terms and conditions above, you must cease accessing and/or using this website and destroy all material obtained from this website without your agreement.

If you accept these terms enter the information below and click “I AGREE”.

Subject 560-11-11 FOREST LAND PROTECTION

Rule 560-11-11-.01 Definitions

(1) As used in this Regulatory Chapter, the term:
(a) "Application" shall mean the application for QFLP designation, which includes a three part form consisting of: Section A - Application; Section B - Questionnaire; and Section C -Covenant. All three parts of the application shall be completed by the applicant seeking the QFLP designation.
(b) "Contiguous" shall mean real property within a county that abuts, joins, or touches and has the same undivided common ownership.
1. If an applicant's tract is divided by a county boundary, public roadway, public easements, public right-of-way, natural boundary, land lot line or railroad tracks then the applicant has, at the time of the initial application, a one-time election to declare the tract as contiguous irrespective of a county boundary, public roadway, public easement, public right-of-way, natural boundary, land lot line or railroad track.
(c) "Department" shall mean the Georgia Department of Revenue.
(d) "Entity registered to do business in this state" shall mean any firm, partnership, cooperative, nonprofit membership corporation, joint venture, association, company, corporation, agency, syndicate, estate, trust, business trust, receiver, fiduciary, or other group or combination acting as a unit, body politic, or political subdivision, whether public, private, or quasi-public that is registered to do business with the Secretary of the State of Georgia or that has been created by a court.
(e) "FLPA" shall mean the Georgia Forest Land Protection Act of 2008 as codified in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7.
(f) "Forest Land" shall mean the timbered area of a tract of land as determined by the Local Board of Tax Assessors.
(g) "Good Faith Subsistence" shall mean the use of the forest land in a manner that minimizes change or damage to the natural state of the forest land.
(h) "Local Board of Tax Assessors" shall mean the local board of tax assessors in any county where the application for QFLP designation is filed and the real property is located.
(i) "Notice of Breach" shall mean the notice sent by the Local Board of Tax Assessors in the county where the breach has occurred.
(j) "Permissible Breach" shall mean a breach enumerated in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7(p), which will serve to terminate the QFLP Covenant. However, the breaching party is not subject to penalties and interest.
(k) "Plat" shall mean a legible drawing done on, at a minimum, 8 ½ x 11 20lb paper sufficiently delineating the boundaries of the tract of real property for which QFLP designation is sought.
1. All Plats shall be drawn with the top of the page being north.
(l) "Primary Use" shall mean a use of the tract which is
1. According to O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7(b)(2)(C).
2. As set forth on the Department's application form and is approved by the Local Board of Tax Assessors.
(m) "QFLP" stands for Qualified Forest Land Property of greater than 200 acres
1. That meets the qualifications set forth in FLPA.
2. That has been approved by the Local Board of Tax Assessors.
3. For which a QFLP Covenant has been
(i) Signed on behalf, or by all parties owning an undivided interest in the fee simple tract; and
(ii) Recorded in any appropriate county's real property index.
(n) "QFLP Covenant" shall mean the fifteen (15) year covenant required by O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7. The form of the covenant shall be in the manner prescribed by the Commissioner.
(o) "Secondary Use" shall mean secondary uses of the tract as specified in the FLPA as determined by the Local Board of Tax Assessors.
(p) "Underlying Property" means the minimum lot size required for residential construction by local zoning ordinances or two acres, whichever is less, for which the taxpayer has provided documents which delineate the property boundaries so as to facilitate the proper identification of such property on the covenant applicant and the board of tax assessors maps and records.

Rule 560-11-11-.02 Withdrawing or Amending an Application for QFLP

(1) An application for QFLP may be amended or withdrawn at any time prior to the initial approval or denial of such QFLP application by the local county board of tax assessors by giving notification of such amendment or withdrawal.
(2) The notification for amending or withdrawing the application shall be considered received by the local board of assessors when hand delivered or when date stamped by the United States Postal Service.

