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Thursday, 04 January 2007 03:01

Amador County General Plan: The Process Continues

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slide9The Amador County General Plan is well underway according to Jeff Henderson with EDAW, the consulting firm hired by the County to assist in the general plan update. Henderson recently gave a presentation describing what progress has been made up to this point. Henderson explained that after the formation of the General Plan Amendment Committee 5 open houses were held at different times and at various places throughout the County for anyone who was interested in the General Plan process. These open houses featured information stations that were organized in different topics covered by the General Plan. Overall, Henderson said that about 150 people attended these open houses, which he said was “relatively good input (and that) we would like to see that level of input continue if not increase. Henderson also said that the General Plan Advisory Committee (GPAC) has held 6 meetings thus far to facilitate the general plan update process.

slide12 The first meeting held was the introduction to the General Plan as well as the other GPAC members from there they proceeded to go over the bylaws which set the function and format of the Committee.

slide13 The second through third meetings encompassed a visioning exercise which began with all the members being given the task to take pictures of places, monuments, areas, or anything any other thing in Amador County that they would like to preserve.rd GPAC meeting. Committee members were asked to include subject matter that they feel benefits their quality of life as well as what makes Amador County special to them. The pictures were used the next meeting to identify what common themes were found throughout the pictures and their subject matter; from there a visioning statement was drafted at the 3rd GPAC meeting.

The 4th meeting addressed a growing concern among citizens and committee member alike, growth. Population and housing issues were addressed during this meeting.

slide14 The 6th meeting held then addressed agricultural issues. Henderson went over the emerging Vision Statement that was developed through the process. He explained that the statement covers several areas and is intended to read of the County’s environment in the year 2030. “If we accomplish the General Plan (these) statements will actively describe the County in 2030.”

slide16 The Vision Statement states, “We, the citizens of Amador County, envision the County in the year 2030 as a place known for its high quality of life, historic resources, healthy natural environment, sustainable local economy, scenic resources and vistas, and services that meet our people’s needs.” Also developed was a Community Statement. It describes Amador County as having “small, distinct towns where neighbors know and can depend on one another” in the year 2030. It mentions low crime rates, a feeling of security, a sustainable economy that provides jobs, encourages unique small businesses and a good quality of life as well as a community that offers affordable housing.

The Character Vision Statement echoes what most people mention they love best about Amador County, the history its beauty and a rural lifestyle. “We protect and enhance our County’s unique character – its history, natural beauty, and rural lifestyle. Due to our successful efforts, our historic and cultural heritage; scenic vistas, agricultural, rivers, streams, and other natural areas; and historic buildings and towns continue to attract visitors. Another statement refers to protecting Amador County’s resources such as, open space, agriculture, timber, water, wildlife, etc. for “the present and future generations.”

slide17 Under the Services statement it describes the County striving to provide utilities and services for the future generations as well as maintaining a rural lifestyle and character while still providing the upkeep of roadways, alternate transportation routes, health care, quality child care and senior services, as well as excellent child and adult education.

Henderson in closing gave the time line for the rest of the process. Through March of 2007 the Committee expects to continue discussions with the information they have received through the open houses and other community and meeting input. In April and May of 2007 the EDAW will begin preparing the land use and circulation alternatives for consideration by the entire GPAC. In June of 2007 the committee will select a preferred alternative while July through December they will prepare the General Plan policies.

Henderson encouraged public involvement and reiterated that the GPAC meetings are open to the public. For more information on the GPAC meetings or information visit the County’s website at The next meeting is scheduled for January 11th 6-8 pm at the Amador County Administration Center

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