DOBSON — A public hearing is set for Monday night on an updated document that will dictate how land is used in Surry County.
The hearing is set for 7:30 p.m. in the Commissioner’s Meeting Room at the Surry County Government Center in Dobson.
The document, Land Use Plan 2020, is designed to address emerging land use issues and conservation strategies.
It is being updated to include current economic factors, Planning Director Kim Bates said recently.
The county’s current plan, Land Use Plan 2015, was adopted by the Surry County Board of Commissioners in October 2006.
Frequent updates to the county’s comprehensive land use plan are encouraged by many state and federal agencies, Bates said, and that information can factor into grant money for prospective businesses.
The proposed plan takes the current economic climate into account, and tightens down on the amount of land designated rural growth areas, according to the planning director.
“The idea is that times are tighter economically,” he said. “Money is tighter so we’re reducing the acreage available for commercial development because the county might not be able to provide water, sewer and other services to such large areas like those in the existing plan.”
The plan, which was presented to the county commissioners earlier this year and has been available for public viewing, constricts rural growth areas, updates the small area plans and takes into account economic factors including:
• The 60 percent decline in manufacturing jobs in the county since 2000.
• The doubling of the unemployment rate since 2004.
• The slowing of residential development.
While the plan could be changed based on public comment, the county board could vote to approve it immediately following the public hearing.
Reach Keith Strange at email@example.com or 719-1929.