Our county is an extremely fast-growing county in the northern rockies... lots of young professionals moving in, lots of retired folks moving in, lots of construction workers moving in, etc... Its a classic case of a rural county making the transition from rural backwater to a relatively hip place.
One of the big issues is that there is still a very large, and aging, contingent of farmers and ranchers. These folks have seen many attempts at decent planning fail, and they've seen a lot of environmental groups, with good intentions, try and guide the process. In short, they don't trust the city-folk, the enviros, the planners, etc..
What we're trying to do is try and institute some type of rural land use center that would try and help some of these folks with options for developing (or conserving) their land, in a responsible way that works for the county at large, when the time comes for them to retire. The process itself tends to overwhelm and intimidate a lot of these folks, and they aren't the type that want to go out and hire expensive professionals to help with sensitive design, with financial backing, or whatever. They want to draw lines on a map with the cheapest surveyor they can find and get the heck out of the courthouse. We'd like to give them options and ideas.
Any thoughts or examples of places that have done this? I know that a few counties in colorado have attempted a version of this, as has Grand Traverse Bay and Center for Rural Massachussetts. Any other places out there that are experimenting with this? Any thoughts?