Rule 560-11-11-.03 QFLP Qualifications

(1) The Local Board of Tax Assessors shall be responsible for approving all QFLP applications.
(2) Real property for which QFLP designation is sought shall meet all requirements as set forth in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7 and
(a) At least one-half of area of the applicant's tract of real property for which QFLP designation is sought must be used for a Qualifying Purpose as set forth in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7, and Department regulations;
(b) The portion of the tract not being used for a Qualifying Purpose must not be used for any other type of business other than as set forth in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7; and
(c) Uses of any portion of the tract not being used for a Qualifying Purpose may be deemed acceptable uses by the Local Board of Tax Assessors, and therefore not in breach of the QFLP Covenant, provided that
1. The Local Board of Tax Assessors determines that such portion is
(i) Minimally managed so that it does not contribute significantly to erosion or other environmental or conservation problems; or
(ii) Being used for any secondary uses as listed in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7(b)(2)(C).
(3) Area around cellular phone tower pads used or maintained as part of the pad, shall not constitute a breach of the QFLP Covenant if
(a) The tract is less than 2,000 acres the total area of the pads does not exceed six (6) acres, or
(b) For tracts larger than 2,000 acres, the total area of cellular phone tower pads does not exceed six (6) acres for every 2,000 acres.
(c) Any roadway to the cellular phone tower pads shall not be included in the determination of the six (6) acre maximum.
(4) To obtain QFLP designation for a contiguous tract of real property located in multiple counties, the applicant must enter into a single QFLP Covenant for the entire contiguous tract. This QFLP Covenant must be approved and recorded in each county where the contiguous tracts are located.
(a) If one or more counties deny a QFLP application, any portions of the contiguous tract which are approved, may still be eligible for QFLP designation provided that
1. Any remaining tract or tracts meets the minimum qualifications as set forth in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7, and Department regulations.
2. The QFLP Covenant is signed by all owners and the appropriate Local Board(s) of Tax Assessors; and
3. Recorded in the appropriate county's real property index.
(5) The QFLP Covenant shall be effective upon the county signing and recording the QFLP Covenant in the real property index.
(a) Any appeals to the denial of QFLP designation or failure by the Local Board of Tax Assessors to sign the Covenant, shall be made in the manner provided for in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-311.
1. If an appeal is not resolved until the subsequent year after the filing of the application and the applicant receives a favorable decision on the appeal the applicant shall be entitled to the benefits derived from the QFLP Covenant beginning in the year for which the application was filed.
(6) Property that otherwise qualifies for a Forest Land Conservation Use Covenant shall exclude the entire value of any residence and its underlying property. This provision for excluding the underlying property of a residence from eligibility in the conservation use covenant shall only apply to property that is first made subject to a covenant or is subject to the renewal of a previous covenant. Additionally, in conjunction with the covenant application, the taxpayer shall provide any one of the following types of property boundary descriptions regarding such underlying property:
(a) A plat of the underlying property prepared by a licensed land surveyor, showing the location and measured area of the underlying property in question;
(b) A written legal description of the underlying property delineating the legal metes and bounds and measured area of the underlying property in question; or
(c) Such other alternative property boundary description as mutually agreed upon by the taxpayer and county assessors. An acceptable alternative property boundary description may include a parcel map drawn by the county cartographer or GIS technician.

Rule 560-11-11-.04 QFLP Application

(1) The Commissioner hereby adopts the form in Regulation 560-11-11-.11 Exhibit (A), as the Form to be used by all counties as the application for the FLPA.
(2) All applicants for QFLP designation shall include with their application
(a) A plat of the tract for which QFLP designation is sought.
(b) A written legal description of the tract.
(3) If a legal description or plat is contested by the county, then the county shall have the burden to prove its assertion that the plat or legal description as provided by the applicant is deficient.

Rule 560-11-11-.05 Period for Local Board of Assessors to Approve or Deny QFLP Applications

(1) A Local Board of Tax Assessors shall have one hundred twenty days from receipt of an application for QFLP designation to approve or deny such application.
(2) The application must be filed with the Local Board of Tax Assessors no later than the last day for filing ad valorem tax appeals of the annual notice of assessment, except that in the case of property which is the subject of a tax appeal of the annual notice of assessment under O.C.G.A. § 48-5-311, an application for forest land conservation use assessment may be filed at any time while such appeal is pending.
(3) Upon approval, the Local Board of Tax Assessors must notify the applicant within thirty (30) days of its decision and provide the QFLP Covenant to the applicant for signatures.
(4) Upon denial of an Application, the Local Board of Tax Assessors must notify the applicant in the manner provided for in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-306.
(5) If an Application is denied by the Local Board of Tax Assessors, any fees advanced by the applicant shall be returned to the applicant within thirty (30) days of the denial by the Local Board of Tax Assessors.

