Planning commission designated as 'regional'

By Julie Fann
Star Staff
jfann@starhq.com

  
Director of Planning and Development David Ornduff told the Elizabethton City Planning Commission on Tuesday that Nashville has approved the designation of the city commission as a regional commission to encompass the city's Urban Growth Area. "We're very proud of this and, hopefully, people will see the benefits of it over time," he said.
   The city of Elizabethton, in an effort to anticipate needs and expansion capabilities over the next 15-20 years, has extended its boundaries to include a wider area so that, as growth occurs, the city can provide services to citizens. According to local officials, this will allow the city to pool resources and cut down on costs.
   Public Chapter 1101 of the Tennessee Code provides flexibility so that local governments can tailor their growth plans to suit the unique character of the area. Urban Growth Boundaries include:
   * Territory that is reasonably compact yet sufficiently large to accommodate residential and nonresidential growth projected to occur over the next 20 years.
   * Territory that surrounds the existing boundaries of the city.
   * Territory that can be projected as a likely site of high density industrial or commercial use over the next 20 years.
   The commission also discussed the recently annexed west end of Carter county. Ornduff explained that workers are in the final stages of conducting a census of the area, which extends along the Milligan Highway. He said the census is important in determining the amount of school-aged children who will be attending city schools and also necessary for submitting a request for state-shared revenue.
   The city has mailed self-addressed stamped envelopes to residents that need to be returned before May 15. After all surveys are received, the city will forward a request for state-shared revenue to Nashville. If approved, the city is eligible to receive approximately $84 per person.