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Gallatin County Proposes New Strategy to Manage Growth
The Gallatin County Commissioners have shelved the countywide growth management plan that they have worked on for over 3 years. At first blush, the Commissioners’ decision might seem reasonable; they have stated that, with little development happening right now, there is no need to adopt their plan. Gallatin Grassroots Forum sees it quite differently. The right time to plan for a flood is during the dry season – not when the floodwaters are upon you. Likewise, this is precisely the time to enact their plan to manage growth in a way that protects what is most special about the Valley – before the inevitable flood of development returns.
Gallatin Grassroots Forum believes it is too important for Gallatin County to delay planning for growth. Yes, there has been a slow down of development caused by the recession – but, Gallatin County is still one of the fastest growing counties in the country. Last year we were again in the top 3% of the fastest growing counties in the United States. If our rate of growth for the next 20 years is the same as it has been the past 20 years, we will almost double in size, adding over 30,000 new houses to the Valley.
The Commissioners’ countywide rural zoning proposal will save millions in taxpayer dollars, protect rural land values, and safeguard our magnificent landscape and all that it provides: productive ranches and farms, clean water, and great wildlife habitat. This proposal is also is vital to our region’s economic competitive advantage: it’s our university, our infrastructure (such as the airport), and yes, our wide-open rural landscape, that ensures that advantage.
Please take a minute to read the key points to consider regarding countywide zoning posted above this message. It briefly outlines why this plan should move forward as scheduled. We have also posted below a short fact sheet regarding countywide zoning.
We will be organizing an effort to make sure that the Commissioners understand how important it is that they move ahead with countywide zoning, and we will need the help of folks like you who care deeply about the future of our county. It would be very helpful if you could to call, write, or email the Commissioners regarding this decision and urge them to forge ahead. They can be reached at 582-3000, 311 West Main, Room 306, Bozeman, MT, 59715, firstname.lastname@example.org.
City of Bozeman Updates 2020 Community Plan
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Chart created by the Missoula City/County Health Department
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