Smart Growth for Vernon, CT
PZC to hear schedule for preparing Conservation and Development Plan

By Max Bakke
Journal Inquirer
Published: Thursday, January 22, 2009 12:08 PM EST

VERNON — The Planning and Zoning Commission has drafted a preliminary outline for establishing the town’s new Plan of Conservation and Development.

Town Planner Len Tundermann and commission member Walter Mealy described the schedule to the Town Council on Tuesday and will discuss the timeline with commission members during their meeting tonight.

“It’s the plan for the plan,” Mealy told the council.

State statutes require that a Plan of Conservation and Development be drafted at least once every 10 years and that the document serve as the guideline for the town’s physical character, officials said.

The last plan was drafted in 2001, which means officials will spend the next two years developing the document.

The PZC is scheduled to meet at 7:30 in Town Hall at 14 Park Place.

While the plan is in its earliest stages, officials expect that a final draft could be completed in late 2010. The commission is scheduled to go out to bid to hire a land use consultant to facilitate the document’s creation. The consultant is expected to cost in excess of $100,000, with much of the money already set aside from previous budgets.

Tundermann said he expects this plan will be more complete than what was previously drafted in 2001.

It’s expected to contain implementation strategies that give practical recommendations for how to achieve the town’s developmental goals — something that was absent in the current plan.

“A plan without implementation strategies becomes a really nice paperweight,” he said.

The document’s creation will go through a lengthy process that includes soliciting residents’ input before receiving final town approval.

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