Bulloch Co. residents express concerns about ongoing growth

Published: Nov. 17, 2023 at 9:46 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 17, 2023 at 11:15 PM EST
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BULLOCH COUNTY, Ga. (WTOC) - Growth is nothing new to Georgia especially in recent years.

Numbers from Bulloch County show that population have been on a steady rise since the 80s, and it does not look like it has any plans of slowing down.

A recent study done by the county expects the area to reach over 100,000 people by the year 2040 Which is why some who live there are worried that their lifestyle may be threatened by all the growth.

Bulloch County officials have been hosting a series of meetings to get citizen feedback on this exact topic. They know growth is coming, there is no way around that but the fear of some people in places like Brooklet is the small town feel they love will soon be lost.

According to the Census Data, the town of Brooklet has a little less than 12,000 people within its borders.

“We wanted to live in the country we didn’t want to live on top of people.”

But each year that number is going up. People who live there say that the small town feel is what they think attracts many to rural Georgia but they fear having more people looking for that small town feeling will create big-town problems.

Lawton Sack is one of the residents who came to a public input meeting in Brooklet this week and says that he is nervous about how much rezoning and permitting is happening.

“Overall, I would like for things to slow down, a lot of approvals of permitting subdivisions and large communities and we need to have a masterplan in place before we continue to grow anymore,” said Sack.

Subdivisions and roadways are two topics that the citizens of Brooklet say they are anxious about.

“There is more volume on that road already and there is more coming, we know it’s coming,” said David Bennett.

As part of the county’s long-term transportation plan, they came right to the city of Brooklet for input.

“We wanted to get folks’ input on what types of transportation that they might need to service that growth and what areas they would like to be protected.”

What the county calls a long-term project, citizens like Sack see as short-minded.

“I think the data that they collected today is going to be outdated by the time they finish it next year.”

Every five years the county is required to complete an updated comprehensive plan but Bulloch County revised its last plan in 2019 and will be continuing to hold community input meetings throughout the end of this year and into 2024.