Latest Updates and News

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** Latest updates on the pending legal challenges **

February 6, 2024: No2Rivian group wins appeal over paying $364K bond in zoning lawsuit. – Morgan County Citizen
* The No2Rivian plaintiffs, who are involved in several suits against the State of Georgia over the incoming $5 billion Rivian Electric Vehicle (EV) megafactory, have won an appeal, reversing The Fulton County Superior Court ruling that ordered the group to pay a $364,619 bond in order to continue with the zoning lawsuit. *

February 5, 2024: No2Rivian Group Files Appeal Causing Multi-Million Dollar Limbo. – No2Rivian Facebook Group
* After a Morgan County Superior Court Judge dismissed a lawsuit in early January, which aimed to force Rivian and the State of Georgia to comply with local Morgan County zoning ordinances, the No2Rivian plaintiffs filed an appeal on Jan. 31 hoping to have the ruling overturned. The No2Rivian group, based out of Rutledge, believes an appeal is warranted, not only to enforce local zoning standards onto the Rivian project, but to prevent a “dangerous precedent” from being set in all cases in which the State of Georgia buys or acquires land to develop for the purposes of private industry. *

July 17, 2023: Georgia Supreme Court declines to hear anti-Rivian appeal.

May 25, 2023: The Court of Appeals of Georgia has granted our request for interlocutory appeal regarding the order of Fulton County Court that would require No2Rivian plaintiffs to put up $364,000 bond.

May 8, 2023: Attorneys gave notice of appellees’ intention to petition for a writ of certiorari to the Supreme Court of the State of Georgia to review the opinion and judgment of the Court of Appeals in this appeal entered on April 28, 2023. This is with regards to Judge Trammell’s orginal ruling on the $15 billion bond for title and her decision that the lease agreement between the JDA and Rivian was a taxable estate for years.

>> Click here to view the notice to file against the State of Georgia <<

>> Click here to view the notice to file against the Joint Development Authority of Jasper County, Morgan County, Newton County, and Walton County (the JDA) <<

May 1, 2023: An application for interlocutory appeal was filed with the Court of Appeals of Georgia to review the order of Fulton County Court that would require No2Rivian plaintiffs to put up $364,000 bond.

(From the introduction)
This application for interlocutory appeal arises out of an action filed by Appellants in the Superior Court of Fulton County seeking declaratory and injunctive relief that a private automobile manufacturing facility to be located partially on certain property located in Morgan County, Georgia, (“Project” or “Rivian Project”) is subject to local zoning and development ordinances, as well as certain State laws applicable to such development. The trial court improperly granted the State of Georgia’s (“State”) Motion for Bond pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 50-15-2. This Court should grant Appellants’ application for interlocutory appeal because the ruling has a chilling effect by effectively denying and discouraging private citizens from being able to challenge questionable actions of the State.

The General Assembly has expressly declared “that it is in the public interest to encourage participation by the citizens of Georgia in matters of public significance and public interest through the exercise of their constitutional rights of petition and freedom of speech.” O.C.G.A. § 9-11-11.1(a). If this Court allows the decision below to stand, the General Assembly’s words will ring hollow, resulting in a chilling effect on Georgia citizens’ ability to seek redress in the judicial system concerning matters of public importance for which there is a clear and justiciable issue for review.

>> Click here to view the Application for Discretionary Appeal <<

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July 27, 2023: EV mega-deals pit states against the South’s rural communities – Facing South
* In January 2022, a band of residents organized the Rutledge Opposes Rivian Assembly Plant group under the legal entity Morgan Land, Sky & Water Preservation, Inc., raising $125,000 in under a week to bring a legal challenge to halt construction of the plant. According to the group’s website, organizers have serious concerns about the environmental impacts of the plant, the methods used by Georgia governor Brian Kemp’s administration to court Rivian and an alleged lack of transparency from state and county government officials.

No2Rivian claims the site of the proposed plant sits in an important area for groundwater recharge and that a construction project of this magnitude would contaminate groundwater and well water — a source of drinking water for many local residents. A report from the Northeast Georgia Regional Commission examining the regional effects for the project echoes the first concern, noting that millions of square feet of land will be converted to impervious surfaces, hindering groundwater recharge. *

May 25, 2023: Appeals court to decide whether Rivian critics must pre-pay legal fees – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
* The Georgia Court of Appeals agreed Thursday to take up the case after a Fulton County judge ordered opponents of the Rivian EV factory to pay $365,000 to cover legal costs and attorney’s fees for the state and a local development authority. The local judge ordered the plaintiffs to pre-pay legal fees under what’s known as a petition for bond, a tactic designed to discourage frivolous lawsuits against local and state governments. John Christy, an Atlanta attorney representing the plaintiffs, previously said the state is trying to “discourage” his clients’ litigation. Christy’s clients won’t have to pay a penny while the matter is under appeal and unless the previous ruling is affirmed. *

May 19, 2023: Lithium is driving the clean car revolution. Will the South pay a price? – The Post and Courier
* The Nature Conservancy initially partnered with Rivian on a campaign for environmentally responsible off-roading. But, very quickly, it boiled into a lot of controversy. The Nature Conservancy reportedly walked back its support of Rivian, taking a neutral stance on the Georgia site. The Nature Conservancy declined to comment on its stance on the Georgia factory. *

