What the Heck is the Land Use Academy?

Participants at the Land Use Academy's Basic Training this past fall.
Participants at the Land Use Academy’s Basic Training this past fall.

As a local land use commissioner you are faced with making decisions about how your community will grow, reviewing and approving applications for a variety of projects and balancing growth with natural resource protection. Sometimes court decisions change the rules, you receive conflicting advice, the information you have to work with is incomplete or you have to decide on a neighbor’s application. It can be a complex and confusing job. That’s where the Land Use Academy can help.

The Land Use Academy provides practical education for local land use decision makers in Connecticut. Our program offers both basic and advanced training and focuses on the fundamental knowledge and skills needed to serve effectively on a local land use commission. New land use commissioners and those considering becoming commissioners will find our courses especially useful, as will current commissioners seeking to update or refresh their understanding of fundamental land use topics.

Our principal program consists of a core curriculum of three courses offered as a day-long training, usually held on Saturdays. Members of the Planning and Zoning section of the Connecticut Bar Association provide instruction for on such topics as Legal Responsibilities for Connecticut Land Use Commissioners, Conflicts Bias and Pre-determination, Running the Meeting and Making the Decision, and Conditions and Modifications.

The Academy collaborates with other CLEAR programs on various projects in an effort to create the most useful tools and resources for municipal officials. We are constantly updating the course curriculum to reflect recent court decisions and new developments at the state level. For instance, the Academy and NEMO have teamed up to develop a site plan review workshop that focuses on stormwater systems.

The next training will be the basic training to be held February 9, 2013 at the Northeastern Connecticut Council of Governments office, 125 Putnam Pike, Dayville, CT. Visit the Land Use Academy website for details, call Bruce Hyde 860-345-5229 or just get down to it and REGISTER NOW!