CCAPA Winter Update

2017 is off to a great start for the Connecticut Chapter and the American Planning Association as a whole. APA has launched new programs to better serve the membership, including free access to the publications of the Planners Advisory Service. The annual National Planning Conference will be held in New York City, May 6 – 9, 2017. CCAPA is honored to be part of the Local Host Committee as we welcome the planning community to New York. In addition to posters and other Connecticut-based programs, “Planning for Healthy Rural Communities” is a 2.5-credit “deep dive” session that features CCAPA’s partnership with the Eastern Highlands Health District.

A special thanks to our committee members and volunteers who are carrying out an extensive 2017 work plan. If you have not done so already, please take a minute to read the current issue of CT Planning, available on our website.

Our Membership Committee will soon release a survey of practicing planners. The survey is intended to better guide CCAPA’s programs and services. Our Government Relations Committee is tracking a wide range of issues at the State Capitol. A legislative breakfast is scheduled for March 29, 2017. Please make every effort to join us for breakfast and for meetings with our elected officials.

The Program Committee is developing an excellent calendar of events for the year. We are pleased to co-sponsor the 22nd Gallivan Conference at the UConn Law School: Municipal Climate Policy: Local Solutions for a Global Problem, on March 3, 2017. For more information, please click here.  Our planners are taking important steps to address the impacts of climate change. To learn more about these efforts and the State of Connecticut’s overall program, you may reach out to CCAPA member David Kooris.

With the first change of the White House since 2009, policy conversations, protests and legislative initiatives are happening all around us. Potential changes, such as the future of Brownfield and Community Development Block Grant programs, may directly affect our daily work. Others, such as immigration policy, may affect our entire community. We have a wide range of political viewpoints on these important topics, all of which fall back to some common planning principles. I encourage you to engage the conversation from an informed perspective. We can rely on guidance from APA’s Ethical Principles in Planning and the AICP Code of Ethics, notably our responsibility to seek social justice, to plan for the needs of the disadvantaged, and to promote racial and economic integration.

We all feel the pull from more extreme points of view. It is therefore even more important for us to pay special attention to the interrelatedness of decisions and long-range consequences, both in public meetings and small group settings. Let us continue to seek out opportunities to participate in these important conversations, leading at times, listening at others…but always as a Planner.

Thank you and all the best,

Michael Piscitelli, AICP

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