May 1, 2023: Fulton County Court orders No2Rivian plaintiffs to put up $364,000 bond – Morgan County Citizen
* Those in control of our State and local government will stop at nothing to silence the voices of the citizens. Requiring citzens to post a $364,000 bond before their case can be heard is obvioulsly an attempt to financially prohibit the citizens case from moving forward. What’s next and how draconian will the government become? Will citizens be required to post a bond before they can challenge a traffic citation in court? In effect, if that citizen doesn’t prevail in fighting the ticket, not only do they pay the fine for the citation, but also the fees of the prosecuting attorney. *

May 1, 2023: Rivian’s tax incentives can move forward after court decision – Atlanta Business Chronicle
* Although this is a win for the State and JDA (Joint Development Authority of Jasper, Morgan, Newton, and Walton County) the decision will likely be appealed to the Georgia Supreme Court, according to previous interviews with opponents of the massive plant. *

April 28, 2023: Appeals court largely sides with state in case over Rivian incentives – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
* John Christy, an attorney representing seven Morgan County residents who oppose the EV project, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution he’s disappointed by the panel’s ruling. He said he’s reviewing the 48-page opinion and will likely file a notice to appeal within 10 days. He said he hopes his clients “will be vindicated” by the Georgia Supreme Court. *

April 12, 2023: Georgia Is Shoveling Cash Into a Failing Electric Vehicle Company – reason.com
* In 2021, the state of Georgia made an expensive bet on an unproven company that could be headed for financial catastrophe. *

April 10, 2023: An open letter to Rivian CEO – Morgan County Citizen
* An excellent open letter written by a member of the community *

DEAR MR. RJ SCARINGE:
By now we imagine you’ve formed as strong an opinion of those who oppose your plant in our community as we have of you, your ambitions and your company. For over a year, each of us has talked “at” the other without spending any time talking “to” one another. Being stared at from the JDA side of the table by those who, in theory, are supposed to represent us, but who will not answer our questions, serves only to set a negative tone. But then again, opening with “this ship has sailed, “or “you should have known this was happening” and “Alan Verner always left the room” probably didn’t help much either.

We have now been reduced to communicating through the hardened rhetoric of lawyers, paid spokespersons, internet hecklers, and gullible media, which in truth, is no communication at all.     >>Click here to continue reading<<

March 29, 2023: No2Rivian fundraiser draws hundreds, raises thousands of dollars to fight EV plant – Morgan County Citizen
* During Saturday’s barbecue, the No2Rivian’s attorney, John Christy, delivered remarks to update the crowd on the ongoing legal challenges currently before various courts in the state. No2Rivian is prepared to take their case all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court if their cases fail at the state level. Christy told the crowd that the current case before the Georgia Court of Appeals could languish for months before a final ruling is issued. That case, which will decide whether or not to uphold a Morgan County judge’s decision to deny $15 billion in bonds for Rivian and the state-brokered rental agreement for the EV manufacturer. *

February 23, 2023: A video of Court of Appeals oral arguments from February 15th, 2023 is now available (link below). The ruling from the Court of Appeals should be made by April 30th, 2023. Their ruling will be posted on this website, so check back for updates.

>> Click here for the video of the Appeals Court proceedings. <<

>> Click here to view the brief by the State of Georgia <<

>> Click here to view the our response to the States brief <<

>> Click here to view the brief by the Joint Development Authority of Jasper, Morgan, Newton, and Walton County (JDA) <<

>> Click here to view the our response to the JDA brief brief <<

February 16, 2023: State urges appeals court to OK Rivian incentive deal – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
* “This whole bonds-for-title fictional scheme is problematic and probably something the Legislature needs to deal with,” Christy said. “But as the law stands now, there’s no difference in evaluating bonds-for-title (from) bonds backed by the government.” *

February 1, 2023: Two new lawsuits filed against Morgan County, State of Georgia to halt Rivian development – Morgan County Citizen
* Two new lawsuits, one against Morgan County and one against the State of Georgia, have been filed by six plaintiffs from the No2Rivian group, petitioning the courts to enforce local zoning ordinances upon the $5 billion Rivian Electric Vehicle (EV) manufacturing plant and to halt all land disturbance activities until the zoning disputes and the $15 billion bond validation appeals case is resolved. *

January 31, 2023: Rivian opponents refile lawsuits to challenge state’s site takeover – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
* John Christy, an attorney representing opponents of the development, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution his clients had to file two lawsuits, one in Fulton County and one in Morgan County, to individually sue the state and county. He said the state is trying to take over the project because a rezoning effort was threatened by local opposition. “It’s a question of whether or not the state can run roughshod over the citizens because the state wants something to be done even though it’s not for a public use or purpose,” Christy said. “It’s for a private enterprise.” If victorious, Christy said he’ll ask for the state to have to revert the land back to the way it was, which would likely cost millions of dollars. “While it may be illaudable that the state wants to make Georgia the EV capitol of the world, it can’t do so at the expense of its citizens and certainly not at the expense of the law,” Christy said.*

January 30, 2023: Two new legal actions were filed on Friday, January 27th.

