2010 Georgia Code
TITLE 12 - CONSERVATION AND NATURAL RESOURCES
CHAPTER 3 - PARKS, HISTORIC AREAS, MEMORIALS, AND RECREATION
ARTICLE 8 - NONGAME WILDLIFE CONSERVATION AND WILDLIFE HABITAT ACQUISITION PROGRAMS
§ 12-3-602 - Establishment of programs and activities; Nongame Wildlife Conservation and Wildlife Habitat Acquisitions Fund; income tax return form contribution option; administrative costs of voluntary contribution program
. Establishment of programs and activities; Nongame Wildlife Conservation and Wildlife Habitat Acquisitions Fund; income tax return form contribution option; administrative costs of voluntary contribution program
(a) The department shall establish nongame wildlife conservation programs and wildlife habitat acquisition programs and educational and promotional activities in support thereof to enhance the protection of nongame wildlife and the nonconsumptive use thereof by the citizens of Georgia. To support such programs, the department may, without limitation, promote and solicit voluntary contributions through the income tax return contribution mechanism established in subsection (c) of this Code section, through offers to match contributions by any person with moneys appropriated or contributed to the department for such programs, or through any fund raising or other promotional techniques deemed appropriate by the department.
(b) There is established a special fund to be known as the "Nongame Wildlife Conservation and Wildlife Habitat Acquisition Fund." This fund shall consist of all moneys contributed under subsection (a) of this Code section, all moneys transferred to the department under subsection (c) of this Code section, and any other moneys contributed to this fund or to the nongame wildlife conservation and wildlife habitat acquisition programs of the department and all interest thereon. All balances in the fund shall be deposited in an interest-bearing account identifying the fund and shall be carried forward each year so that no part thereof may be deposited in the general treasury. The department shall administer the fund and may expend moneys held in the fund in furtherance of its nongame wildlife conservation programs and its wildlife habitat acquisition programs and related educational and promotional projects. Contributions to the fund shall be deemed supplemental to and shall in no way supplant funding that would otherwise be appropriated for these purposes. The department shall prepare, by February 1 of each year, an accounting of the funds received and expended from the fund. The report shall be made available to the members of the Board of Natural Resources and to members of the public on request.
(c) (1) Unless an earlier date is deemed feasible and established by the Governor, each Georgia income tax return form for taxable years beginning on or after January 1, 1989, shall contain appropriate language, to be determined by the state revenue commissioner, offering the taxpayer the opportunity to contribute to the Nongame Wildlife Conservation and Wildlife Habitat Acquisition Fund established in subsection (b) of this Code section by either donating all or any part of any tax refund due, by authorizing a reduction in the refund check otherwise payable, or by contributing any amount over and above any amount of tax owed by adding that amount to the taxpayer's payment. The instructions accompanying the income tax return form shall contain a description of the purposes for which this fund was established and the intended use of moneys received from the contributions. Each taxpayer required to file a state income tax return who desires to contribute to the Nongame Wildlife Conservation and Wildlife Habitat Acquisition Fund may designate such contribution as provided in this Code section on the appropriate income tax return form.
(2) The Department of Revenue shall determine annually the total amount so contributed, shall withhold therefrom a reasonable amount for administering this voluntary contribution program, and shall transmit the balance to the department for deposit in the Nongame Wildlife Conservation and Wildlife Habitat Acquisition Fund established in subsection (b) of this Code section; provided, however, the amount retained for administrative costs shall not exceed $50,000.00 per year. If, in any tax year, the administrative costs of the Department of Revenue for collecting contributions pursuant to this Code section exceed the sum of such contributions, the administrative costs which the Department of Revenue is authorized to withhold from such contributions shall not exceed the sum of such contributions.
Graham Syfert - Jacksonville Lawyer