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Comprehensive Planning: How to Prepare, Update, & Implement Your Plan

April 27, 2013 @ 12:30 pm - 4:00 pm



When your city decides to create a planning commission, enabling legislation in Alabama states that your commission must prepare a master or comprehensive plan. Therefore, preparing and adopting a master plan is a mandatory requirement, not an option. When the comprehensive plan is adopted is must serve as the foundation for the city’s planning program and, as such, must be continually reviewed and periodically updated. The purpose of this workshop is to discuss ways your city can fulfill these responsibilities.

You’ll review:

  • The basic surveys and studies which form the foundation of the plan
  • Successful approaches to involving the community in formulating goals and evaluating alternatives
  • The statutory requirements to adopting and updating the plan
  • The implementation of the plan through regulatory and functional planning
  • The political and institutional implications of the plan as a public statement of the city’s development policies.

The workshop provides a practical orientation and guide to those citizens who serve as appointed members of local planning commissions or as elected members of the city councils. Other local officials and staff, engineers, consultants, and others will also benefit from a better understanding of the key role comprehensive planning plays in the development of their community.


Katherine Ennis recently retired as the Director of Planning & Inspections for the City of Northport, Alabama, where she oversees the administration of the City’s zoning ordinance, subdivision regulations, comprehensive plan and building code standards. Katherine has over 28 years of experience in municipal, county, and regional planning. In addition to her work with Northport, Katherine is an elected official sitting on the City Council of the City of Helena, Alabama. She has also served on Helena’s planning commission, design review board and chaired their greenway committee. Katherine is a member of the Auburn University Planning Advisory Council, has served nine years in various positions on the Executive Committee of the Alabama Chapter of the American Planning Association, currently as its President, and sits on the Board of Directors of Your Town Alabama. Originally from Louisville, Kentucky, Katherine moved to Alabama in 1980. She is a Graduate of Auburn University with Masters Degrees in both Community Planning and Public Administration and holds an undergraduate degree in Marketing. Katherine began her career in public service in 1982 with the City of Auburn where she worked for 18 years in the planning department. In 2000 she joined the staff of Shelby County’s Planning Department as the Senior Planner in charge of land development. In 2002 she took a position with Central Alabama Regional Planning and Development Commission as Senior Planner, serving the three counties and ten cities in that region. In 2006 Katherine assumed her current position with the City of Northport. 

CAPZO Credits

0.35 credits are available for this event.

Registration / More Information

To register, visit the Alabama Planning Institute’s website or call 1-800-825-5862, ext. 4862.

This course is part of a six-course series that can be taken for CAPZO certification.


April 27, 2013
12:30 pm - 4:00 pm
Event Category:


Fultondale Council Chambers
1210 Walker Chapel Road
Fultondale, AL 35068 United States
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Alabama Planning Institute
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