Each case individually challenges the legality of the State of Georgia and Morgan County to bypass local zoning regulations. As you may recall, a suit was filed in November 2022 to compel the State, the Joint Development Authority (JDA), and Morgan County to go through the rezoning process. At the same time that, a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) was filed to stop the grading work occurring at the site. Unfortunately, the ruling for the TRO didn’t go in our favor. Our attorneys requested to withdraw the rezoning case without prejudice, meaning it could be rewritten and refiled. The state and JDA tried to stop the refiling but Judge Bradley said we could, so we did, on January 27th.

In 2020, the citizens of Georgia voted on a constitutional amendment to allow the State of Georgia and municipalities within the state to be sued rather than individuals within the state, county, or city. Only one governmental entity may be included in a single suit; therefore, we have filed two almost identical lawsuits. The legal actions are linked below. We will post updates as these progress through the court system.

>> Click here to view the petition that has been filed in The Superior Court of Fulton County <<

>> Click here to view the petition that has been filed in The Superior Court of Morgan County <<

January 24, 2023: Ship has yet to sail – Morgan County Citizen
* Another excellent, and inspirational, letter to the editor in the Morgan County Citizen! What a year it has been since that first community meeting! *

January 16, 2023: JDA shifts $2M for legal fees – Why? – Morgan County Citizen
* An awesome response to the Morgan County Citizen article regarding the JDA’s claims that they need to hold onto OUR county’s money to pay for legal fees fighting their own citizens. $2 million pales in comparison to the $700 million in tax breaks the JDA would like to give to Rivian. Leaving the taxpayers (of Jasper, Morgan, Newton and Walton Counties) on the hook for funding the increased infrastructure costs associated with the factory being built in our rural community. The JDA should have used that money to hire financial advisors to determine the viability of Rivian as well as to estimate the financial impact it would have upon future infrastructure costs. *

January 16, 2023: Anti-Rivian Residents Stand Strong as Gov. Kemp Touts GA as Nation’s EV Hub – UNCOVERDC
* This is a very informative and comprehensive article!! It pretty much describes how we got to where we are with the Development Authority, the Georgia Department of Economic Development, the Governor of Georgia, and Rivian. Our fight is far from over. On February 15th, the State Appellate Court will be hearing oral arguments regarding the Joint Development Authority’s appeal of the recent ruling (that was in our favor). There’s also another lawsuit in the works regarding zoning. Stay tuned… *

January 14, 2023: Governor pledges to ease local zoning restrictions. But how—and for whom? – Atlanta Civic Circle
* Everyone in Georgia needs to pay close attention to this action being pledged by Brian Kemp. By pushing Rivian on an unsuspecting community, Kemp has already shown his arrogant disregard for local zoning and environmental regulations.
From the article:
But the governor made it clear that the influx of jobs from carmakers like Rivian, Kia and Hyundai, among other companies that Georgia’s economic development agencies have attracted, amplifies the need for affordable housing statewide. “We want people to live in the community where they are working,” he said. “It cuts down on logistics. It cuts down on the need for infrastructure, and it just honestly makes for a better quality of life.”
Reached by email, the governor’s office did not expand on his plan for local zoning deregulation, but Georgia State University urban studies professor Dan Immergluck told Atlanta Civic Circle he’s concerned Kemp’s remarks “seem to suggest he only cares about affordable housing if it is needed to recruit large employers into the state.” *

January 13, 2023: In bid for big battery plant, Georgia anted up $358M in incentives – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
* The single largest component of the Freyr inducements were about $228 million in local property tax breaks that will stretch over 20 years. Coweta also offered Freyr a $20 million grant. The state agreed to provide nearly $90 million in sales tax exemptions for qualified machinery to be installed in the factory and construction materials used in building the plant. Nearly $11 million in tax savings will come from state tax credits granted for new jobs created. A $7 million state grant will offset land costs. Greg LeRoy (executive director of Good Jobs First) questioned why Georgia is willing to financially incentivize more job creation when unemployment remains near record-lows. “The vast majority of job takers will be people coming from elsewhere, even people moving into the labor market,” LeRoy said. He also said it’ll be nearly impossible for each new Freyr employee to generate enough local spending and tax revenue to justify the incentives averaging roughly $490,000 per job. *

January 12, 2023: Rivian and Lucid’s Q4 struggles signal an even tougher 2023 for EV startups – Business Insider
* The results from Rivian and Lucid signal a tough year ahead for EV startups, said Sam Fiorani, vice president of global vehicle forecasting for AutoForecast Solutions. “We’re moving into a time where it’s going to be more difficult for these companies to get the funding they need to keep going,” Fiorani told Insider, referring to tougher market conditions as interest rates rise. “As an investor you’re going to be watching for every sign of trouble because you’re now expecting a larger return on your investment.” “If you have momentum like an established player,” Fiorani said, “you will have the inertia you need to keep moving forward. But given the risky economic situation, buyers aren’t ready to bet on a largely unknown company.” *

January 4, 2023: Rivian Continues to Fall Apart – MSN
* Rivian cannot win. Its sales are too small, its backorder count is meaningless, and the market has started to fill up with competition. That competition will increase further this year and become a torrent by 2024. Rivian had its chance, particularly a year ago. Management bungled that and cost Rivian its future.

