close
close

Georgia is one step closer to establishing Ocmulgee Mounds as its first national park and wildlife refuge – 41NBC News

Georgia Senator Jon Ossoff introduced legislation to establish Ocmulgee Mounds as Georgia's first national park and wildlife refuge. The bill was introduced in Congress after receiving bipartisan support from nearly the entire Georgia delegation.

MACON, Ga. (41NBC/WMGT) – Georgia Senator Jon Ossoff has introduced legislation to establish Ocmulgee Mounds as Georgia's first national park and wildlife refuge. The bill was introduced in Congress after receiving bipartisan support from nearly the entire Georgia delegation.

Senator Ossoff held a press conference on Thursday to discuss the importance of the bill and the potential economic impact on the local economy.

“What an extraordinary partnership this has been, at a moment of political division and even hatred,” he said. “This is the tonic Georgia needs now.”

If the Ocmulgee Mounds become a national park and wildlife refuge, it could generate $230 million in economic impact and more than $30 million in tax revenue for communities in the region, according to Seth Clark, executive director of Ocmulgee National Park have conservation initiative.

Clark also stated that this could increase visitor numbers to over one million per year. In addition to the economic impact, the legislation also provides a path for shared governance with the Muscogee Creek Nation, which is a strong ally of this project.

“The reconciliation that it provides to these two communities is really hard to put into words, but it is very special and a very historic aspect of this legislation,” Clark said.

Tracie Revis, advocacy director for the Ocmulgee National Park and Preserve Initiative, shared how important this legislation is to her community.

“We know how sacred these lands are. We built our houses here. We built these ancient civilizations in these lands here in middle Georgia and given the history of the land, we were moved to Oklahoma,” she said. “So this legislation not only gives us an opportunity to come back and be on the land, but also to help manage and maintain our home again.”

The bill is now in the hands of the House and Senate.

Anna Harden

Learn More →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *