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Oconee Commissioners, Watkinsville Mayor Oppose Affordable Housing Bill

Credit: Lee Becker

Oconee County Board of Commissioners Chair John Daniell said on Tuesday that legislation introduced in the Georgia General Assembly last week, if passed, would “nullify” Oconee County’s Comprehensive Plan.

Oconee County Commissioner Chuck Horton called the legislation “an attack on local control.”

The two were reacting to House Bill 517, called the Georgia Homeowner Opportunity Act, introduced by Rep. Dale Washburn, Republican from Macon.

Watkinsville Mayor Brian Brodrick called the bill a bigger threat to the county than all of the shopping centers and subdivisions residents have been opposing.

The bill would prohibit counties and cities in the state from regulating building design of one- or two-family dwellings, unless those dwellings were in a historic district.

HB 517 has been assigned to the House Governmental Affairs Committee, on which Oconee County Rep. Houston Gaines sits.

Gaines and Marcus Wiedower, who also represents Oconee County in the Georgia House, have not responded to a question asking for their position of HB 517.

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