January 2, 2023: Rivian named ‘Worst Economic Development Deal’ of 2022 by national economic watchdog group – Morgan County Citizen
* The Center for Economic Accountability knocked the deal for including “insufficient due diligence, speculative returns, lack of concern for local impacts and convoluted structure set project apart in a historic year for corporate welfare megadeals.” *

December 27, 2022: Georgia’s Rivian Plant Subsidy Recognized as 2022’s “Worst Economic Development Deal of the Year” by the Center for Economic Accountability – The Center for Economic Accountability
* “In the worst year ever for giant state and local corporate welfare deals across the country, Georgia’s $1.5 billion Rivian subsidy still managed to stand out for the way that bureaucrats and elected officials completely failed in their responsibilities to the state’s residents and taxpayers,” said CEA President John C. Mozena. “They made a massive, speculative investment of taxpayer money in an early-stage company in a highly competitive and government policy-dependent industry without doing basic due diligence. They went to great lengths to get around the fact that Georgia has no law that gives them the authority to hand out property tax breaks. They didn’t do their homework on the downsides of this project for the communities where the plant would be built, they kept the people who would be impacted the most in the dark until the deal was almost done and then they went to great lengths to keep local leaders from having a say in what happens to their communities.” *

December 19, 2022: 2022: A Mega-Year for Megadeals! – Good Jobs First
* It used to be rare when a company wrested more than $1 billion from the public to open a facility. This year, that changed. In 2022, according to Good Jobs First’s analysis, there were eight economic development deals in which companies received at least $1 billion in subsidies — for a single facility. That’s an all-time record. *

December 13, 2022: It’s Time to Call Out America’s Corporate Welfare State – National Review
* Excerpt from the article: We got a historic peek behind the scenes at how little due diligence is done in deals with these companies in September when Ocmulgee Superior Courts Chief Judge Brenda Holbert Trammell — exercising her authority under Georgia statute to ensure that as much as $15 billion in public bond debt was being incurred in the public interest — was able to force economic-development officials to detail the work that had gone into a $1.5 dollar subsidy deal with start-up electric vehicle manufacturer Rivian. It was, at the time, the state’s largest economic development deal, and thanks in no small part to local activists who called her attention to flaws in the arrangement, Judge Holbert got agency representatives to admit that they had not retained any investment bankers, economists, or financial analysts to review the agreement. In an utter abdication of their nominal role as government employees tasked with protecting taxpayers’ interests, they hadn’t even pulled up Rivian’s public filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission to form an educated opinion on whether the company’s notable cash burn would allow it to survive long enough to start building trucks in Georgia. *

December 11, 2022: Anti-Rivian group withdraws lawsuit to halt excavation work at Rivian site – Morgan County Citizen
* On Dec. 7, five Rutledge plaintiffs filed a motion for a “voluntary dismissal without prejudice” to withdraw a lawsuit challenging the Rivian project on the grounds of the massive electric vehicle plant violating local zoning ordinances and grading work beginning without proper permitting. Atlanta Attorney John Christy representing the Rutledge plaintiffs isn’t throwing in the towel, but changing course on legal strategies to stop the Rivian development from coming to fruition. *

December 7, 2022: Lessons about Incentive Approval Risks from the Recent Rivian Court Decision – LEXOLOGY
* The economic development incentive for Rivian has apparently become the poster child of how NOT to approach the bond approval process. *

October 25, 2022: Rivian project hit with state violation, local lawsuit in dirt pollution controversy – SaportaReport
* … the agencies began site clearance by avoiding wetlands and waterways while awaiting permitting under the federal Clean Water Act and state statutes. The agencies have not directly explained why they chose to proceed with clearance and grading despite the incentives issue and until permitting is complete.” *

October 25, 2022: Anti-Rivian group slaps JDA, Morgan County with zoning lawsuit to halt EV plant – Morgan County Citizen
* The lawsuit alleges that although the site for Rivian is owned by the State of Georgia, the project should still be subject to local zoning ordinances, standards, and processes. The suit claims Rivian is a for-profit business that will not operate as a “state-function” and therefore, should not be exempt from local zoning laws. The State of Georgia took ownership of the site with the intent to lease the property to Rivian as a way to circumvent local zoning laws, since the state is typically exempt from such laws. *

Click here to read the latest lawsuit filed against the JDA and Morgan County

October 21, 2022: Rivian opponents sue to halt excavation work on Georgia EV plant site – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
* Residents near the future $5 billion Rivian electric vehicle plant sued Friday to try to stop grading work on the property, alleging the site isn’t properly zoned and that local officials are turning a blind eye. *

October 18, 2022: Dirt pollution complaints at controversial Rivian site underline critics’ environmental concerns – SaportaReport
* For the state and JDA to release a written statement like this, only emphasizes the level of contempt they have for our communities -> Excerpt from the article “The co-developers on Rivian’s behalf are the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDEcD) and the Joint Development Authority of Jasper, Morgan, Newton and Walton Counties (JDA). In a joint written statement, they did not explain exactly why they are proceeding with site clearing despite the bond and permitting status, only that they are legally and physically able to do so.” *

