Dane County Plan for Future Growth Completed More Than Two Years Ahead of State Deadline

December 30, 2009
Topf Wells, 266-9069
County Executive

January 1st, 2010 is State Deadline to Adopt “Smart Growth” Plan Ten years ago in 2000, the Wisconsin State Legislature passed a ground-breaking law requiring all counties, villages, cities and towns to adopt a comprehensive plan often referred to as “smart growth” for their communities by this coming January 1st . Dane County complied with the state requirement two years early when the County Board unanimously adopted its comprehensive plan and the County Executive signed into law in October of 2007. The law requires that land use decisions be consistent with the adopted plan. According to the state Department of Administration’s latest count in August, 28 counties have approved plans, 41 counties are in the process of adopting, 1 county was in the preliminary planning stage and 2 counties were not planning. “Our thriving communities, unparalleled agricultural and natural resources, and high quality of life enjoyed by our residents is the result of our county-wide commitment to planning our roadmap to the future,“ said Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk. “Our cooperative planning effort by all communities promotes economic development, protects resources and is proactive rather than reactive.” The Dane County Comprehensive Plan was the result of thousands of hours of citizen volunteered time in over 100 meetings that developed a plan that is comprised of nine required elements, including transportation, housing, utilities, agriculture and natural resources, economic development, intergovernmental cooperation, and land use. As the fastest growing county in the state adding 60,000 people every decade, the plan will guide Dane County decisions that will shape how the county looks when nearly a quarter of a million more people will call Dane County home by the year 2050. "Dane County has added the equivalent a city of nearly 70,000 people since 2000, so our growth needs to be smarter than everywhere else in Wisconsin," said Supervisor Kyle Richmond, Environment, Agriculture & Natural Resources Committee chair. "Our comprehensive plan is not only work to be proud of, but also a guide to protecting the public interest." ###
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