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Empty policies and unused documents...

nerudite

Cyburbian
Messages
6,544
Points
30
I'm sitting here reviewing proposed outline for an "implementation plan" for a totally innane and unused document, and I'm starting to wonder why I am actually spending valuable time/resources on something that nobody is using.

A few years ago (before I arrived) my city got into a little cat fight with the neighboring county regarding their proposed Municipal Development Plan (similar to a General Plan/Comprehensive Plan). The cat fight went to the Province, which remanded the issue back to the local level and told us all to get together and figure out a process to play nice.

After several meetings over the period of at least a year, the "Process for Resolving Intermunicipal Planning Issues" was created, adopted, and forgotten. So now a meeting has been called to put together this implementation plan. Despite the fact that administration is aware of this document, it hasn't cut down on the squabbling (mostly between the mayor and reeve).

Sometimes it just seems so futile to be working toward partnerships between agencies when our elected officials narrowly support the concept and definitely don't practice it.

Sorry for the rant... my frustration is running high today. I'm sure all of you have been in the same situtation...
 

BKM

Cyburbian
Messages
6,464
Points
29
What's worse: I spent a couple hours this morning writing a lengthy memo defending our General Plan Housing Element from a poor rating in a report published by "The Greenbelt Alliance."

Now, the Greenbelt Alliance Report appears to be poorly researched, misses information actually contained in the Housing Element, includes conclusions and criteria biased against exurban cities, and was prepared by staff who never bothered to talk with us (because we were futher along in our Housing Element process than the next town up the freeway, where they met with staff three or four times!!).

They have been meeting with our Council members, hence the memo. Two hours on a memo to debate a poorly prepared report by an activist group with limited credibility to defend a document that is itself somewhat vague and by the book (written to meet State law). THAT, is a productive morning (and a boring one-thus my long postings on this forum :) )
 

Jeff

Cyburbian
Messages
4,161
Points
27
You really wouldn't like it in PA. Most "Plans" or "Studies" simply collect dust on a shelf somewhere.
 

nerudite

Cyburbian
Messages
6,544
Points
30
I was just commiserating with my boss (he's a very cool director)... and depending on how my meeting regarding this issue goes tomorrow, I may be able to bag the project. It's nice that when something is obviously this futile that at least I have support from above to just move on to something that will actually do the City some good. Yay!
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
Funny, I just saw a copy of the 1966 plan for the city. I reviewed the section on the Central Business District. "Redevelop this area for apartments." "Create a cluster of commercial uses on the east end of downtown." Improve parking and transportation, ....

And how much of that has been accomplished (much repeated in the 1988 Downtown Revitalization Report, the 1998 Central Area Plan, and the 1988 Redevelopment Area Guidelines? Yeah, they've been talking about the same things since before I was born. At least there is a consistent vision.
 

mike gurnee

Cyburbian
Messages
3,066
Points
30
I believe most places have a consistent vision. I just reviewed ALL of our previous plans, and it amazes me how much actually has been accomplished. IMO, it gets out of whack when you revise the plan too often...and have consultants try to out-do each other. KS has a statutory mandate to update plans annually. This is way to frequent unless there are significant changes. I favor every 5-7 years. (especially in-house efforts with a staff of one).
 

Mud Princess

Cyburbian
Messages
4,896
Points
27
Updating 5 years makes sense to me, unless the community is growing by leaps and bounds (well, the plan should be dealing with the growth issue to begin with).

At least your state HAS a mandate. Many communities in my area haven't updated their comprehensive plans in 10, 20, even 30 years. There is no vision to guide development, only zoning codes...
 
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