October 14, 2022: NORMAL IS BUYING 2 RIVIAN VEHICLES AND NOT TELLING YOU THE COST – BLNNEWS
* Toward the end of the article –> The latest fleece is what the Rivian property was appraised for since they now have to pay property taxes. After investing (according to the documentation) $500,000,000 the total assessed value is around $13,000,000. Property taxes are based on a third of that. Paying their FAIR SHARE? *

October 13, 2022: Report: At $13.8 Billion, Unnecessary Electric Vehicle Factory Subsidies Are in Overdrive – Good Jobs First
* In a megadeal spending spree like no other in U.S. history, states and localities have awarded more than $13.8 billion in economic development subsidies to at least 51 electric vehicle (EV) and EV battery factories, mostly in recent years. “We support EVs as a necessary and vital climate-change solution,” said Good Jobs First executive director Greg LeRoy, the report’s lead author. “But these megadeals are unnecessary. The dollars would be far better used making state economies more resilient to big changes coming to the auto supply chain and maintenance markets.” *

October 10, 2022: LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Where is the accountability in the Rivian deal? –
Rockdale Newton Citizen
* Excellent letter to the editor by Scott Gaither in response to a recent letter submitted to the Rockdale Newton Citizen. Pointing out some very important facts and asking questions that need to be answered. *

October 10, 2022: Rivian shares slumped after the company announced a big recall – msn.com
* Shares of Rivian Automotive fell sharply on Monday after the electric vehicle maker said late Friday that it is recalling more than 12,000 vehicles – nearly every EV it has made to date *

October 5, 2022: How Corporations Drain School Funding – Good Jobs First
Where we tell you all the cool stuff we’ve been up to including:
* new data that shows what corporate tax breaks cost schools
* the relationship between wage theft and company earnings
* what a judge said to Rivian when it tried to get hundreds of millions in tax breaks by skirting the State Constitution
* how Maine stood up the Walmarts of the state to get them to pay the taxes they owe

September 30, 2022: CEA statement on Rivian bond ruling in Georgia –
The Center For Economic Accountability
* Judge Brenda Holbert Trammell’s ruling against issuing the proposed Rivian bonds is a victory for taxpayers and the rule of law in Georgia. She shone a bright light on the way Georgia’s economic developers ignore the law, the public interest, state Constitution and basic common sense in their pursuit of headline-grabbing subsidy deals. *

September 30, 2022: Rivian plant in Georgia threatened by judge’s ruling on incentives – The Pantagraph
* A Georgia judge has shot down a central component of the $1.5 billion incentive package offered to electric vehicle startup Rivian. If the ruling survives a likely appeal, it would not only disrupt the Rivian project, but could provide a pathway for residents in other parts of the state to challenge controversial local property tax breaks to corporations and developers. The ruling is likely to send shockwaves through Georgia economic development circles, which use incentives known as tax abatements to woo industry and new development. *

September 30, 2022: NO BOND For Rivian In Georgia – Judge And Citizens Halt Project – The Georgia Record
* Through the combined efforts of an organization of local citizens based in Morgan, Newton, Jasper, and Walton counties, Georgia citizens have halted the plans of the Rivian Corporation, which has direct ties to China. Its financiers are currently facing securities fraud litgation. Though Governor Kemp and his associates with the regional Joint Development Authorities (JDAs) wanted citizens to believe the Rivian deal was sealed and have been telling property owners the state has “taken over the project,” citizens found it to be a bullying and distraction strategy. JDA proponents even went so far as to threaten eminent domain. *

September 29, 2022: Judge rules against Rivian: $15 billion in bonds denied – Morgan County Citizen
* A Morgan County judge has denied $15 billion in bonds for Rivian to finance the construction of a massive manufacturing plant, despite the project’s backing from top state and local officials. Morgan County Superior Court Judge Brenda Trammell issued the bombshell ruling on Thursday, Sept. 29, dealing several major blows to Rivian’s funding plans for the plant and historic incentive deal with the State of Georgia and the Joint Development Authority, the local four-county board overseeing Rivian’s development in Stanton Springs North. *

August 30, 2022: Morgan family accuses JDA of threatening condemnation to push land sale through for Rivian – Morgan County Citizen
* The Jenkins family is speaking out after finalizing a land sale to accommodate the Rivian project, alleging that the Joint Development Authority (JDA) pressured the family to sell with the threat of bringing in the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) to condemn their land if they refused. *

August 17, 2022: Why the bond that the JDA “must” issue will hurt local taxpayers – Morgan County Citizen
* Excellent article by guest columnist JoEllen Artz explaining phantom bonds and why the bonds are being requested on behalf of Rivian. *

August 15, 2022: Rivian Heads Toward Oblivion – MSN
* Rivian posted abysmal quarterly figures, which opens the door to anxiety that it will not survive, at least as a standalone public company. Another EV experiment may disappear fairly soon. Rivian’s financials were buried under a mountain of positive news about the company that included glowing stories from the media. It was not enough to veil Rivian’s very deep trouble. It expects to lose $5.45 billion for the calendar year. *

