Town Planning Director

Town of Colchester

Colchester, CT United States

General Statement of Duties

Coordinate and manage all facets of the Land Use Department in the functional areas of municipal planning, zoning, inland wetlands and watercourses, and conservation, historic preservation and economic development, including site plan and subdivision review, public improvements, and implementation of the Town Plan of Conservation and Development. Works cooperatively with the Building Official, Town Engineer, Health District Sanitarian and other municipal department heads to further the mission of the Department.


Supervision received

Receives general supervision from the First Selectman and works cooperatively with the chairman of land use boards and commissions.


Supervision Exercised

Plan, supervise and coordinate the work of the Land Use Department including direct supervision of the Land Use Assistant, Assistant Planner/Zoning Enforcement Officer and Wetlands Enforcement Officer. Assign work to staff in functional areas of Planning, Zoning Permitting and Enforcement, Wetlands Permitting and Enforcement, as well as Blight Enforcement.


Essential Duties

1.         Work closely with other Town departments in developing near-term and long-range development plans.

2.         Coordinate program assignments with Regional and State planning agencies.

3.         Compile and analyze data on economic, social and physical factors affecting development.

4.         Coordinate the review and commentary on preliminary and final subdivision and site plans, special permit applications and zone change applications for commercial, recreational, office, industrial and residential development proposals.

5.         Review economic base and employment data, demographic, housing and income data for economic development.

6.         Prepare initiatives in seeking out intergovernmental assistance in addressing the economic needs of the Town.

7.         In cooperation with Department staff, provide administrative assistance and professional expertise to Planning & Zoning Commission, Zoning Board of Appeals, Conservation Commission, Historic District Commission, Economic Development Commission, Open Space Advisory Committee and other boards and commissions as assigned.


8.         Plan agenda items and coordinate meeting records and material as needed.

9.         Maintain and implement municipal land use regulations including Land Development (Zoning) Regulations, Subdivision Regulations, Inland Wetlands & Watercourses Regulations, the Historic District Handbook, Plan of Conservation and Development, and Affordable Housing Plan.

10.       Confer with attorneys, developers and general public on planning and development matters.

11.       Prepare and make budget recommendations for the Land Use Department.

12.       Prepare statistical and narrative reports of some complexity for First Selectman, Board of Selectmen and other Boards and Commissions as requested.

13.       Report work accomplished to the First Selectman and to the various land use boards and commissions.

14.       Maintains inventories, maps and related information on wetlands, open space and areas of ecological, biological, geological and hydrological significance.

15.       Perform on-site inspections for proposed subdivisions and other developments.

16.       Participate in professional planning organizations to remain current on technological and legal changes.

17.       Prepare grant applications for projects that further the mission of the Department and manage administration of the same.

18.       Contribute to preparation of long-range Capital Improvement Plan (CIP).


Knowledge, abilities and skills:

1.         Thorough knowledge of the principles and procedures of municipal planning including its physical, social and economic aspects.

2.         Knowledge of research techniques involved in community planning, including problem definition, data collection and analysis.

3.         Ability to analyze complex data and develop alternative solutions to planning problems.

4.         Ability to manage a team of interdisciplinary professionals.

5.         Ability to effectively communicate orally and in writing.

6.         Ability to deal effectively with other staff, government officials and the general public.

7.         Ability to perform the essential functions of the job with or without reasonable accommodations.

8.         Must possess strong interpersonal, organization, negotiation and presentation skills.

9.         Must be familiar with Geographic Information Systems. (GIS)


Experience and Training:

1.         Master’s degree in city, urban or regional planning.  Candidates with a bachelor’s degree in city, urban or regional planning may be considered with additional years of experience.

2.         Five years’ experience in land use planning, including administrative and supervisory expertise preferred.

3.         Certification as a Planner by the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) is preferred.

4.         Valid motor vehicle operator’s license.

Experience Level
Mid II (4-8 years)
AICP Level
Land Use and Development Regulation and Zoning
Salary Range

Contact Information

Lori Merker-Chapman
127 Norwich Ave
Colchester, CT
United States
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