Community and Development Services (Department 285)

Greg Thompson, CDS Director

Description and Mission

The Community and Development Services (CDS) team administers and guides the development, zoning, planning, and code enforcement functions for the County through the use of the Zoning and Subdivision Regulations, as well as the Comprehensive Plan. CDS is also charged with providing updates and amendments as needed to these same documents. Customer service to residents, the Board of County Commissioners, Planning Commission, the development community, referral agencies, builders, and property owners is a central function of the department.

Accomplishments, Goals, and Objectives

Accomplishments 2022:

The Department experienced approximately 75% turn-over in 2022, bringing on two new planners and the departure of both a Planning Tech and Admin. To support operations during periods of vacancy, a contract planning firm was used and will continue to be retained to provide surge capacity as needed.

The major regulatory work completed a total re-writing of the Counties 1041 (Matters of State Interest) Regulations with a focus on providing clear county standards for assessing applications related to power transmission, and solar and wind energy production, long with establishing guidance for service by water and sanitation districts to two or more separate sub-divisions. This process provided the opportunity to take substantial, and sometimes conflicting, input for our citizens and develop something most could support.

Changes to the Zoning Regulations included replacing a "Concept Plan" process with "Concept Briefing" in a manner that ensures broad public awareness of proposed development.

Goals and Objectives 2023:

Several large projects in the northwestern part of the county will likely proceed through the planning process. Though most are in the pre-application / conceptual phase, the scale of several of these projects if they do come to fruition would have significant impact on the county as a whole and very detailed analysis is required. Regulatory changes anticipated include addressing zoning issues in our unincorporated towns. Refinement of the Housing Master Plan informed by the County's 2022 Housing Needs Assessment, and development of a Water Master Plan to support the County's Comprehensive Plan are also anticipated.

Department Budget Summary