August 14, 2022: George Soros Deals a Big Blow to Tesla Rival Rivian – TheStreet
* In a regulatory document filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Aug. 12, the billionaire’s firm Soros Fund Management indicated that it sold millions of Rivian shares during the second quarter. *

August 10, 2022: Georgia lawmakers looking for transparency, accountability from development authorities – The Jones County News
* State Rep. Mary Margaret Oliver, who sponsored this year’s legislation, said more needs to be done. “Tax abatements deprive local governments and schools of the revenue they need to provide those services. There’s going to be robust discussion on tax abatements. I consider that a win. These deals need to be for the public good. It’s up to those affected by the taxes to be part of the conversation.” *

July 25, 2022: Two Morgan families file environmental lawsuit against Facebook plant in Stanton Springs – Morgan County Citizen
* “The dust storms arising from the ongoing construction of a second Facebook data center are in addition to a muddy mess that has resulted from the construction of the first data center. A Facebook subcontractor dumped truckload after truckload of red clay spoils from excavation for the data center. Those spoils were dumped on at least one property in the area, without appropriate permitting or erosion and sedimentation controls,” said Craig Pendergrast, one of the attorneys on the case. *

July 24, 2022: Union Carbide wants out of land deal for coastal spaceport – Georgia Recorder
* Opposition of the space port by Camden County residents is gaining momentum. Union Carbide Corporation claims that the company is no longer contractually bound to an option agreement after Camden voters overwhelmingly rejected the county’s purchase of 4,000 acres for the coastal Georgia rocket launch facility.
Congratulations Camden County Residents!! *

July 24, 2022: Court fights raise caution flags on green energy push in Nevada – Los Angeles Times
* “Everything seems to be in the hands of the mining company,” Sarah Wochele, a mining justice organizer for the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada, said at last month’s appeal hearing. “And we just ignorantly praise new technology, new technology.” *

July 22, 2022: Experts slam Pete Buttigieg’s comments on EVs: ‘A con job’ – Fox Business
* “Customers are clever enough to figure this out despite the snow job from the electric vehicle promoters and people like Secretary Buttigieg,” Myron Ebell, the director of the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s Center for Energy and Environment, told FOX Business in an interview. “It’s really kind of a con job,” Ebell said. “It may be a good deal for some people in some places under some circumstances. But by-and-large right now, it’s not a good deal.” *

July 20, 2022: Amazon Invests in Green Hydrogen Companies in the US And Europe – Mercom
* Hydrogen with renewable power is considered a more sustainable tool for industries to achieve the net-zero emission targets. *

February 7, 2022: Green New Deal or Stale Old Tax-Break Scam? Getting Electric Vehicle Incentives Right – Non Profit Quarterly
* The rapid rise of electric vehicles (EVs) is about to disrupt state economies and budgets, but the tax break-industrial complex is on cruise control. Governments are suddenly throwing billions in subsidies at new EV assembly and battery factories. Uncle Sam, as usual, is MIA on industrial policy, so the “economic war among the states” is in overdrive. *

July 12, 2022: Why Delivery Giants Walmart, Amazon, FedEx & UPS even Deal with Collapsing EV Startups: EV SPAC Canoo is the Latest – Wolf Street
* It appears the delivery giants Amazon, Walmart, UPS, and FedEx are using the startups to twist the arms of legacy van makers into finally producing EV vans. *

July 5, 2022: Rivian Inc., Gov. Kemp and the JDA: A good combination? – Morgan County Citizen
* “DEAR EDITOR: I write as a very concerned Morgan County landowner and taxpayer, and I have five generations of ancestors buried in Davis Cemetery” *

June 27, 2022: Opponents appeal Rivian’s tax deal to Morgan County Superior Court – Morgan County Citizen
* The 17-page complaint summary claims the usufruct model approved by the Morgan and Walton tax boards to sidestep property taxes for Rivian is illegitimate and violates Georgia’s state constitution *

>> Click here to view the petition that has been filed with Morgan County Superior Court <<

June 23, 2022: Rivian opponents challenge $700M in local tax breaks for EV maker – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
* Opponents of the planned $5 billion Rivian electric vehicle factory asked a judge this week to overturn a Morgan County board’s approval of a rental agreement with the company, alleging the deal violates the state constitution. *

June 20, 2022: Strong Demand For Rivian’s Electric Vehicles, Time To Buy? – Entrepreneur
* “…it could be wise to steer clear from the stock because its weak fundamentals are not in sync with its premium valuation” *

June 16, 2022: Rivian SUV Reservation Holders To Wait Longer For Deliveries: Report; Is RIVN Stock A Buy? – Investor’s Business Daily
* Rivian reported negative free cash flow of $1.452 billion in Q1/2022 and ended Q1 with $16.971 billion in cash and cash equivalents. The company will be bankrupt in less than 3 years if they can’t get the negative cash flow under control. Supply chain issues and time are not on their side. *

June 14, 2022: Elon Musk says that Lucid and Rivian are tracking toward bankruptcy – electrek.com
* Rivian lost $1.5 billion last quarter, and it has significant negative gross margins. If it keeps losing money on electric vehicles it sells and delivers, it will go bankrupt unless it can raise more money, which can be difficult without signs of the trajectory changing *