Rule 560-11-11-.06 QFLP Covenant

(1) All contiguous tracts of an owner within a county for which forest land conservation use assessment is sought shall be in a single covenant unless otherwise required by law.
(2) The QFLP Covenant shall
(a) Be signed and recorded in any county where the tract is located and owner(s) have made application and received approval for QFLP designation.
1. The QFLP Covenant shall be signed by all owner(s) of record of the tract.
2. An individual may sign on behalf of the owner(s) of record by providing that such person has established that individual has sufficient legal authority satisfactory to the Local Board of Tax Assessors, to act on behalf of the owner(s).
(b) Have an effective date of January 1 of the year for which the application was filed and the QFLP Covenant is signed by all required parties.
(3) An applicant receiving a favorable ruling for an appeal shall receive all benefits derived from the QFLP Covenant beginning in the year for which the application was filed, irrespective of if the appeal is not resolved until subsequent year(s).
(4) The QFLP Covenant and benefits derived therefrom shall not extend to any portion of the tract for which the QFLP Covenant has not yet been signed and recorded in that county's real property index.

Rule 560-11-11-.07 Notice of Breach

(1) The Notice of Breach shall be sent within thirty (30) days from the day that the breach is reported to or discovered by the Local Board of Tax Assessors to
(a) The owner(s) of record of the real property in breach.
(b) The Local Board of Tax Assessors in every other county where the QFLP is located.
(2) The Notice of Breach shall include the following:
(a) The location of the breach;
(b) The date the breach was reported or discovered;
(c) An explanation of the breach;
(d) Whether the remedy is remediation or cease and desist of the breach;
(e) The date by which the remedy must be completed; and
(f) The penalty for not remedying or ceasing or desisting the breach.
(3) The thirty (30) day period for the owner to remedy the breach shall not begin until the owner has received a Notice of Breach that complies with the requirements set forth in this Regulation.

Rule 560-11-11-.08 Notification and Inspection Concerning QFLP in Breach of Covenant

(1) The owner(s) of record of the tract of real property in breach shall have thirty (30) days from the date of receipt of the Notice of Breach by any owner of record to remedy the breach as specified in the Notice of Breach.
(2) Beginning on the first day after the thirty (30) day period for an owner(s) of record of the tract of real property to remedy the breach, the Local Board of Tax Assessors shall have forty-five (45) days in which to conduct a physical inspection of the real property to determine if the prescribed remedy has been completed.
(3) The Local Board of Tax Assessors shall have fifteen (15) days from the date of the physical inspection or the end of the inspection period, whichever is later, to send a written notice to the owner(s) of record of the tract, and any counties that encompass the tract subject to the breached QFLP Covenant, to inform the owner(s) whether the tract of real property is in compliance with the QFLP Covenant.
(a) Failure to inspect the tract of real property shall be deemed a determination that the tract is in compliance with the QFLP Covenant.
(4) If a QFLP Covenant covers multiple counties then the Local Board of Tax Assessors in the county where the breach has occurred shall send the same written notifications to the Local Board of Tax Assessors in all affected counties where the QFLP Covenant is in force and effect.
(a) Such written notifications shall be sent within the same time period, and in the same manner, as the written notification sent to the owner(s) of record notifying them of the breach and the determination of whether or not the tract is in compliance with the QFLP Covenant.
(5) Appeals concerning notice, inspection or any other issue, must be made in the manner provided for in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-311.
(6) Notifications required by this Regulation that are sent by the Local Board of Tax Assessors to owner(s) of record of the tract subject to QFLP Covenant; and to any other counties where the tract is located and subject to the QFLP Covenant, shall be sent via certified mail by the United States Postal Service, commercial delivery service, commercial courier, or personal service to the last known address of the owner(s) of record.

