Your Nation's Capital & The Management Doctor Need Your Help

The Management Doctor has a contract with the District of Columbia to recommend if they should have a Planning Commission, how to best implement the Comprehensive Plan, as well as how Planning should participate in the Capital Improvement Program. We are looking for the following information:

  1. No Planning Commission
    To our knowledge Boston, Houston and Washington DC are the only three major cities that do not have a Planning Commission. Do you know of others?
  2. Planning Commissions vs. Zoning Commissions
    In most communities the Planning Commission advises on the comprehensive plan but also handles the zoning and current planning activities. However, a few communities like Fort Worth and San Antonio have both a Planning Commission and a Zoning Commission. Do you know of others that have both?
  3. Control of Planning Staff
    In most communities, the Planning Director and staff report either to the Mayor, City Manager, or City Council, then serve the Planning Commission, but also have other functions in the Planning Department. Do you know of any communities where the planning staff is directly controlled by the Planning Commission? Or do you know of any communities where there are two separate technical and professional staffs; one that serves only the Planning Commission and the other that is the staff of the Planning Department?
  4. Final Decisions
    In many communities, most actions by the Planning Commission are appealable to or recommended to the City Council. However, in the District of Columbia, Zoning and PUD actions are heard and decided by a Zoning Commission with no appeal to the City Council. Do you know of other communities where either a Zoning Commission or Planning Commission takes final action with no action by or appeal to the elected officials?
  5. Split Staff
    In many communities the long range planning functions and current planning are handled by a Unified Planning Department. However, in a few communities, Long-Range Planning and Current Planning are in two separate departments. This is true in San Diego and San Antonio. Do you know of other cities where they are split into two different departments?
  6. Capital Improvement Programs
    Planning Departments have tended to not play a very important role in Capital Improvement Programs. Do you know of any cities where they play a major role?
  7. Planning Commissioners Pay
    How much are your Planning Commissioners paid?
Thank you,

The Management Doctor

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