Rep. Cormier Is Right And Wrong.

Representative Cormier from Belknap County is sponsoring legislation to dissolve regional planning commissions in New Hampshire.

It's a commendable effort and one that I tried back in 1998 but it's also an LSR which, at most, will get 'refer to interim study.' if not a committee recommendation: ITL.

The Weirs Times had a really good editorial by the legislator showing the comfortable salaries by regional planners, paid by local fees and she painted it against what these regional planning commissions actually accomplish for their area(s).

This goes on statewide...

This legislation will fail simply because the well paid planners will offer substantive information of the conduit they provide for the flow of federal grant monies from everything from affordable housing to mass transit. It's hard to make an argument against the flow of money, regardless of where the source is and how it's gotten.

The only way I've ever found to stop regional planning is for individual communities to drop their membership fees from their commission. For example up here in northern New Hampshire the town of Bartlett dropped out of North Country Council Inc. and was almost followed by Berlin. At the time I believe Bartlett believed they weren't getting anything from their membership, and Berlin wanted to start their own 'Economic Development District.' and apply for federal grants on their own.

I'd note that neither Bartlett or Berlin went through with their plans. I believe Bartlett now pays a reduced rate for membership, and the idea for Berlin to leave North Country Council was defeated by the city council.