Bill placing 60-day limit on Planning Commission review fails

February 2, 2021

A bill, which would have mandated that any application for a rezoning, special use permit or special exception must be acted upon by a local planning commission within 60 days of official submission, was passed-by-indefinitely in the Senate Local Government Committee on January 25.

SB 1249 (Stuart) also included problematic language that would have been impossible for localities to implement. Specifically, a requirement that the planning commission approve or disapprove such applications, and that reasons for disapproval shall be communicated to the applicant in writing. Such notification shall include “… modifications, or corrections that will permit approval…” of the application. Given that such applications are approved by the local governing body and the planning commission only provides recommendations, there is no feasible way to comply with the proposed standard.

Thank you VACo members for sharing your comments and concerns with committee members on how the proposal would have affected the review of applications by the county planning commission.

VACo Contact: Joe Lerch, AICP

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