The Urban Redevelopment Act was adopted in 1955 and has been amended several times since its establishment. The “Urban Redevelopment Act” may be found at O.C.G.A. §36-61-1.
The legislative findings and declaration of necessity for urban redevelopment powers are found in O.C.G.A. §36-61-3 and state:
“It is found and declared that there exist in municipalities and counties of this state slum areas, as defined in paragraph (18) of Code Section 36-61-2, which constitute a serious and growing menace, injurious to the public health, safety, morals, and welfare of the residents of this state; that the existence of such areas contributes substantially and increasingly to the spread of disease and crime, constitutes an economic and social liability, substantially impairs or arrests the sound growth of municipalities and counties, retards the provision of housing accommodations, aggravates traffic problems, and substantially impairs or arrests the elimination of traffic hazards and the improvement of traffic facilities; and that the prevention and elimination of slums is a matter of state policy and state concern, in order that the state and its municipalities and counties shall not continue to be endangered by areas which are local centers of disease, promote juvenile delinquency, and, while contributing little to the tax income of the state and its municipalities and counties, consume an excessive proportion of its revenues because of the extra services required for police, fire, accident, hospitalization, and other forms of public protection, services, and facilities. (b) It is further found and declared that certain slum areas or portions thereof may require acquisition, clearance, and disposition, subject to use restrictions, as provided in this chapter, since the prevailing condition of decay may make impracticable the reclamation of the area by conservation or rehabilitation; that the other areas or portions thereof, through the means provided in this chapter, may be susceptible of conservation or rehabilitation in such a manner that the conditions and evils enumerated in subsection (a) of this Code section may be eliminated, remedied, or prevented and that, to the extent that is feasible, salvable slum areas should be conserved and rehabilitated through voluntary action and the regulatory process. (c) It is further found and declared that the powers conferred by this chapter are for public uses and purposes for which public money may be expended and the power of eminent domain may be exercised. The necessity, in the public interest, for the provisions enacted in this chapter is declared as a matter of legislative determination.”
(Any exercise of eminent domain would be subject to Georgia’s revised standards adopted in 2006, limiting the property to public use only.)