David Jenkins and Carolyn McHugh attended the June 20 Focus Group, a part of the MPCA Outreach Project.

The Maryland Planning Commissioners Association’s (MPCA) Outreach project is off to a hot start this summer. With two focus group meetings in the books and five to go, members of Maryland’s planning community are embracing the effort and expressing their opinions. The MPCA hosted the first meeting in Calvert County and the local press took notice.

“We are here to listen,” said Robert Reed, a long-term member of Calvert County’s planning commission and president of the state planning commissioners association that is behind the outreach project.

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The meeting in North Beach included local Planning Commissioners, planning staff, and even a representative of the Southern Maryland Association of Realtors. This diversity of voices strengthens the project, and the MPCA encourages anyone interested in planning in Maryland to participate. Your input will help the MPCA improve its services and better assist both professional and citizen planners. With five regional meetings left to go and an online survey available on the project website, there is no reason to stay on the sidelines.

“Planners at the meeting said that when residents, developers and public officials disagree on certain projects, they are often the ones stuck in the middle. That is something maybe planners could get some help from the state planning commissioners association, said Patricia Haddon, principal planner of Calvert County’s community planning and building.”

The MPCA invites you to participate in one of the upcoming outreach focus group meetings.

Wednesday July 12: Lower Eastern Shore Regional Office of the Maryland Department of Planning, 201 Baptist St, Suite 24, Salisbury

Tuesday July 18: Allegany College Continuing Education Building, 12401 Willowbrook Rd, Cumberland

Wednesday, July 26: Baltimore County Center for Maryland Agriculture, 1114 Shawan Rd, Cockeysville

Tuesday, August 1: Montgomery County Planning, 8787 Georgia Ave, Silver Spring

Tuesday, August 8: Queen Anne’s County Planning and Zoning, 110 Vincit St, Centreville

RSVPs are appreciated, but not required, and can be made at the website.

If you have any questions about this project, please contact Joe Griffiths at 410-767-4553 or at joseph.griffiths@maryland.gov