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Details on State Strategic Plan Begin to Emerge

December 8th, 2011 by

Road show to begin in late January.

At its Dec. 7 meeting, state planning commissioners got a sense of their evening schedules in late January/early February, which is when six public hearings will be held on the State Strategic Plan.  The hearings are mandated by statute to precede adoption of the plan by the State Planning Commission.  Exact dates and locations will be announced in mid-December.  The public will also be allowed to submit written comments.  Final adoption of the plan is expected in March.  The hope is that some of the commission’s empty seats for members of the public and of local government will be filled by then, so new members can participate in these public hearings.

Gerry Scharfenberger, Office of Planning Advocacy (OPA) director, announced that the plans’ biggest missing piece—the locational criteria for Priority Growth Areas and Priority Preservation Areas—will emerge shortly. 

The detailed work to finalize and operationalize the plan is under way. Gerry Scharfenberger, Office of Planning Advocacy (OPA) director, announced that the plans’ biggest missing piece—the locational criteria for Priority Growth Areas and Priority Preservation Areas—will emerge shortly.  Over the next month staff will develop a  “pre-proposal” for the criteria, with input from a peer advisory group.  The pre-proposal will be presented at the SPC’s January meeting, and be available for comment prior to the public hearings.  This is welcome news for New Jersey Future and other stakeholders who have been pushing for more details on the locational criteria. 

The first meeting of the State Strategic Plan Steering Committee (the group of state agencies charged with implementing the plan) will be Dec. 15.  According to OPA deputy director Dan Kennedy, this is when state agencies will get their marching orders for aligning their activities with the plan and developing their own strategic plans, which are expected to be completed in the summer. 

OPA staff is also researching criteria for a “scorecard” that will be used to direct discretionary spending for local governments, and developing metrics to measure progress towards the Garden State Values detailed in the plan.  


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