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Planning Commission polishes proposal

by DANIEL RADFORD
Staff Writer | September 9, 2022 1:00 AM

SANDPOINT — The Planning Commission met Tuesday to revise proposed updates to the county’s Comprehensive Plan.

Following last week’s meeting, Commissioner Dave Frankenbach volunteered to polish the document, which had been edited and revised many times and in some parts had become difficult to follow.

There were a few material changes that had been agreed to at the Aug. 30 meeting as well as two material revisions by Frankenbach to the transportation section. Most edits, however, were for the sake of clarity and readability.

The population chapter received a new objective to maintain county population projections and use them to inform land use decisions. Similar language was added to the policies of the school facilities and transportation chapter.

The economic development chapter received a new objective to “[e]ncourage clustered development for medium and large scale commercial and industrial uses.” This chapter’s policies were also amended to encourage workforce housing in proximity to the workplace.

The hazardous area chapter saw two additional goals. The first aims to prevent loss of life and property due to a natural disaster while the second seeks to mitigate public and private financial losses.

Stronger language was added to an objective in the public services, facilities, and utilities chapter. While the county had only intended for developers to share the cost of additional county services should they need to be expanded to their development, the latest version of that objective seeks to “[r]equire the developers to provide infrastructure, utilities or financial support to offset the capital costs of expansion of services required by the proposed development.”

In the transportation chapter Frankenbach added an objective to deepen interjurisdictional communication throughout the county in order “to ensure the best possible flow of traffic county-wide.”

He also added a new policy directing the county to develop a future-oriented “transportation system plan” to ensure adequate maintenance and to identify needs for road extensions or transportation corridors as needed.

The goal for the recreation chapter was revised to reflect the importance of recreation as an “asset that supports a key segment of the county’s economy.”

In the housing chapter, the goal was amended to “provide an environment that enables opportunities for diverse housing needs.”

In the community design chapter, the objectives were amended in an effort to minimize impacts of new development on adjacent areas and a policy was revised to allow “unique and flexible design standards” for new developments in historical areas for the sake of compatibility with unique and older developments.

In addition to the substantive changes, there were many grammatical, wording, and other cosmetic revisions to the Aug. 30 updates that were elaborated to the Planning Commission on Sept. 6. These edits would be too numerous to present here.

However, to explore the latest proposed updates to the current goals, objectives, and policies of the Bonner County Comprehensive Plan, go to BonnerCountyID.org and search “AM0012-22.”

INFO: The Planning Commission will discuss updating the goals, objectives, and policies Sept. 20 at 4:30 p.m. at the County Administration Building 1500 U.S. 2, Sandpoint.

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