There is a lot of new development happening in Huber Heights. Our current mayor has a goal to reach 50,000 new residents by 2030, that’s 7,000 more residents that last census. This may or may not be a good thing, either way, you might want to let your Huber Heights Council know your thoughts on some of this development, so consider this a Making Your Voice Heard primer.
The development timeline can vary from development to development, but in general there are two groups who hold meetings at which you can make your thoughts heard, the Huber Heights City Council, and the Huber Heights Planning Commission. City Council consists of elected representatives and the Planning Commission consists of appointed volunteers, who, according to Huber Heights City website:
“… reviews and approves all Planned Unit Developments (PUDs), rezoning requests, and any new subdivisions. The Planning Commission is the platting agency for the City. The Planning Commission approves and recommends a comprehensive land-use plan and an official map of the City to the City Council for review and approval. The Planning Commission also prepares and recommends to City Council ordinances and resolutions that promote the general welfare of the City and its inhabitants.”
A developer would likely reach out to the City administration to see if the City would be open to a proposed development. If the City appears to be agreeable, the developer goes to the Planning Commission for very early discussion and Planning Commission approval. There is often quite a bit of discussion at this stage, and this is the first place to make your voice heard. You can email the Planning Commission liaison, check the website for details on who to contact. Currently the Huber Heights website says:
“For Citizen Comments, please submit by email to Geri Hoskins or by calling the Planning Office at 937-237-5809. Comments must be received prior to 5 p.m. on the day of the meeting.”
Getting lots of your neighbors to email makes a bigger impact. You can do a quick Google search on how to write effective letters and emails to your local city councils, briefly, be respectful, understand that most cities consider development a positive thing and welcome new development, so simply stating that it will create more congestion isn’t a valid enough reason for most city councils to oppose new development and Huber Heights is no exception. Councils might listen to other reasons why a new subdivision isn’t a good idea so your own due diligence is crucial.
Once you’ve created a compelling argument against new development, you can email your Council. Find their email addresses here. To get your information to the Planning Commission, email the Clerk of Council, and make certain to put the case number in the Subject Line; for example, Basic Development Plan 23-02, will be listed as BDP 23-02 . By emailing the Clerk of Council, this email will become part of the Citizen’s Comment history of this development. You can see an example of the process, with a citizen letter, here.
Don’t get nervous! City governments have no way of knowing what their constituents want unless they speak up. Planning Commission and City Council meetings are online, and you can go back and watch them to get an idea of how they work. I encourage any citizen to speak up- our government is only as good as the voice of its citizens.
Photo by Patrick Fore on Unsplash