Georgia County Government - October 2008 - (Page 77)

Feature DCA’s Planning and Quality Growth Office Reveals New Approach to Regional Planning By Adriane Wood, Regional Programs Unit Manager D C A’s Pla n n i ng a nd Q u a l it y Growth Office (PQG) has revealed a new approach to regional planning. In a recent presentation to the Department of Community Affairs Board, the PQG Regional Programs Unit highlighted plans that will provide local governments with an even more solid regional planning process. Regional planning is an aspect of land use planning that deals with the efficient placement of land use activities, infrastructure and settlement growth across a significantly larger area of land than an individual city or town. One community may not have adequate resources to completely address an issue, be it green space, water and sewer infrastructure, educational needs, or resource sharing, but several communities in the same region may benefit from a collective solution. Particularly in the case of shared resources such as water or green space, a regional approach enables economies of scale in shared solutions. “Regions are regarded as something in between city and state, something that exists relative to existing structures and institutions,” said Jim Frederick, Office Director, Planning and Quality Growth. “There seems to be more confidence among local leaders about strengthening regions and regarding them as evolving places. This all pointed to our decision to develop a new approach to regional planning.” In essence, PQG staff strives to provide a Regional Work Program that will yield results – results that can make a region a better or more effective place. Effective FY09, the new approach will include the following components: Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) offers local governments options for reconciling differences on planning or growth management issues between neighboring jurisdictions. ADR includes the following options: • Facilitation • Mediation • Arbitration Regionally Important Resources are those valuable natural and cultural resources that should be identified and protected. To do this, RDCs will develop Regional Resource plans that involve stakeholders in a comprehensive effort to identify these important resources in the region. Regional Resource Plans will include the following components: • Regionally Important Resource Map showing a regional green space network. • Guidance for Appropriate Development Practices that should be utilized in developments to be located near RIRs. • General Policies and Protection Measures to be utilized by local governments in making decisions that affect RIRs. Developments of Regional Impact are those new developments within a community that have the potential to impact, positively or negatively, on the resources of a neighboring jurisdiction, affecting such things as transportation systems, or water quantity and quality, or delivery of services to the populace. These developments must be of sufficient size to exceed thresholds established for both metropolitan and non-metropolitan parts of the state. The proposed new DRI rules are generating comments and feedback via the DCA website and stakeholders’ meetings. When they take effect in July 2009, the DRI program will emphasize streamlining the review process for quality growth developments. Regional Planning An entirely new process for regional plans, produced by Regional Development Centers, is being developed and will take effect July 1, 2009, also. The new approach is modeled on Georgia’s Local Planning Requirements, with such similar components as: • Regional Assessment, which includes a Projected Development Patterns Map, with Conservation category matching RIR map; • Stakeholder Involvement Program; and • Regional Agenda, which includes: • Regional Vision • Implementation Program; Guiding Principles; Performance Standards • Evaluation and Monitoring activities Moreover, Regional Plans will be supplemented by innovative State Planning Recommendations. Completed Regional Agendas and Regional Resource Plans must be actively publicized by the RDC in an effort to coordinate all local, state and regional activities to achieve the desired regional development patterns. Coordination with local governments, other important regional stakeholders (developers, chambers of commerce, environmental protection groups, etc.), and state agencies will help insure successful implementation of a regional plan to the benefit of all. “Whether it is educating citizenry, providing training and technical assistance for decision makers, or deliberately advancing the thinking of all, improving the quality of life in the state of Georgia is of primary concern,” Frederick said. ■ Adriane Wood serves as Regional Programs Unit Manager. For more information on Regional Programs call 404-679-5279 or log on to Programs. OCTOBER 2008 77 http://

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Georgia County Government - October 2008

Georgia County Government - October 2008
President's Message
County Matters
South Georgia's Agricultural Heartland Welcomes Economic Diversity, High-Tech Research
What Do You Know About the State's 2008 Constitutional Amendments?
Union County's New Hope Clinic
Counties and the Law: U.S. Supreme Court Increases Burden on Defending Age Claims
Cyber Security Awareness
Are Animal Control Costs Out of Control?
Dave Wills Joins ACCG Staff
Executive DRIVE is the Pinnacle of Gwinnett's Leadership Institute
Preventative Medical Program Succeeds in Chatham County
DCA's Planning & Quality Growth Office Reveals New Regional Planning Approach
Implementation of Georgia's Security & Immigration Compliance Act
The Roundabout: Glynn County's Newest Approach to Traffic Management
Governor Urges Preparation for Digital TV Transition
The Institute for Georgia Environmental Leadership
Wharton Named Program Director for Georgia Centers for Innovation
Army Ranger Turned Police Officer Attends CDP Training
ACCG Staff Attends National Conference of State Legislatures Summit
ACCG Editor, Forsyth County PIO Garner NACIO Awards
GDEcD News: Tourism Grants; Scan-Tech to Expand
Benefit News: GEBCorp Marks Eight Years of Retirement Benefits
Georgia's Courthouses and the American Renaissance
Extension News: Georgia 4-H Impacts Student Achievement, Leadership
Research Center: Best Methods for Creating Ordinances in Your County
CCAP Corner: Walter F. Rosso, Cusseta-Chattahoochee County
NACo News: Association Sponsors 'Green' Competitions
Beth Bradley Joins ACCG Staff
County Parade
Index of Advertising

Georgia County Government - October 2008