Comprehensive Plan 2017

A Comprehensive Plan is a large (150 pages or so), in-depth document that municipalities publish for a few different reasons.  Primarily, it is a plan for the future of a Town--  where the residents envision their community five, ten, or twenty years down the line.  It takes into account current and past trends, the history of the community, and what its residents want to see changed or set in stone.  The plan shows what the community wants; Town officials need to know this information in order to do their jobs the best way possible.  A Town's best work is the work that addresses real problems identified by real townspeople, and a Comprehensive Plan can provide a great reference point for that.  Without it, the Town might be embarking upon projects that don't have community buy-in and serve minimal public interest.  And that's a natural segue to the other reason why Towns publish comprehensive plans: to get funding that carries large projects to fruition.  Many state and federal grant programs now require an up-to-date version of these plans before a Town is even considered eligible to apply.  It is these grant programs that have allowed Stonington to do the Hagan Dock project, the Moose Island Causeway, the many updates to Colwell Ramp, and so-on and so-forth.  Without a Comprehensive Plan, Stonington would no longer be able to embark upon projects of this scale.  To this end, Bob Gerber has been hired by the Town to aid us with the writing and composition of a new Comprehensive Plan.  He is a native Mainer with a bachelors degree from MIT and a masters from Stanford, and helped Stonington successfully appeal the FEMA flood maps a few years ago.

The Comprehensive Plan committee meets Thursdays, from 1:30 to 4:00 on the ground floor of the Town Hall.  The general public is encouraged to attend these meetings and voice their input on the section dealt with each week.  The Beginning with Habitat disc, replete with "habitat data layers" of water resources, plant and animal habitats, conserved lands, and many more state data sets compiled by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife, is available at the Stonington Town Hall for public viewing.  We recommend you bring a computer with ArcGIS software to get the most out of the disc.

Here is the current working draft of the Plan on Google Drive-- it's quite a large file and may take a bit to download. You will need a Google account for this to work, which you can create by following the instructions hereHere is a survey that we encourage members of the public to take, as your answers will help us create the Plan and focus on what matters.

 Here are some important links: 

Maine Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) erosion and sediment control measures.

Maine Forest Services best management practices for forestry.

The DEP manual on best management practices for gravel road maintenance.

Maine Department of Agriculture best management practices for agriculture.

Schedule
 Topic
 Meeting Date
 Information Needed
Vision (minutes)  June 15th  Past vision statement, spreadsheet plan, shoreland zoning map
Historical (minutes)  June 22nd  State data set, MHPC data, historical summary
Water resources (minutes)  June 29th  Town road crew guidelines, WHPA plan, point source map
Natural resources (minutes)  July 6th  BwH data set, assessor database
Agriculture and forest (minutes)  July 13th  State data set, assessor database
Marine resources (minutes)  July 20th  Map of land use, map of shoreline access, state map of scenic resource
Population and demographics (minutes)  July 27th  State dataset, cubit data, school projections, assessor record
Recreation (minutes)  August 3rd  Previous comprehensive plan work on home industries, state sales tax data, state data set
Transportation (minutes)  August 10th  State data set, assessor record
Public facilities and services (minutes)  August 17th  Map of recreation facilities, state data set
Existing land use (minutes)  August 24th  Map of public parking areas, state dataset, map of sidewalks, road maintenance budgets
Housing (minutes)  August 31st  State data set, map of sewer and water service areas, map of public facilites
Economy (minutes)  September 7th  Assessor data set
Future land use plan (minutes)  September 14th  Last ten years of town reports, existing land use maps, BwH imp area map
Fiscal capacity and capital investment  September 21st  State data set