Rule 560-11-11-.09 Release of Covenant

(1) When a tract of real property is no longer eligible as a QFLP due to a non-remedied breach, or at the expiration of the QFLP Covenant, the owner of such tract of real property shall file an application with the Local Board of Tax Assessors for release of the tract of real property from the QFLP Covenant
(a) Within sixty (60) days of the last day the tract was eligible as QFLP; or
(b) Within sixty (60) days of the last day of the QFLP Covenant.
(2) The Local Board of Tax Assessors must within fifteen (15) days from receipt of an application for release, determine if all taxes and penalties, if applicable, have been paid and satisfied on the tract of real property.
(a) Upon approval of the application for release of the tract real property from the QFLP Covenant, the Local Board of Tax Assessors shall have fifteen (15) days to
1. Provide written notification to the applicant that the release has been approved.
2. File the release with the office of the Clerk of Superior Court in the county where the original QFLP Covenant was filed, and provide a copy to the applicant.
(3) If an application for release is denied, the Local Board of Tax Assessors shall send written notification to the applicant within fifteen (15) days of receipt of such application and it shall include the reason(s) for denial.
(a) Appeals resulting from denial of release shall be made in the manner provided for in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-311.

Rule 560-11-11-.10 Penalty for Breach

(1) If a breach should occur during the QFLP Covenant period then a penalty shall be imposed by the Local Board of Tax Assessors.
(a) The method for calculating the amount of the penalty owed is set forth in O.C.G.A § 48-5-7.7(m).
(b) Penalties and interest imposed pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7, shall constitute a lien against that portion of the property which is subject of the original covenant, and shall be collected in the same manner as unpaid ad valorem taxes.
(2) If all or part of the tract subject of the original QFLP Covenant is transferred during a the covenant period to another qualified owner, and following such transfer the acquiring owner and/or transferring owner cause a breach of the covenant, then:
(a) Any county affected by the breach must seek recovery of penalties and interest from the breaching party by any judicial means including but not limited to; foreclosure of the breaching party's property.
(3) Activities listed in O.C.G.A. § 48-5-7.7(q)shall not constitute a breach of the QFLP Covenant.
(4) If a contiguous tract is subject to a QFLP Covenant in multiple counties then a breach occurring in any of the counties where the contiguous tract is located shall constitute a breach of the entire contiguous tract. The owner of the contiguous tract shall be assessed all penalties and interest resulting from the breach of the QFLP Covenant.
(5) If a breach occurs solely as the result of a Permissible Breach then no penalty shall be assessed but the QFLP Covenant will be terminated.

Rule 560-11-11-.11 Forms

(1) The Commissioner hereby adopts
(a) Exhibit (A) as the Form for QFLP Application,
(b) Exhibit (B) as the Form for the QFLP Covenant,
(c) Exhibit (C) as the Form for the Notice of Breach, and
(d) Exhibit (D) as the Form for the Application for Release.

