Can I reference a government PDF map?

I want to trace over this map Specifically I want to trace the blue outline of Buck Shoals Wildlife Management Area. This PDF map is provided on by the Georgia Department of Economic Development.

The OSM wiki “What images and maps may I use to make maps from?” mentions that we shouldn’t use copyrighted maps. This PDF doesn’t state that it’s copyrighted, and their website copyright Legal | Privacy Policy | Copyright | Georgia Department of Economic Development only prohibits very specific things (logos, images, and editorial text).

Is it okay to trace and submit this to OSM?

It’s probably best to get in contact with the org that made it to ensure it has an unencumbered license. Looking around a few things at the GA GIS data portal, it doesn’t seem like things are Public Domain… the more common license seems to be CC BY 4.0 (example) which isn’t compatible with the OSM license without a waiver from the originating org.

In the US this varies state by state. In California any work by a governmental entity is public domain. In some states, all rights are reserved. I don’t know the situation in the State of Georgia but perhaps someone here may know. Or you can look into the legislation and court cases that determine this. Do you have a friend who is a lawyer with knowledge of IP laws?

At the least, you could reach out to the agency that published the PDF and get a written opinion from them.