Georgia State Parks Manager of the Year is Danny Tatum
Danny Tatum from Tallulah Gorge State Park was named Manager of the Year during the recent State Park Managers Conference. Tatum has worked for the Georgia Department of Natural Resources for 32 years and is also former chief of the DNR’s Search and Rescue Team.
According to Region Manager Joe Yeager, Tatum’s leadership has been instrumental in increasing revenue and attendance at one of north Georgia’s most beloved parks. Tallulah Gorge’s grounds and facilities are well kept, and the park recently assumed operation of the campground and beach which had been operated by Georgia Power.
Tatum first began his career as a summertime employee at Unicoi State Park. Since then, he’s held management positions at Amicalola Falls, Moccasin Creek, Fort Mountain and Black Rock Mountain state parks. Tatum plans to retire at the end of the year.
THE NEXT DNR BOARD MEETINGS WILL BE HELD ON WEDNESDSAY, SEPTEMBER 28 2016, IN THE DNR BOARDROOM:
· COMMITTEE MEETINGS WILL BEGIN AT 9:00 A.M.
· BOARD MEETING WILL BEGIN IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING THE COMMITTEE MEETINGS
· EXECUTIVE SESSION OF THE LAND COMMITTEE WILL BE HELD IMMEDIATELY FOLLOWING THE BOARD MEETING
Law Enforcement Division
On September 12th, Region IV-Macon Rangers responded to a hunting incident in Heard County. They determined, through the initial investigation, that a 15-year-old male was bow hunting deer from a climbing tree stand and was attempting to attach a safety harness to the tree, when he fell, injuring his leg and knocking the breath from him. The victim was transported to Tanner Medical Center in Carrollton with non-serious injuries.
Recently, Major Thomas Barnard graduated from the National Association of Conservation Law Enforcement Chief’s (NACLEC) Leadership Academy at the National Conservation Training Center in Shepherdstown, WV. The academy prepares conservation law enforcement executives to successfully carry out the conservation law enforcement mission in a rapidly changing world. It provides education on contemporary issues, trends, management and leadership skills and abilities needed by executive level conservation LE leaders in state and federal agencies.
On September 14th, Rangers from Region III-Thomson received a tip from a Facebook post that an individual had released 14 ball pythons in the Augusta area. After a brief investigation, a male suspect was identified and interviewed. He admitted to accidentally letting three of the snakes escape in Georgia (all were recovered), and intentionally releasing the others in South Carolina. He was charged with “Unlawful Release/Escape of Wild Animal.”
Coastal Resources Division
Staff attended a joint meeting of the Operations and Advisors Committees of the Atlantic Coastal Cooperative Statistics Program (ACCSP). The primary objective was to review and rank proposals competing for $3.5M for improvements in marine fisheries catch-and-effort data collection along the Atlantic Coast. CRD are currently conducting a project funded by ACCSP focused on improving commercial seafood data collection.
Staff hosted a brownbag presentation with speaker Courtney Reich from Ecological Planning Group who presented the results from a Coastal Incentive Grant project studying the human population carrying capacity of Tybee Island.
Staff attended a working group meeting hosted by the Governors South Atlantic Alliance to discuss development of a Clean and Resilient Marina Program for the Southeast.
Historic Preservation Division
Director Dave Crass and Outreach Program Manager Allison Asbrock met with staff from the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation last week to begin planning for the annual statewide Historic Preservation Conference next spring, in Madison, GA.
HPD staff visited the Andersonville Train Depot, in Andersonville, to review a transportation enhancement project. The project proposes to renovate the National Register of Historic Places-eligible Andersonville Depot to house the City’s Offices and Welcome Center. The project includes both interior and exterior work on the Depot.
Wildlife Resources Division
Fisheries staff harvested 6,600 catchable size channel catfish at the Steve Cocke State Fish Hatchery in Dawson. These fish were distributed to several PFAs across Georgia for Kids Fishing Events being held this Saturday, September 24th, in association with National Hunting and Fishing Day.
Nongame coastal staff responded to 13 post-hatchling loggerhead sea turtles stranded on the beach by Tropical Storm Julia. The hatchlings were taken to the Georgia Sea Turtle Center and will likely be released offshore within a week.
3732 deer have been reported through Georgia Game Check so far! Only 23 days til firearms season starts.
Parks Recreation & Historic Sites
Sept. 19 – Tallulah Gorge State Park Manager Danny Tatum was presented with a proclamation from the Habersham County Board of Commissioners at their September meeting honoring him for his dedication, contributions and service. Danny was recently named 2016 Park Manager of the Year and will be retiring December, 2016.
Sept. 19 – 21 – The third Park Ranger Fundamentals class was held at Fort Yargo with 14 participants. Day and night sessions included park rules, regulations and dealing with violations and SAR scenarios. Other park staff participated in a playground inspection class and archery instructor class that were held this week.
Sept. 22 – Twenty-two participants attended Aviation Training held at Tallulah Gorge State Park including 10 DNR Search and Rescue team members. Six of those members attended for the first time.
EPD assisted the Governor’s Office with a request to US EPA to issue a waiver for summer gasoline requirements. This was done in response to a fuel pipeline leak in Alabama, which caused spotty gasoline shortages in the Southeast.
A public hearing on proposed amendments to the Rules for Air Quality Control pertaining to the Startup, Shutdown and Malfunction of air pollution control equipment will be held at 1:00 p.m. on October 3, 2016 at EPD’s Tradeport Training Room located at 4244 International Pkwy, Suite 116, Atlanta, GA 30354. More information is available at https://epd.georgia.gov/chapter-391-3-1-air-quality-control.
A public hearing on proposed amendments to the Rules for Air Quality Control pertaining to Enhanced Inspection and Maintenance (vehicle emissions) will be held at 2:30 p.m. on October 3, 2016 at EPD’s Tradeport Training Room located at 4244 International Pkwy, Suite 116, Atlanta, GA 30354. More information is available at https://epd.georgia.gov/chapter-391-3-20-rules-enhanced-inspection-and-maintenance.
A stakeholder meeting to discuss the reissuance of the Phase I Medium MS4 NPDES Municipal Stormwater Permits will be held at 10:00 a.m. on October 14, 2016 at the Georgia Department of Transportation – Macon Area Conference Room, 4499 Riverside Drive, Macon, Georgia 31210. The Permit reissuance will authorize the discharges of stormwater from the MS4 to the waters of the State of Georgia for the period from 2017-2022. A draft permit template is available for review at this address: http://epd.georgia.gov/storm-water
A Joint Regional Water Planning Council Meeting for the Altamaha, Coastal Georgia, Middle Ocmulgee, Savannah-Upper Ogeechee, Suwannee-Satilla and Upper Oconee Councils will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, October 6, 2016 at the DuBose Porter Center, Oconee Fall Line Technical College (South Campus), 560 Pinehill Road, Dublin, GA 31021.
A Joint Regional Water Planning Council Meeting for the Coosa-North Georgia Water Planning Council and the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District (Metro District) will be held on Tuesday, October 18, 2016 at Chattahoochee Technical College, 100 Campus Drive, Jasper, GA 30143. Meeting time is to be determined.