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Planning Division

Meeting Types

Legislative hearings

Legislative hearing involve planning matters of general public policy such as adoption of plans, rezonings, or land use law amendments. Contact with decision-makers outside of the public hearing is allowed, but decision-makers are not required to accept or participate outside the public hearing process.

The conduct of the public hearing will be set by the rules of the decision-making body. Exhibits and written and oral testimony will be accepted and the testimony will be tape recorded. Any exhibits or documents submitted at the hearing will likely be retained for the public record. Minutes of all public hearings will be available.

Regulatory Hearings

Regulatory actions and hearings are the strictest. As these planning matters are dealing with property rights, it is imperative that the project applicant be insured of a "fair and impartial" hearing. Contact with decision-makers outside of the public hearing on the planning matter is prohibited. Examples of regulatory matters are conditional use permits, preliminary plats, and zoning variances.

Actions taken by a decision-making body must be based on factual information. No contact with decision-makers outside of the public hearing is permitted. The decision-making body must give more weight to testimony from experts than lay-citizens. The number of proponents or opponents presenting testimony should have no impact on the final decision, or in other words counting noses cannot be the supporting reason for the decision.

The conduct of the public hearing will be set by the rules of the decision-making body. Exhibits and written and oral testimony will be accepted and the testimony will be tape recorded. Any exhibits or documents submitted at the hearing will likely be retained for the public record. Minutes of all public hearings will be available.

Work sessions

Work sessions are special public meetings called by the Assembly or a board or commission. The meeting is open to the public, but not necessarily for the public to speak to the body. The focus of the work session is usually a presentation on a planning matter to the Assembly, board or commission by staff, a consultant, or a private project advocate. The work session may include attendance of more than one public decision-making body.

Public meetings

Public meetings are usually conducted by Planning Department staff and/or consultants employed by the Department. The purpose of the meeting is to present a planning matter to the public for informational purposes or to gain informal feedback to staff on the matter. Testimony, if any, is usually not recorded although notes may be taken. Reference material is usually available on the matter. No formal action will be taken at a public meeting. Public meetings may be advertised as an open house, workshop, or public meeting. 

    • Planning Division
    • Director: Jerry T. Weaver, Jr.
    • 4700 Elmore Road, Anchorage, AK 99507
    • 907-343-7909