This list of questions and answers covers topics that are important for clarification before the public vote on the Your Voice, Our Future Plan. This list will be updated periodically to reflect questions asked by residents that we meet at various events.
Your Voice, Our Future
The community-led Your Voice, Our Future Plan will help determine decisions made for Oro Valley over the next ten years. It takes a high level look at the community, and doesn’t set Town budgets or call for new taxes. The Plan includes a range of important topics such as public safety, natural beauty, parks and recreation and how to make our community more family-friendly. This Plan uses the community’s vision to set directions for residents, stakeholders, officials and Town staff to use in making decisions over the next decade.
Arizona state law requires all cities, towns and counties in Arizona to have an updated General Plan every 10 years that is approved by voters. A plan must include important topics, including water, land use, growth and circulation. The Your Voice, Our Future Plan outlines directions for topics that are required and others that important to the community, like parks and recreation and the environment, and will be used to guide future decisions in the community.
A plan should also reflect changes in a community’s population. Oro Valley has changed since the last General Plan in 2005. There is no longer a “typical” Oro Valley resident. The 2005 Plan reflects the 2005 Oro Valley. The Your Voice, Our Future Plan reflects Oro Valley and community’s values today.
Towns create plans in order to understand the community and set future directions. The Your Voice, Our Future General Plan helps us understand how Oro Valley has changed, what the community’s values are, and uses those values to guide decisions over the next 10 years.
The Your Voice, Our Future Plan has been improved through the drafting process.
- Committee Draft (30% Completion) April 2015 – Created and reviewed by the Your Voice Community, Environment and Development Committee members. The three committees of Oro Valley residents met a total of 29 times to discuss Oro Valley’s future, craft the goals, policies and actions of the Your Voice, Our Future Plan, and to review and consider comments and ideas from community members.
- Public Review Draft (60% Completion) June 2015 – Presented to the public, Town boards and commissions, neighboring government agencies and local stakeholder groups for review and comment. Over 1,000 comments were received, many of which helped clarify the Plan.
- Recommended Draft (90% Completion) September 2015 – Tentatively adopted by the Town Council in November 2015, then presented to the public through a public outreach campaign in early 2015. Few comments were made, all of which supported the goals, policies and actions in the Plan.
The Your Voice, Our Future Plan was finalized in June 2016. Changes included:
- Administrative edits – Correct typographical errors, formatting and minor text edits.
- Updated data – Include the most recent maps, tables and information.
- Plan dedication to Bill Adler – Acknowledge a dedicated community activist.
- Revised “small town” language – Clarify meaning of “small town” as used in the Plan. The term was intended to convey a feeling of friendliness of the community and not the size or growth potential. The revised language will help avoid future confusion and strengthen the Plan.
- Intent of land use changes – Clarify the Your Voice Committee preference that changes to the Land Use Map be handled through the plan amendment process, due to the robust public engagement involved in a formal application.
To learn about the changes, check out the Town Council staff report and summary of changes attachment for the 9/21/2016 Town Council meeting here.
The Plan takes the highest look at the community. The Plan does not call for new taxes or set the Town budgets or identify capital improvements. Instead, the Your Voice, Our Future Plan sets direction so that residents, stakeholders, officials and Town staff have a guide for making decisions over the next decade.
Many of the actions to implement the Plan will move forward through careful planning and will use existing resources, while others may wait until funds become available. Each main chapter of the Your Voice, Our Future Plan states that the community will be consistently engaged in conversations about funding.
The Your Voice, Our Future Plan, voted on by the residents of Oro Valley, will officially guide and inform residents, stakeholders, Town staff, and elected and appointed officials. Residents and stakeholders can look to the Plan to understand the vision of Oro Valley’s future. Town staff and elected and appointed officials will use the Plan’s goals and polices as a foundation for decision making. Over the next 10 years, they will put the Plan into action through the action items listed in Chapter 6: Getting to Work.
After the voters make a decision on the Your Voice, Our Future Plan, it’s time for action. The Plan will be used as guide over the next 10 years. The current plan outlines actions as well as a specific implementation program to monitor results. Examples from the Plan include:
- Create partnerships with higher education institutions and museums to share programs and cultural resources.
- Integrate public art into Town parks and trail systems.
- Integrate family-friendly amenities into the trail system, such as areas for play, rest, water, shade and learning.
- Conserve scenic views of ridgelines, hillsides, peaks and foothills of the surrounding mountain ranges that contribute to the Town’s valued scenic character.
- Plan for the growth of the community by creating an annexation strategy that reflects sound financial planning.
- Provide consistent connections in the pedestrian and bikeway systems.
The Your Voice, Our Future Plan will make a difference!
There are a few ways you can join the community conversation!
- Participate in community events or meetings where Your Voice, Our Future staff and volunteers are present.
- Request a Your Voice, Our Future representative to come and meet with your neighbors or group at a meeting. Contact staff at email@example.com for more information.
Don't forget, participate in the public vote on the Your Voice, Our Future Plan in the November 2016 election!
Contact one of the staff people helping with this project. They would be happy to answer questions or hear any feedback.
Elisa Hamblin, AICP
Long Range Principal Planner
Bayer Vella, LEED-AP, AICP
Phase 1 – Let’s talk! (Sep 2013 – May 2014)
Oro Valley residents and stakeholders established priorities through open conversations. Many events and outreach efforts provided the opportunity to discuss, debate and listen to one another to gain common understanding. The aim was to bring many voices together.
The results were formed into a big-picture vision statement about Oro Valley’s future. It answers the question, “What should Oro Valley be like in 10 years and beyond?” The Vision is further defined through twelve Guiding Principles that illustrate what matters most to the community. The community’s Vision and Guiding Principles were endorsed by the Town Council on May 7, 2014 and set the stage to build a long-range plan of action.
Phase 2 – Let’s think! (Jun 2014 – Nov 2015)
Residents and stakeholders came together to create a Plan with specific goals and polices for the future. The aim was to understand the community’s concerns and aspirations; clarify goals and policies; and address needs, preferences and trends. The product was the Your Voice, Our Future Plan. At the end of Phase 2 the Plan was first presented to the Planning and Zoning Commission then later to the Town Council, which tentatively adopted the Plan in November 2015.
Phase 3 – Do it! Make it so! (Dec 2015 – Nov 2016)
The Your Voice, Our Future Plan is being presented to the community. The aim is to show how the document, created by Oro Valley residents, reflects the community's direction and to spark additional discussion. The Plan will be finalized in the summer of 2016. Voters will be encouraged to participate in an election on the Your Voice, Our Future General Plan on November 8, 2016.