The town is beginning the process for developing an update to its Open Space & Recreation Plan. An advisory committee is needed to help guide staff and consultants on this planning effort. This committee is to include representatives of several standing committees. The public is also encouraged to apply. Interested committee members will be interviewed and appointed by the Selectboard. To apply, click here.
Open Space & Recreation Plan Update Advisory Committee
Purpose/Responsibility: Updating the Open Space & Recreation Plan requires input from residents with a committee focused on the Open Space & Recreation Plan Update to help guide the planning process. The South Hadley Open Space & Recreation Plan Update Advisory Committee has the responsibility of providing and coordinating community input as well as guiding the development of the plan’s recommendations. To that end, the Committee will:
- Meet on a regular basis to discuss the Plan and the planning process;
- Working through the Planning & Conservation Department staff, assist in the coordination and dissemination of relevant information via a variety of forums;
- Function as the central element of the Community Engagement process including encouraging community participation and assisting in analyzing the input;
- Coordinate project activities and schedule with the Planning & Conservation Department staff and consulting team;
- Review and comment on drafts of each plan element;
- Provide guidance to consulting team on key policy issues that arise through the planning process; and
- Make recommendations as needed to the Planning Board relating to the update’s policy recommendations and implementation program.
Timeframe: The Open Space & Recreation Plan has a short-term deadline in that it must be completed – with State approval as the final step – no later than June 30, 2019 for the Town to maintain eligibility for several critical grant programs. We anticipate the complete draft of the plan will be ready for submittal to the State by mid-April 2019.
Meetings: Community Engagement is central to this process and the Committee is essential to achieve successful Community Engagement through a variety of meetings.
The Committee is anticipated to meet approximately 5 times.
- One or more Community Engagement meetings focused on this Plan will also be held and the Committee members are anticipated to participate in those meetings as well.
- While the Committee meetings are anticipated to be held at Town Hall, the Community Engagement meeting(s) may be held elsewhere in the community.
- The Committee should not exceed 9 persons (5-7 persons would be preferred)
- The Committee should be representative of the community and reflect the issues which the Plan Update is anticipated to address including the variety of recreation needs, role of open space and conservation in our community, an aging population, etc. As such, the Committee would benefit from having representatives of the varying demographics and diversity of interests in the Town. Given the requirements of the State’s planning process and the anticipated Plan issues, at a minimum, representatives of the following should be included on this committee:
- Bike/Walk Committee
- Conservation Commission
- Council on Aging
- Recreation Commission
- Planning Board or Master Plan Implementation Committee
Committee Coordination: The Committee activities are to be coordinated through the Planning & Conservation Department staff – Director Richard Harris and Conservation Administrator/Assistant Planner Anne Capra.