The Maryland Department of Planning (MDP) has published a new online resource for local jurisdictions on how to incorporate economic development into the local comprehensive plan process.
The resource, titled Placing Jobs, is a step-by-step guide for writing local economic development plans and elements.
It includes guidance for everything from crafting a strong introduction to identifying an economic profile and analyzing fiscal impacts, growth strategies for major economic sectors and targeting areas for economic growth.
The guide offers a framework for local leaders on integrating land use with economic development strategies that preserve resource-based industries, promote tourism, and direct investment toward infill, revitalization and redevelopment in local comprehensive plans.
Planners can refer to the guide’s listing of an inventory of incentives and programs that can be considered while crafting or evaluating economic development strategies.It provides links to best practices, and has an economic data section to help jurisdictions refer to the right data sources and use the best available data.
It also has a map-based interactive tool that makes it easy to access location-specific data in layers such as municipalities and counties, empowerment zones, enterprise zones, BRAC enterprise areas, priority funding areas, transit stations and lines, main street areas, sustainable communities, heritage areas, preservation areas, arts and entertainment districts, etc.
The map tool also shows ‘PlanMaryland” local planning areas – targeted growth and preservation areas aligned with local goals and plans. These designated areas get priority in terms of access to capital resources provided through the plans and programs of state agencies.
The Placing Jobs guide is the 31st publication in MDP’s Models & Guidelines series that aim to help local governments implement policies and achieve community development goals.
The whole series is a part of the PlanMaryland implementation. This is a statewide policy that sets a course for growth, establishing how and where the state should develop, what resources have to be protected, and what role the state and local governments need to play to make it possible.
PlanMaryland aims to create sustainable growth by directing state agencies to align their programs and regulations in support of PlanMaryland objectives, and focus their resources on helping local governments achieve smart growth.
Apart from the Dept. of Planning’s own resources, the Placing Jobs guide also incorporates Maryland economic development resources and incentive programs from other departments including the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED), the Department of Housing and Community Development, and the Department of Labor and Licensing and Regulation.