By Bill Short
The Millington Board of Mayor and Aldermen voted unanimously this week to accept a 20-Year Master Plan as a guide for the city’s physical development.
Board members took the action Monday night during their regular monthly meeting on a motion offered by Alderman Bethany Huffman and seconded by Alderman Don Lowry.
The plan, along with maps, descriptive matter, exhibits and charts, was approved at the April 16 meeting of the Millington Planning Commission and posted on the city’s Web site.
Charles Goforth, planning consultant for the city, said the commission is the only public body required by state law to “actually adopt” the plan.
But he thought it would be “a good idea” to submit it to the board members, because most of them were “directly involved” in the process of preparing it.
“It is a general guide,” Goforth noted. “I like to say it’s not carved in stone, but it’s not written on a napkin either.”
Because no one can anticipate everything that will occur during the next 20 years, he said there will be “changes” that are “not picked up” in the plan.
During discussion shortly before the vote, Huffman thanked Goforth, the commission and the residents who volunteered to serve on an advisory committee for the plan.
“You all did a lot of work,” she said. “And I think we can be really proud of this for the next 20 years for development in our city.”
When Alderman Thomas McGhee called the plan “a giant step forward,” Alderman Mike Caruthers noted that it will require “a lot of implementation.”
“A plan is not any good if you don’t use it,” he concluded.
Title 13 of the Tennessee Code Annotated grants the state’s municipalities and counties the authority to do planning; to “regulate” residents’ behavior, including the use of private property; and to promote the “health, safety, welfare and morals of the public.”
T.C.A. Section 13-4-201 states that it is the “function and duty” of the planning commission to prepare and adopt an “official general plan” for the physical development of the municipality. Such a plan must include any area outside of Millington that the commission believes is related to the planning of the municipality.
Goforth has said the last general plan for Millington was prepared in the 1970s. Because it is supposed to be “updated on a regular basis,” he said last year that it was “time to take a look at the future” and see where the city is “going to go.”
An Advisory Committee was appointed last summer to assist in development of the plan. It was comprised of members of the planning commission, Board of Mayor and Aldermen, School Board, Industrial Development Board, Airport Authority, Millington Area Chamber of Commerce and various civic clubs.
The committee conducted a public meeting at the Baker Community Center on the fourth Monday of each month from July 24, 2017 through Feb. 26, except in December, because that was Christmas Day.
A Notice of Public Hearing on the plan was published in the March 15 edition of The Millington Star.
The plan was first presented to the planning commission at its March 19 meeting. Millington residents were given an opportunity to “discuss and comment” on it during a Public Hearing at the commission’s April 16 meeting.
By Bill Short