The Department advises the City Manager, Planning Commission, and City Council on all physical, economic, and social development matters.

The Planning Department works with citizens and community leaders to build consensus on how the City should develop in both the short term and long term. The Department endeavors to keep the Comprehensive Plan up-to-date and to review all new development proposals to ensure they reflect this vision.

In addition to keeping the Comprehensive Plan up-to-date, the Department endeavors to integrate the Brownfield Area Wide Plan and the National Disaster Resilience (NDR) activities into its work programs Planners within the department work on these long and medium range projects while also coordinating land development review activities with various city departments as part of the Development Review Team. We review all zone changes, plan amendments, annexations, conditional uses, subdivisions, vacations, and variance requests. In addition to maintaining the Comprehensive Plan, Brownfields Plan and Zoning Ordinance, the department is actively involved in Code Enforcement, the Renaissance Zone, and VISTA efforts.