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New Comprehensive Permitting and Zoning Guides Now Available for Northwest Michigan

News Release
November 5, 2012



Scott Gest, Regional Planner
(231) 929-5091


New Comprehensive Permitting and Zoning Guides Now Available in Northwest Michigan


NORTHWEST MI—Volume 2 of the Northwest Michigan County Permitting and Zoning Guides are now available to the public online at the Northwest Michigan Council of Governments’ (NWMCOG) website. The county guides are available through a collaboration between the NWMCOG, the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce, the Northern Lakes Economic Alliance, the Cadillac Area Chamber of Commerce, the Alliance for Economic Success and respective county planning departments and commissions.

The guides are quick references for contact information and education tools for individuals, contractors, and developers. The guides include critical information about the approval process necessary prior to applying for permits or undertaking a project within a county or municipality. Volume 2 includes new editions for Charlevoix, Emmet, and Manistee counties and updated editions for Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, Leelanau, and Wexford counties. With the addition of the three new county guides, this effort has created the State's only comprehensive regional compendium of jurisdictional permitting and zoning processes. It is anticipated that the guides will be updated continuously in coordination with county officials.

“By assisting the general public and development community to gain a greater understanding of the permitting and approval process, we can foster more effective communication and increase the efficiency of the process for both the private and public sectors,” said Matt McCauley, NWMCOG director of regional planning and community development.

The guides are not intended to be "do-it-yourself" tools, as project requirements vary. Following the flowcharts in the guides that have been developed in coordination with the respective zoning administrators does not guarantee that a permit or approval will be issued at the end of the process. However by using the guides, the applicant or contractor should have a better understanding of the process and expectations.

The applicant or contractor should always contact the local zoning administrator, plan reviewer, or permit agent of the various agencies prior to beginning a project.

Applicants and contractors are also encouraged to seek the assistance of local professionals who have experience in dealing with the requirements of permits and approval.

View, download or print the guides at: .



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The professionals at Networks Northwest help our City Council, Planning Commission, and staff make thoughtful decisions to ensure our community is sustainable and resilient for many years to come.

Mark Heydlauff, Charlevoix City Manager