"To work in partnership with the communities of the Southwest Region to promote sound decision-making for the conservation and effective management of natural, cultural and economic resources."
The Southwest Region Planning Commission is one of New Hampshire's nine regional planning agencies established by RSA 36. The Commission covers a planning district made up of 35 towns and covering approximately 1,000 square miles comprising the Southwest Region of the State. The agency has a diverse work program made up of six major program areas:
To implement its work program, the Commission is funded through multiple sources which include local dues contributed by member municipalities. For each dollar of local dues, the agency's operating budget contains an additional six dollars to assist in meeting the needs of the organization and its member municipalities. These additional revenues are provided by way of various federal, state and local grants and contracts. These resources provide the Commission with the ability to assemble the tools and expertise to which member municipalities have direct access.
The Southwest Region Planning Commission is a public planning agency which responds to statutory requirements, contractual obligations of several State agencies and the needs of member communities. The diversity of the agency work program reflects the Commission's dynamic nature and ability to accommodate new challenge and opportunity.
Serving the Region's Communities:
The Southwest Region Planning Commission provides local assistance on planning issues to member municipalities. This assistance can come in the form of a wide range of activities including community master planning, site plan review, capital improvement planning, subdivision reviews, ordinance preparation, interpretation of state and local planning requirements, grant administration, cartographic support, and geographic information system (GIS) applications.
The Planning Commission is able to provide additional services through project-specific contracts with member towns, outside funding support or some combination of these. Examples of such activities include master plan preparation and updates, planning board assistance, mapping and GIS services, economic development planning, and community development block grant administration.
Regional Planning - Beyond Town Borders:
A primary charge of the Planning Commission is to represent member towns on issues which have a larger-than-local focus. For example, to effectively protect and manage the Region's rivers, lakes, forests, and wetlands requires a multi-community effort. Many of our transportation facilities are designed to link the Region's towns to each other and to points beyond. The Commission's efforts include working with the Region's municipalities to establish priorities for transportation facility needs (roads, bridges, etc.) and coordinating these priorities with the State of New Hampshire to facilitate funding assistance. The Commission places an emphasis on representing the Region to secure its fair share of federal and state resources available for planning and infrastructure projects.