May 25, 2022: Rivian: Brass Ring or Trojan Horse? – Morgan County Citizen
* Opinion article from the Morgan County Citizen *

May 25, 2022: Morgan County signs off on Rivian tax deal; lawsuits threatened by Rivian opposition – Morgan County Citizen
* “It’s not as clear as the state is making it out to be,” said Christy. “I think all of these issues will eventually make their way to the Supreme Court at some point. The goal is to stop Rivian from coming here altogether. There is absolutely a legal fight coming.” *

May 15, 2022: Georgia Gov. Kemp, allies shield details of major Rivian deal from public view ahead of GOP primary – Just the News
* Critics accuse officials of keeping citizens out of the loop, using underhanded, backroom dealings. *

May 12, 2022: Rivian has been a train wreck since its IPO and an overall black eye for the EV industry – teslarati
* To say the Rivian story has been disappointing to us (and the Street) so far would be an understatement *

May 10, 2022: John Solomon blows the lid off disastrous Kemp-Rivian taxpayer boondoggle deals – rumble.com
* Interview with John Solomon on The John Fredericks Show *

May 9, 2022: In Ga. governor’s race, Perdue hits Kemp for $1.5B to Soros-tied Rivian; EV startup’s shares plunge – Just the News
* New questions surfaced about Kemp’s deal and Rivian’s economic viability on Monday, with the company stock price plunging 13% following reports that Ford will sell 8 million shares *

May 9, 2022: Rivian’s stock plunges on report that Ford is selling shares – CNN Business
* Rivian’s stock plunged 13% Monday as early investors jumped at their first opportunity to sell their shares — including, reportedly, Ford *

May 5, 2022: Rivian opponents hire second attorney – The Rockdale & Newton Citizen
* In addition to Environmental Law Specialist, Stack and Associates, Our Communities have expanded our legal team to include Litigation Specialist, John A. Christy with Scheeder, Wheeler, & Flint LLP *

May 3, 2022: Unproven EV Builder Rivian Receives the Largest Auto Subsidy Package in U.S. History – Good Jobs First
* Watchdog says a generation of Georgia residents will pay higher taxes and suffer under-resourced public services *

May 3, 2022: JDA accuses Morgan County tax official of conflict of interest in Rivian’s tax exemption deal, new meeting slated – Morgan County Citizen
* Please plan to attend -> The new meeting will be held on Thursday, May 12 at 9 a.m. on the second floor of the county administration building located at 150 E. Washington St. in Madison *

April 28, 2022: Amazon takes $7.6 billion loss on Rivian stake after EV company’s stock plunge – cnbc.com
* On Wednesday, Ford took a $5.4 billion loss on its 12% stake in Rivian. Amazon has a roughly 18% stake, according to FactSet, investing a total of more than $1.3 billion into the company. In its earnings report on Thursday, Amazon took a $7.6 billion loss on its stake in Rivian. *

April 29, 2022: Timeline: Rivian Timeline – Morgan County Citizen
* Timeline of events *

April 27, 2022: Morgan tax officials throw wrench in Rivian’s tax exemption deal; JDA accuses board of ‘illegal meeting’ – Morgan County Citizen
* JDA throws temper tantrum when things don’t go their way *

April 19, 2022: Residents slam state’s handling of Rivian project at public meeting – Atlanta Journal-Constitution
* The company has not filed applications for any environmental permits yet, state agency says *

Note: The article above is also available on the AJC FaceBook page – with comment’s enabled

April 18, 2022: Energy & Environment – Rivian opportunity at risk – AXIOS.com
* Rivian’s vehicles are also launching into the teeth of unprecedented, industrywide supply chain disruptions that could delay or derail the company’s ambitious growth plans *

April 18, 2022: Business – Rivian CEO R.J. Scaringe: ‘Frustrating’ buying parts to build electric vehicles – New York Post
* Chip suppliers are skeptical of the young electric vehicle company’s capability …. The suppliers are instead allocating more chips to established customers *

April 6, 2022: JDA OKs resolution to seek state funds for Rivian land purchase – The Covington News
* This meeting was held with little, if any, advance notice to the public *

April 6, 2022: Why save it? Just pave it – a conservation easement at risk in Morgan County – SaportaReport
* An old article but still relevant. The property referenced in this article is where the proposed Rivian factory will be constructed *

April 6, 2022: JDA AGREES TO FLOAT $42 BILLION IN “PHANTOM BONDS” FOR FACEBOOK DEAL – Taxpayer’s Watchdog Group
* Another old article. This one brings back memories of another deal put together by our four-county JDA *

April 4, 2022: Lawsuit alleges breach of contract on farmland for Rivian site – Morgan County Citizen
* Interesting new turn of events *

April 4, 2022: Outside The Beltway with John Fredericks – Interview with David Perude begins at 3:30 in the video. – americasvoice.news
* The interview includes a new Perdue campaign ad that addresses the Rivian issue *

April 1, 2022: Anti-Rivian group plans protest, prayer vigil about environmental concerns – The Covington News

April 1, 2022: Rivian Warns of Continuing Losses for the Foreseeable Future in a Filing With the SEC – autoevolution.com

Quote from the article above: “We have incurred net losses since our inception, including net losses of $0.4 billion, $1.0 billion, and $4.7 billion for the years ended December 31, 2019, 2020, and 2021, respectively,” Rivian said in the filing. “We believe that we will continue to incur operating and net losses in the future while we grow, including following our initial generation of revenues from the sale of our vehicles […]. We do not expect to be profitable for the foreseeable future […] and we cannot assure you that we will ever achieve or be able to maintain profitability in the future.”