Rule 560-11-11-.12 Table of Forest Land Protection Act Land Use Values

(1) For the purpose of prescribing the 2020 current use values for conservation use land, the state shall be divided into the following nine Forest Land Protection Act Valuation Areas (FLPAVA 1 through FLPAVA 9) and the following accompanying table of per acre land values shall be applied to each acre of qualified land within the FLPAVA for each soil productivity classification for timber land (W1 through W9):
(a) CUVA #1 counties: Bartow, Catoosa, Chattooga, Dade, Floyd, Gordon, Murray, Paulding, Polk, Walker, and Whitfield. Table of per acre values: W1 903, W2 810, W3 736, W4 675, W5 619, W6 573, W7 537, W8 493, W9 450;
(b) CUVA #2 counties: Barrow, Cherokee, Clarke, Cobb, Dawson, DeKalb, Fannin, Forsyth, Fulton, Gilmer, Gwinnett, Hall, Jackson, Lumpkin, Oconee, Pickens, Towns, Union, Walton, and White. Table of per acre values: W1 1,223, W2 1,107, W3 999, W4 904, W5 833, W6 782, W7 737, W8 677, W9 614;
(c) CUVA #3 counties: Banks, Elbert, Franklin, Habersham, Hart, Lincoln, Madison, Oglethorpe, Rabun, Stephens, and Wilkes. Table of per acre values: W1 1,199, W2 1,043, W3 941, W4 904, W5 833, W6 762, W7 641, W8 521, W9 436;
(d) CUVA #4 counties: Carroll, Chattahoochee, Clayton, Coweta, Douglas, Fayette, Haralson, Harris, Heard, Henry, Lamar, Macon, Marion, Meriwether, Muscogee, Pike, Schley, Spalding, Talbot, Taylor, Troup, and Upson. Table of per acre values: W1 882, W2 790, W3 716, W4 657, W5 571, W6 533, W7 463, W8 400, W9 325;
(e) CUVA #5 counties: Baldwin, Bibb, Bleckley, Butts, Crawford, Dodge, Greene, Hancock, Houston, Jasper, Johnson, Jones, Laurens, Monroe, Montgomery, Morgan, Newton, Peach, Pulaski, Putnam, Rockdale, Taliaferro, Treutlen, Twiggs, Washington, Wheeler, and Wilkinson. Table of per acre values: W1 751, W2 696, W3 639, W4 585, W5 528, W6 475, W7 416, W8 360, W9 299;
(f) CUVA #6 counties: Bulloch, Burke, Candler, Columbia, Effingham, Emanuel, Glascock, Jefferson, Jenkins, McDuffie, Richmond, Screven, and Warren. Table of per acre values: W1 743, W2 682, W3 623, W4 567, W5 506, W6 449, W7 389, W8 328, W9 267;
(g) CUVA #7 counties: Baker, Calhoun, Clay, Decatur, Dougherty, Early, Grady, Lee, Miller, Mitchell, Quitman, Randolph, Seminole, Stewart, Sumter, Terrell, Thomas, and Webster. Table of per acre values: W1 796, W2 724, W3 660, W4 592, W5 522, W6 456, W7 389, W8 319, W9 252;
(h) CUVA #8 counties: Atkinson, Ben Hill, Berrien, Brooks, Clinch, Coffee, Colquitt, Cook, Crisp, Dooly, Echols, Irwin, Jeff Davis, Lanier, Lowndes, Telfair, Tift, Turner, Wilcox, and Worth. Table of per acre values: W1 866, W2 784, W3 702, W4 623, W5 541, W6 463, W7 381, W8 301, W9 245;
(i) CUVA #9 counties: Appling, Bacon, Brantley, Bryan, Camden, Charlton, Chatham, Evans, Glynn, Liberty, Long, McIntosh, Pierce, Tattnall, Toombs, Ware, and Wayne. Table of per acre values: W1 876, W2 790, W3 716, W4 637, W5 553, W6 477, W7 396, W8 316, W9 245.

Rule 560-11-11-.13 Valuation of Additional Qualified Property which is Contiguous to the Property in the Original Covenant

(1) If a qualified owner has entered into an original forest land conservation use covenant and subsequently acquires additional qualified property contiguous to the property in the original covenant, the qualified owner may elect to enter the subsequently acquired qualified property into the original covenant for the remainder of the fifteen (15) year period of the original covenant; provided, however, that such subsequently acquired qualified property shall be less than two hundred (200) acres.
(2) If the qualified owner makes such an election, then additional qualified property shall be valued in accordance with O.C.G.A. § 48-5-269.
(a) When calculating the additional qualified property's initial value, this initial value shall not be subject to the three percent (3%) limitation provided for in O.C.G.A. 48-5-271(b).

Exhibit (560-11-11) A


                image: ga/admin/2020/560-11-11_exhibit_a-1.jpg


                image: ga/admin/2020/560-11-11_exhibit_a-2.jpg

Exhibit (560-11-11) B


                image: ga/admin/2020/560-11-11_exhibit_b-1.jpg


                image: ga/admin/2020/560-11-11_exhibit_b-2.jpg


                image: ga/admin/2020/560-11-11_exhibit_b-3.jpg

Exhibit (560-11-11) C Notice of Breach of Covenant Forest Land Protection Act of 2008

Click to view image


                image: ga/admin/2020/560-11-11-c1-1.png


                image: ga/admin/2020/560-11-11-c1-2.png

Exhibit (560-11-11) D Application for Release of Covenant Forest Land Conservation Use Property

Click to view image


                image: ga/admin/2020/560-11-11-d1-1.png