Planning Practice Monthly: August 2020 Edition

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Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Census 2020

U.S. Census 2020 Deadline Moved to September 30th –Community Outreach Critical to Assure a Complete Count


The United States Census Bureau has revised the extended 2020 Census operational deadline, moving it up a month to September 30, 2020. Data collected by the Census has a tremendous impact on federal funding for critical services throughout the state. As a result, there is a renewed sense of urgency in getting the word out about achieving a complete count of every person living in Maryland.

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Planning Assistance in Action

Lower Eastern Shore’s Critical Area Circuit Rider Internship Program – Celebrating 10 Years of Outstanding Student Contributions

CA Circuit Rider

Each August for the past ten years, the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) has hosted a new Salisbury University (SU) student intern at Planning’s Lower Eastern Shore regional office. A decade later, and in spite of a global pandemic, this year is no exception as planners Tracey Gordy and Keith Lackie will welcome the program’s eleventh student intern to the Critical Area Circuit Rider Internship early this fall. To celebrate this milestone, we would like to spotlight three interns out of all of the outstanding SU Geography and Geosciences students to come through the program.

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Resources and Tools

Self-assessments Help with Planning for Housing

Self-assessments help with Planning for Housing

The Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) believes that addressing affordable housing begins with earnest local dialogue and focused visioning. Nationally developed data, state resources, and comparable best practices and examples are key inputs to a housing needs assessment and action plan, but planning for the housing needs of existing and future residents also calls for internal reflection involving a wide range of stakeholders.

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New! Planning Launches Solar Facility Siting Guidance Webpage

Solar Facility Guidance

In response to the recommendations of the Governor's Task Force on Renewable Energy and Development, Planning developed the Solar Facility Siting Guidance webpage. The webpage provides information and tools to facilitate the development and adjustment of local land use plans and of recommendations with respect to solar facility siting to achieve local goals and objectives.

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Pandemic-Related Transportation Data Tools – Assessing How The COVID-19 Pandemic is Affecting Traffic, Transit Service, and People’s Travel Patterns

Pandemic Traffic

As Maryland navigates through sheltering in place, reopening, pausing, and slowly reopening, we have seen traffic on major highways drop dramatically in March and April, bounce back in May and June, and stay largely flat July through today. In the meantime, although not shut down, public transit has been scaled back in most places and continues to struggle to attract riders; similarly BWI’s passenger traffic is still more than 80% below its normal level.

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New! Open Parcels Notice – Updated Parcel Points and Parcel Polygons Now Available at GIS Download Site

Open Parcels

The latest parcel points and parcel polygons are now available for download either by county (and Baltimore City) or for the entire state of Maryland. The statewide file is available as a geodatabase due to its large size. These files contain the geometries/locations of the points and polygons available in their respective current releases in MdProperty View/FINDER Quantum, linked to Assessments data from August 2020.

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Planning in Progress

We will continue to provide updates about these exciting efforts as they develop in upcoming issues

Registration Now Open!
Attend the Planning Directors' Roundtable Videoconference, September 24, 2020


Please join the Maryland Department of Planning’s (Planning) fall Planning Directors Roundtable videoconference on September 24 from 10:00 am to noon to learn about some of the initiatives Planning is working on and share your experiences of local planning during a pandemic. Join Secretary Rob McCord, Assistant Secretary Valdis Lazdins, and other Planning staff to discuss the latest topics.

Learn More and Register

Registration Now Open!
Become a Walk Maryland Day Leader


In last month’s edition of Planning Practice Monthly we told you about Maryland’s first ever WALKTOBER, a month during which the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) and other partnering agencies will promote and host events and webinars spotlighting Maryland pedestrians’ safety, health, and commuting options in a variety of walk programs and initiatives, including Walk Maryland Day.

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MPCA Corner

Registration Now Open!
Join Us for the 37th Annual Maryland Planning Commissioners Association Conference

Register for the 37th Annual Maryland Planning Commissioners Association Conference

The Maryland Planning Commissioners Association (MPCA) is holding its 37th annual conference this fall. The MPCA board invites you to join us on the Maryland Department of Planning’s GoToWebinar platform on Monday, November 9 (exact times TBD). The theme for this year is Contingency Planning and Resilient Boards, and the agenda will be filled with sessions on timely topics that Maryland's citizen planning boards face now and in the future. The MPCA believes citizen planners will play a central role in developing a more resilient future for Maryland.

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Meet the Planning Staff

Cassandra Malloy

Cassandra Malloy

Cassandra Malloy joined the Maryland Department of Planning (Planning) in November 2019 as an Administrative Specialist III in our Planning Services Division where she is in charge of the herculean tasks of keeping our massive contact database up-to-date and making sure the tremendous number of links on our website remain current.

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Continuing Education & Training


In each newsletter, we highlight the most relevant and timely upcoming events. Our website does include many additional events, so please visit it regularly for updates. Listings are searchable by subject.

Upcoming Conferences and Seminars

Planning related conferences in Maryland and nearby states.

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Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this section is temporarily suspendedFor More Information

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Listed webinars are typically free or low cost and cover a wide range of planning related issues. Many include CM credits.


Environmental Justice Communities: Best Practices to Deal With Natural Disasters 
Tuesday, September 15 @ 1:15 p.m.

AARP Maryland Statewide Census 2020 Forum
Friday, August 28 @ 11:00 a.m.

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Training Around the State

Workshops and classes offered by state agencies or our partners.

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Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this section is temporarily suspendedFor More Information

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Funding Opportunities

Federal, state and/or non-governmental funding.


FY21 Low-to-Moderate Income Energy Efficiency Grant
Maryland Energy Administration - Deadline: October 1

FY21 Commercial, Industrial & Agricultural Grant Program 
Maryland Energy Administration - Deadline: January 12

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