March 31, 2022: Rivian opponents plan show of solidarity against massive assembly plant – The Rockdale & Newton Citizen.com

March 24, 2022: Capacity Underutilization Will Hurt Stock Price – seekingalpha.com

March 22, 2022: Alan Verner rises to forefront of Rivian controversy – Morgan County Citizen

March 21, 2022: Rivian faces sales setback after Senate bill to open Georgia market for EVs stalls – Morgan County Citizen

March 19, 2022: Rivian Factory in Georgia Faces Opposition Due to Environmental Concerns – autoevolution.com

March 14, 2022: How an Electric Truck Factory Became a Lightning Rod in Georgia – The New York Times

March 8, 2022: Rivian is sued for allegedly misleading investors about electric vehicle prices – Reuters

March 6, 2022: A plan to bring Rivian’s electric truck plant to Georgia is raising questions. Among them: What will it cost taxpayers? – 11Alive

Feb 28, 2022: The Jolt: David Perdue targets Gov. Brian Kemp’s prized Rivian deal – Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Feb 22, 2022: MB McCart: Follow-up on the Rivian Situation – State of GA Looks to Take Control – mbmccart.substack.com

Feb 20, 2022: MB McCart: First Piece on Rivian – Concerns abound regarding the “mega-site” – mbmccart.substack.com

Feb 14, 2022: Anti-Rivian movement on the rise; meeting draws over 500, raises $15K, attracts slew of political candidates running for state offices – Morgan County Citizen

Feb 7, 2022: New developer revives plans for Kingston subdivision on Lake Oconee near Buckhead that will bring 750 homes to Morgan County – Morgan County Citizen

Feb 7, 2022: Green Startups Stumble, Accelerating Selloff of Risky Stocks
Once-hot electric-car makers and battery suppliers face investigations and doubts about technology – The Wall Street Journal

Feb 4, 2022: Amazon holiday earnings blow away expectations (thanks to Rivian), stock spikes – MarketWatch

Feb 1, 2022: Riden promises answers on Rivian; von Hanstein decries police presence at county meetings – Morgan County Citizen

Feb 1, 2022: New regional impact report urges ‘caution’ on Rivian development, deems auto plant ‘inconsistent’ with Morgan County’s Comprehensive Plan – Morgan County Citizen<

Jan 31, 2022: JDA asks to postpone Walton rezone hearing; JDA, attorney for opposition group both ask for a delay – Walton Tribune.com

Jan 31, 2022: Rivian plant criticized for risks to environment, culture as market setbacks arise – SaportaReport

Jan 31, 2022: Rivian rezoning postponed in Walton County, Anti-Rivian group hires legal representation – Morgan County Citizen

Jan 28, 2022: Rivian opponents hire attorney, turn focus to Walton planning meeting -The Covington News

Jan 26, 2022: Clemons: Kemp’s silence on Rivian here spoke volumes – Walton Tribune.com

Jan 28, 2022: ‘We don’t want you:’ A resounding rejection of Rivian – Lake Oconee News

Jan 28, 2022: Rivian plant will hurt rural Georgia, opponents say – 11 Alive

Jan 28, 2022: Rivian’s battery partnership with Samsung falls apart over ‘unacceptable’ demands by the electric truck maker – NotebookCheck

Jan 28, 2022: Georgia Today Audio, Neighbors of proposed $5 billion Rivian plant say ‘Not in our backyard’ – Georgia Public Broadcasting

Jan 28, 2022: Georgia Today Text, Neighbors of proposed $5 billion Rivian plant say ‘Not in our backyard’ – Georgia Public Broadcasting

Jan 28, 2022: ‘We don’t want you:’ A resounding rejection of Rivian – Lake Oconee News

Jan 27, 2022: Rivian responds to environmental criticism from residents near site – The Covington News

Jan 25, 2022: “Rivian go away” Anti-Rivian demonstrators flood JDA meeting in protest of $5 billion plant – Morgan County Citizen

Jan 25, 2022: Residents give JDA members a piece of their mind at Joint Development Authority (JDA) meeting – Boxcast

Jan 25, 2022: Rutledge Anti-Rivian group raises $125,000 to begin legal challenge – Morgan County Citizen

Jan 23, 2022: Rivian resistance group to launch legal challenge, pledges public protests against historic deal – Morgan County Citizen

Jan 22, 2022: Rivian’s Georgia electric vehicle plant sparks fears among neighbors – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Nov 23, 2021: Four-county metro Atlanta area in spotlight again with Rivian plant – The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Nov 15, 2021: Expansion for Rivian approved by Normal [Illinois] Town Council – CI Proud

Aug. 31, 2021: Alan Verner retires after more than 20 years of service on the Joint Development Authority – Morgan County Citizen

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