Reblog: A Better Maryland Kicks off with Listening Sessions in Garrett County

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Planning Assistance in Action

Outreach for A Better Maryland kicked off with enthusiasm in Garrett County on Monday, November 6. Special Secretary of Smart Growth Wendi Peters, Acting Secretary of the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) Rob McCord, Assistant Secretary of Planning Services Pat Keller, and Director of Planning Coordination Chuck Boyd, who is also the Project Manager for A Better Maryland, visited local county and municipal community leaders in the county government offices in Oakland and at Garrett College. Visit A Better Maryland blog for full article… More

Join the Maryland Department of Planning in Developing A Better Maryland

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Planning Assistance in Action

The Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) wants to hear from you about the new State Development Plan, A Better Maryland. When we say “you,” we mean “you.” In a series of 24 Listening Session events (local staff, elected officials, and the public) in every Maryland County and Baltimore City over the winter and early spring of 2017-18, Planning will be coming to your area. We encourage everyone interested in fostering good planning, enhancing our quality of life, ensuring responsible growth, and protecting our resources to join us for a statewide dialogue. More

Land Preservation Pre-recertification: Autumn is the Time

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Planning Assistance in Action

October is time for more than dressed up ghouls and sacks of sugary sweets. This October, 12 of the 16 counties whose land preservation programs are certified by The Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) and the Maryland Agricultural Land Preservation Foundation (MALPF) will be applying for recertification (Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Calvert, Caroline, Carroll, Cecil, Frederick, Kent, Montgomery, Queen Anne’s, St. Mary’s, and Worcester). Certified counties benefit by retaining 75% rather than 33% of locally generated agricultural land transfer tax, which must be used for land preservation. More

The Maryland Department of Planning Maps Land Use for the Town of Williamsport in Washington County

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Land Use Map for the Town of Williamsport, MD

Planning Assistance in Action

Maps can communicate ideas instantaneously. Metes and bounds on the other hand, while necessary as a legal recording of property, read like a foreign language to the uninitiated. Points beginning here or there, and then north for a certain number of degrees, and west for some more, etc. etc. Good for the surveyors, but what about the rest of us? Planners understand this, and many cultivate a love of maps at a young age. Residents and local officials, who know their communities better than anyone else, can still learn a significant amount of new information, or recognize unnoticed patterns in their urban makeup, by analyzing a well-made map. Mapping software, in the form of Geographic Information Systems, better known as GIS, is more powerful than ever. However, it is also pricey and inaccessible for many smaller communities. This is one area in which the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) can help, and did so in collaborating with the Town of Williamsport in Washington County. More

The Maryland Departments of Planning and Natural Resources Team up with Salisbury University to Implement Local Solutions and Initiate Careers

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Planning Assistance in Action

Hunter Phillips at work in Planning’s Lower Shore Regional Office

Planning is a social endeavor. Public hearings, outreach meetings, charrettes, surveys, and comprehensive plans all seek to engage with and communicate the shared vision of the largest number of stakeholders as possible. Planning is collaborative. One government agency or one team of consultant experts alone cannot possibly determine the best course of development for a neighborhood. Rather, the interdisciplinary approach yields the best results. But who is going to organize the charrettes? Who is going to manage that large interagency project or design the maps needed for a public hearing? There is a place for the individual in the planning community, and the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) strives to nurture those interested in establishing and advancing their careers in the field. More

The Maryland Department of Planning Helps with Public School Funding

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Planning Assistance in Action

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With a typical annual state allocation of $300 million toward school construction to be distributed to 24 Local Education Agencies (LEA) across the state, the Interagency Committee for School Construction (IAC), which manages the Public School Construction Program (PSCP), has a lot of work to do. The PSCP was established in 1971 to ensure the equitable physical condition of school facilities across Maryland and coordinate state school construction funding. More

Article: Planning working with Statewide Planning Commissioners to Reinvent an Effective Association

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In a July 17th article in Maryland Matters, the Maryland Planning Commissioners Association’s (MPCA) Outreach Project was highlighted. This project is an effort to listen to stakeholders so that Maryland’s planning community can best meet the needs of local jurisdictions. The MPCA is a statewide, nonprofit educational organization of municipal, county and regional planning commissioners and boards of zoning appeals members.

MPCA members work to improve the quality of life for all Marylanders through planning, environmental protection, historic preservation, and growth management. More

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