Issue 31 | April 2016
Hillsborough River Board celebrates 30 years!
River Board 30 Yrs Congratulations to our Hillsborough River Interlocal Planning Board and Technical Advisory Council on 30 years of planning for the environmental health of the Hillsborough River! Created by the Florida Legislature in 1986 to monitor activities and actions in and around the Hillsborough River, the River Board adopted and maintains the River Master Plan and makes recommendations for the river's continued vitality to local governments, regulatory agencies, and others. Accomplishments of the River Board's impact on the Hillsborough River are being celebrated throughout Hillsborough County and the region...  

Tampa City Council

in celebration of the 3O anniversary and proudly support its preservation of the Hillsborough River
April 28, 2016
Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council Future of the Region Awards - 1st Place
Tampa Bay
Planning Council

1st Place
Future of the Region Awards
Natural Environment Category

April 22, 2016

Florida APA Sun Coast section Award of Excellence
Florida Chapter of the
American Planning Association

Sun Coast Section

Award of Excellence
Annual Awards Program
April 20, 2016 

Hillsborough County
Board of County Commissioners

in recognition of significant
impacts to our community
April 20, 2016

City of Temple Terrace
Mayor Frank Chillura

recognizing work and achievements
April 5, 2016

Read more about the River Board's 30 years

Welcome new Planning Commissioner Tony Rodriguez!
At the April 11th Planning Commission meeting, James A. "Tony" Rodriguez, AICP, (left in picture) took his oath as Ex-Officio member representing MacDill Air Force Base in his role as Base Community Planner. He brings with him more than 25 years of public and private sector experience in policy, management, planning, and engineering. Mr. Rodriguez previously represented MacDill as an Ex-Officio Planning Commissioner from 2005 - 2007. Welcome back Commissioner Rodriguez!

Dozens 'check out' our new and improved Library
Dozens of friends, new and old, stopped by our April 11 Open House to check us out. Our new and improved Planning Commission Library takes advantage of a new location in our offices. Courtesy of the Hillsborough County Public Library Cooperative, a brand new popular reading pocket library joined our collection of planning documents and maps; historical aerials and archives; newspapers and magazines; and our recently acquired presidential papers.

"Many of our new features have a broad appeal and are so convenient for people who do business in County Center," said our Librarian, Terry Eagan. "The new library is a great place to relax and do some research or reading." Terry is happy to assist with various resources and services Monday - Friday from 9a - 4p.

More information on the Planning Commission Library

Economic Development served up at April Info BBQ
Our Spring Info BBQ highlighted economic development in Hillsborough County's smaller cities. The first guest speaker, Jake Austin - President and CEO of the Plant City Economic Development Corporation, highlighted the many development opportunities in the pipeline for Plant City. Working closely with their partners - the City of Plant City, the Greater Plant City Chamber of Commerce, and Plant City Main Street, the EDC is welcoming extensive development in Midtown, Northeast Plant City, and along County Line Road.

Next up, Martin Hudson - Redevelopment Director for the City of Temple Terrace, talked about the advantages of being a close neighbor to USF and strategies to promote Temple Terrace as the 'Gateway to Innovation.' Excited about prospects, his action plan focuses on the value of making vision a reality when it comes to mixed use development. "When businesses are deciding where to locate, the main questions asked today are proximity to transit, trails and fitness centers," said Marty Hudson. "Our region will have to up our game, if we want to retain and attract the best and the brightest."

Staff retreat and boat tour
On April 15, Plan Hillsborough staff gathered at the John F. Germany Public Library for a retreat focused on communication styles and new ideas to work together more effectively. "The results were great," said Melissa Zornitta, Planning Commission Executive Director. "Staff is energized to move forward on the implementation steps on our strategic plan." Following the morning meetings, staff boarded a Pirate Taxi for an environmental and economic development tour along the Hillsborough River and downtown Tampa waterways.

Meet our new Plan Hillsborough staff
Over the past year, we've been growing! We're excited to introduce you to the newest members of our Planning Commission staff!

On our Comprehensive Planning Policy Review team:
Melissa Lienhard, AICP, Principal Planner
Jennifer Malone, Community Planner II
Brandon Henry, Planning & Zoning Tech II

On our Environmental, Research & Infrastructure team:
Tatiana Gonzalez, Senior Planner
Melissa Dickens, AICP, Community Planner II

On our Planning Support Services team:
Michael Rempfer, Computer Support & Network Specialist

On our Transportation (MPO staff) team:
Johnny Wong, Community Planner II
Wanda West, Administrative Specialist II

Learn about the roles and responsibilities of all our staff

Application deadline extended to May 1, 2016!
Announcing our new FLiP program to introduce Future Leaders in Planning to the planning profession! The Planning Commission is partnering with Hillsborough County Public Schools to initiate this student development program. Hillsborough County High School students currently in good standing in grades 9, 10, and 11 are eligible to apply now through May 1, 2016.

On June 21 and June 22, selected students will embark on tours on foot, bus, and streetcar to experience a variety of speakers, presentations, and activities to gain a broad exposure to planning. The FLiP program will provide:
  • The chance to network with planning professionals and other students with a passion for planning for a thriving future for our community
  • The opportunity to learn from public and private sector professionals in the planning and related government services fields
  • Broad exposure to planning from multiple perspectives, including: comprehensive planning, economic development, environmental, historic preservation, community redevelopment, transportation, geographic information systems, education and research, and more
FLiP info and application

In accordance with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and other
nondiscrimination laws, public participation is solicited without regard
to race, color, national origin, age, sex, religion, disability or family status. 
Read more about the our commitment to non-discrimination and other requirements.