Special Series, Part 6: Make or Break – Year One of the Regional Planning Board - Metropolitan Planning Council

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Special Series, Part 6: Make or Break – Year One of the Regional Planning Board

The sixth in the series: Get to know the Regional Planning Board

For years, neighboring communities have had to compete with each other to attract the most tax dollars, often at the expense of local quality of life, economic development, school excellence, personal and social health, and basic needs like water and sewage. While some competition among municipalities is healthy, it’s become increasingly clear that any local victories are fleeting; we’re racing our neighbors to the bottom as long as we allow our region to fragment and decay. Thankfully, Chicagoland has an historic opportunity to unite and regain our competitive edge through the development of a strong Regional Planning Board. The state legislature has given the board just one year to develop a plan for success. This series, “Make or Break – Year One of the Regional Planning Board” analyzes the issues the board must tackle in the months ahead.

Get to Know the Regional Planning Board

On April 12, the Regional Planning Board announced it had hired Randall Blankenhorn to be the executive director of the new organization. MPC congratulates the Regional Planning Board for its swift action in finding and hiring a skilled executive director. Blankenhorn will bring a great deal of experience working on a wide variety of transportation and land use planning projects to the daily operations of the Regional Planning Board.

The hiring of Blankenhorn is the board’s latest step in solidifying its basic structure. Over the last six months, members have been appointed, organized into committees, brought on consultants to support the transition decision, moved the CATS and NIPC staffs into one office, hired an executive director, and begun reviewing applications for membership on its Citizens Advisory Committee.

The next steps for securing the basic structure of the organization include selecting members of the Citizens Advisory Committee, deciding on the composition of the federally mandated metropolitan planning organization (MPO) that must be part of the board, and solidifying its committee and staff structure.

Get to know the current structure of the board with this helpful chart of the temporary board structure:

Transitional Organization Chart

Click here for an enlarged version of this chart.

The following is available at the Regional Planning Board Web site at www.rpbchicago.org:

Information on Randall Blankenhorn, executive director of the Regional Planning Board.

Information on the board and its committees, including their responsibilities.

News release about the Citizens Advisory Committee.

Click here to read the rest of the "Make or Break" series.

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