IRONWOOD — Michigan State University Extension will offer a training program for local officials working in planning, zoning, community and economic development starting next month.
The MSUE Citizen Planner program will meet Thursday evenings between Sept. 19 and Oct. 30, with the final session on a Wednesday. Local courses will meet from 5 to 8 p.m. at Gogebic Community College.
The training includes proper procedure for planning and zoning, knowledge to avoid compromising people’s due process and private property rights and more, a news release said. Instructors for the training program include MSUE educators who specialize in land use planning, law and zoning. The course includes multiple instructors so participants receive different perspectives.
The classes will be taught as a live webinar among GCC, Marquette City Hall and the St. Ignace Public Library. Participants will be able to ask questions of the instructor and other classroom locations in real time with a live microphone. Sessions will be hosted by an on-site facilitator.
Participants that complete all seven sessions will receive a certificate of completion and may continue on to become a master citizen planner. Scholarships for attending the program may be available from a government’s liability insurance provider, such as the Michigan Municipal Risk Management Authority, Michigan Township Participating Plan and others.
Ninety-one percent of participants in the 2012 citizen planner programs rated instructors as “very good” or “excellent,” with 94 percent of participants rating their level of knowledge after attending the sessions as “good” to “excellent.”
Early registration is encouraged. Participants may register online at events.anr.msu.edu/citizenplannerup2013 or by phone at 269-657-8213. The registration deadline is Sept. 11.