Seeley Swan Pathfinder -

By Colleen Kesterson

Committee Focuses on Economic Development Element Edits

Swan Valley Regional Planning Committee


SWAN VALLEY - The Swan Valley Regional Planning Committee (SVRPC) discussed and used edits and comments from the public to clarify section 2.4 New Industrial Development in the second element of the plan draft entitled Economic Development at their meeting on Jan. 24. They also addressed the goals, policies and actions pertaining to the Economic Development Element.

The SVRPC accepted public comments about the wording to the draft’s New Industrial Development section, eliminated unnecessary sentences and clarified other wording.

The New Industrial Development section of the original plan draft read that a particle board plant would be an example of small-scale manufacturing in the Swan Valley. SVRPC member Dianne Ericson read a public comment that stated that making particle board is a poor choice as it uses too much energy, water and may pollute ground and surface water. The comment suggested a small biomass plant that would produce heat for the community hall, library and school.

The committee agreed with Chair Ken Donovan when he said it was best to keep the section general and not describe what industry should be in the Swan. Committee member Dave Johnson took exception to the word slash being used for manufacturing. He said he never heard of slash every being used and encouraged the committee to change it to small-diameter stems. The committee voted to word the paragraph as follows:

“The Swan may be best suited for small-scale manufacturing. For example, industry using small-diameter stems from thinning, fuel reduction and other forest management activities as its raw material. Suitable locations within the community are identified in the Land Use Element.”

The SVRPC turned its attention to the Goals, Policies and Actions of the Economic Development Element.

The committee left the Goals as written and voted to keep the original Policies except for number three which they moved to Actions. The new Action reads: “Consider the development of a safe bikeway interconnection with the Adventure Cyclists’ Great Divide mountain bike route and the Seeley Lake Bikeway system.”

Work will continue on the remaining Actions in the Economic Development Element at the next meeting scheduled for Wed. Feb.15, 7 p.m. at the Swan Valley Community Hall.


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