MPCA Seeks Creative Session Proposals for 37th Annual Conference


(November 9-10, Westminster)

MPCA Corner

The MPCA will host the 2020 fall conference at the Best Western in Westminster on November 9-10. The theme of this year’s conference is Contingency Planning and Resilient Boards. As we all feel our way through the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for proactive planning, and the benefits of a resilient citizen planning board to a community, are more apparent than ever. The MPCA is closely monitoring the pandemic and will adjust the fall conference as necessary.

Building on the Planning Commissioner Training Course and Open Meetings Act training session the MPCA holds on the first day of the conference, the MPCA, in partnership with the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning), is requesting session proposals for the conference by May 28.

Sessions should focus on the work of citizen planners, but can incorporate the work of professional planners, other officials and stakeholders, and residents. The conference audience is primarily composed of planning commissioners, boards of zoning appeals members, and historic district commissioners, but also includes staff members from Maryland jurisdictions. The MPCA encourages submissions that creatively address the conference theme.

Submitting Your Proposal

For your topic or session to be considered, please email the following information to Joe Griffiths at joseph.griffiths@maryland.gov no later than 5:00 pm on May 28:

Proposal Elements

No more than 200 words, and should include:

  1. Topic and session name and how the proposal relates to the 2020 MPCA Conference theme, “Contingency Planning and Resilient Boards.”
  2. Brief abstract of information to be covered
  3. How the session will inform and elevate citizen planners’ knowledge of the subject matter
  4. Suggested speakers (no more than five)
    • Include name, title, and contact information (if available, can be general category of speaker, such as “municipal planning commissioner”)
    • Indicate session leader
    • Others as needed
  5. Session length (45 mins or 1.5 hours) requested
  6. Session style (e.g., panel of experts, presentation, Q&A)

Evaluation Criteria

  • Inclusion of all elements 1-6 above
  • Applicability to theme
  • Approach to citizen planning
  • Extra consideration will be given to proposals that include at least one planning board member on the panel
  • Bonus: Session’s applicability to the Westminster/Carroll County region

The MPCA anticipates selecting session proposals by June 18

See last year’s session presentations at the 2019 Conference page

Project Goals and Scope of Services

Submissions should formulate a presentation team (one or more persons), an applicable topic to enhance and expand upon this year’s theme: Contingency Planning and Resilient Boards, a visual presentation or physical take away, and facilitate a session of either 45 mins or 1.5 hours.

If you believe your session topic could be eligible for CM credits, MPCA and Planning staff can work with you on your proposal and make it credit eligible.

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