1 W. Main St. | Newcastle, WY 82701
Weston County Planning and Zoning
Welcome to Weston County Planning and Zoning
News & Events
The Weston County Board of Commissioners took action in a Public Hearing on July 17, 2012, to adopt the proposed revisions to the Weston County Subdivision Rules and Regulation. The Amended Subdivision Rules and Regulations can be accessed under the “Subdivision Rules & Regulations” link, or by contacting the Weston County Clerk’s Office.
Please note – the link may take a few minutes to download.
WHAT IS PLANNING?
Planning is a process for developing long-range and short-term goals, objectives and strategies in order to better manage land use issues within a community. The objective of planning is to help local officials and residents alleviate community oriented problems by recommending solutions and alternatives to these and other local issues. Some of the issues we all deal with on a daily basis are; roads, schools, infrastructure, new development, redevelopment, land conflicts, social, economic, and environmental issues and others that impact the sustainability of our community. A large part of planning requires forecasting the future needs of a community but this can only be done successfully by involving the community in the planning process. Good planning relies on communication between elected officials, local staff and a community’s residents.
WHAT IS THE OBJECTIVE OF THE PLANNING & ZONING OFFICE IN WESTON COUNTY?
Weston County has always taken a simplified approach to land use management. Most communities in the nation and even some in Wyoming have addressed land use issues through zoning. Weston County is in the minority when it comes to using or not using zoning as a means for resolving and managing land use matters. With this in mind, the only local land use regulations that the county currently has are subdivision regulations. It is the responsibility of this office to manage the division of lands throughout the county. Other duties of this office include the updating of the county’s subdivision regulations, mapping, grant writing, comprehensive (long-range) planning and coordinating projects and meetings with the County Commissioners and the County Planning & Zoning Commission. Wyoming State Statutes provide a unique approach to land divisions that are classified as exempt from county subdivision regulations, but in many cases this office and county officials get involved in assisting the public with understanding, applying and utilizing the land use regulations that come from the state.
The application of grants has been used to improve and maintain county roads; this assistance helps to minimize the use of county funds for road projects. Grants have also been used to build county facilities and renovate older buildings such as the courthouse, the Sheriff’s Department and Mallo Camp. The goal of Comprehensive Planning is to provide a vision of the future for growth and development in the county to current and future officials and residents. It is the intent of this office to promote the assets and resources of this community and to help organize this capital in order to more efficiently benefit the residents of Weston County, now and in the future.
STATE AGENCIES THAT ARE INVOLVED IN LAND MANAGEMENT IN THE COUNTY AND THE STATE
There are three state agencies that are involved in the land development process. The Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) is the state agency that oversees the installation of sewer systems. The State Engineer’s Office oversees the drilling of wells and other duties and the Department of Fire Prevention oversees various aspects of construction. These three agencies require a person to get permits because these types of amenities can have an effect on the quality of life of landowners.
WHAT IS THE HISTORY OF PLANNING IN WESTON COUNTY?
The history, heritage and motivation of a community help to provide a base for future planning in a community; therefore the greatest assets within a community such as Weston County are its people. Wyoming’s neighborly approach to planning allows for a strong communication network between residents, local officials and state agencies, and through this network Wyoming citizens are benefitted by numerous resources that can help them retain the values and qualities that have made this a great state to live in.
Based on the rural atmosphere of most of the State of Wyoming, Wyoming residents and elected officials have been careful not to urbanize the state to a degree that other states in the nation have implemented planning policies, and this conservative approach to growth and change in Wyoming has helped to preserve its beauty. In 1975 state and local officials developed the Wyoming State Land Use Plan that was eventually adopted in 1979. The legislative session of 1975 that enacted the State land Use Planning Act was the commencement of statewide and local planning in Wyoming (W.S. 9-19-101 through 9-19-601). “This act was an effort by the legislature to address land use problems…” Weston County officials were part of the statewide and local comprehensive planning process. What is interesting about the county’s initial planning efforts is that our forefathers established goals and objectives that addressed similar land use issues that our current county residents and officials face. Therefore, planning is not new to Wyoming, but it is a means for implementing the vision of a community’s residents.
Finally, an important aspect of planning is community outreach and to be of assistance to the community by helping its residents and elected officials establish a vision for the community. Once a vision of the community is established, it is the duty of the county as a whole to establish the methods for accomplishing that vision. Planning can be an asset to this community as it has been in many others. The key elements to successful planning rely on motivation, organization, trust, initiative, values, assets, tradition, improvement, optimism and providing options.
“Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement and success have no meaning.” Benjamin Franklin
News and Events
Planning and Zoning meet every 3rd Thursday of the month at 6:00 p.m.
Chairman of the Weston County Commission
Past County Elected Officials
Lists of former county elected officials are now available online! These date back to 1915!