Upcoming Events
June 27 The Natural Resources Advisory Committee will meet at 3:30 p.m. at SWRPC's offices at 37 Ashuelot Street in Keene, NH. For more information contact Lisa Murphy of SWRPC staff.
July 19 The Monadnock Alliance for Sustainable Transportation Steering Committee will meet from 4:30 p.m. at SWRPC's offices at 37 Ashuelot Street in Keene, NH. For more information contact Henry Underwood of SWRPC staff.

 

Other Items of Interest
Letters of intent for Congestion Mitigation and  Air Quality grant funding due July 7th. Learn more by clicking here.
The Regional Public Involvement Plan for Southwest New Hampshire has been adopted and released. To view the plan, please click here.

The NH Broadband Mapping and Planning Program needs your help! Take the Broadband Access Survey and Speed Test to help identify homes and businesses that are un-served and underserved for high speed internet. Info

For additional NH planning events, see the NH Office of Energy and Planning Events Calendar.
Discover more about Granite State Future.
To learn about Monadnock Region Future: A Plan for Southwest New Hampshire visit.
To learn about the Greater Keene Air Quality Education and Outreach Campaign visit
To learn about the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant decommissioning process visit

 

Highlights - June 2014

 SWRPC June 2014

 Commission Highlights

Vol. 20 - No. 6

 

Check out the SWRPC Highlights Archive for previous issues.

Current Issue in PDF format.


2014 Annual Commission Meeting

The Planning Commission held its 2014 Annual Commission Meeting on June 17, 2014 at Keene State College. The event included the approval of the Commission’s work program budget as well as the election of directors and officers for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2014. Guest speakers included Dr. Anne E. Huot, President of Keene State College and Dr. Alicia B. Harvey-Smith, President of River Valley Community College. For more information, please contact Becky Baldwin of Commission staff.


Richmond Four Corners Future: A Community Conversation

One of the values of SWRPC to its member towns is its ability to provide public meeting facilitation services and allow town residents and officials to enter dialogue with each other as neighbors. SWRPC can help optimize public participation by assisting with designing an event which focuses on ensuring that everyone is heard and that discussion stays on topic and on time. This was the case on June 21st when staff, with the help of the Richmond Community Development Association (RCDA), organized a 2½ hour community conversation about the now closed Four Corners Store and its surroundings. The meeting began with a survey and was followed by a presentation with information about Richmond’s population, forecasted growth, economic development, transportation, housing, and land use trends. After the informational presentation, the results of the survey were presented and the approximately 70 participants broke into small groups to answer questions prompting their views about planning considerations for the Four Corners Store property, town-owned land, and the state of businesses, services, transportation, and housing in the Four Corners area. Maps were provided to mark up and document each groups’ ideas. After the small group sessions, spokespersons reported back on where their group had consensus on each of the topic areas. SWRPC is in the process of summarizing the process and comments, which will be used as a basis to help the Town and the RCDA form their own vision and action plan for the Four Corners area. A draft vision and action plan will be shared and discussed with the general public in a planned meeting for the fall. For more information about this event, or to learn about opportunities for an event like this in your community, please contact J. B. Mack of Commission staff.


Road/Stream Crossing Assessments

Planning Commission staff recently completed training sessions offered by the University of New Hampshire Technology Transfer Center and the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NH DES) regarding updates and improvements to the Statewide Asset Data Exchange System (SADES). Assessments, originally developed by the NH Geological Survey, catalog physical characteristics associated with flood events, rapid erosion, and other hazards. Evaluations are enabled by a scoring tool that ranks a crossing based on its compatibility with the river and its ability to allow fish and other wildlife passage through structures. The training sessions have provided planning commission staff with the ability to collect crossing information for municipalities, NH DOT, NH DES, and others. For more information, please contact Henry Underwood of Commission staff.


CDBG Application Writing Workshop

On June 4, 2014 Planning Commission staff attended the Community Development Block Grant Application Writing Workshop hosted by the NH Community Development Finance Authority at the Red River Theatre in Concord, NH. The workshop covered eligible projects, federal requirements, scoring process, housing and public facilities applications, economic development applications, and the new online Webgrants system through which all new applications must be submitted. For more information about the CDBG program, please contact Rebeckah Bullock of Commission staff.


Broadband Capacity Building

The Town of Greenfield was selected as one of three communities in the state to receive technical assistance and training in the form of broadband capacity building from the University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension (UNHCE) as part of its Ready Communities initiative. Representatives from SWRPC, UNHCE, and the NH Department of Resources and Economic Development have been meeting periodically with members of the Economic Development Committee in Greenfield to discuss ways to gather neighborhood level broadband availability data. Currently the group is working on promoting the web-based broadband speed test located at www.iwantbroadbandnh.org as well as developing a community-wide survey regarding broadband availability which will be distributed to residents and businesses in the coming months. For more information, please contact Steve Waleryszak of Commission staff.


Hazard Mitigation Training

Planning Commission staff recently attended a two-day workshop on hazard mitigation planning that was sponsored by FEMA and NH Homeland Security and Emergency Management. The workshop provided information on the most current methods used to prepare local hazard mitigation plans, including cost/benefit analysis, risk assessments and vulnerability, hazard profiling, and prioritization of mitigation actions. Sessions also included information regarding the latest requirements needed to obtain hazard mitigation plan approval. Group exercises were conducted to allow participants the opportunity to explore possible scenarios that may be utilized in local plan updates. For more information about hazard mitigation planning, please contact Lisa Murphy of Commission staff.