The Stafford County Board of Supervisors, capping more than two years of work, has approved a new comprehensive subdivision ordinance to streamline the process developers must follow.
The new process went into effect upon adoption of the ordinance last week. It is expected to shorten the time developers must wait for their plans to be reviewed and approved or denied.
For example, the ordinance will lessen by one month the time required for the county's Planning Commission to act on the preliminary plans of developers.
Once a developer submits final plans, county approval will be made in 60 days by the county's administrative staff.
Previously, final plans had to be approved in 45 days, but because they went first to the administrative staff and then had to wait until they could be put on the agenda of the Planning Commission, the county frequently exceeded the 45-day deadline.
Developers now will have six months instead of 60 days to record their final plans. Administrators said this will give builders a greater opportunity to arrange financing.
Local builders played a large role in the new ordinance's development, serving on committees and participating in hearings on its proposed content. Passage of the ordinance was supported by the developers and builders throughout its review.
The supervisors first looked at the measure in July and after some review sent it back to the Planning Commission for additional definition and specification. The ordinance passed 5 to 1 last week.