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Comprehensive library planning program prospectus
(April 1968)

Chapter I: introduction,   pp. [1]-[6] PDF (2.3 MB)

Page [1]

Chapter I
The Southeastern Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (SEWRPC) was created in August 1960 under
the provisions of Section 66.945 of the Wisconsin Statutes. It exists to serve and assist the local units of
government and their citizens in planning on an orderly basis for the physical development of a seven-
county Region comprised of Kenosha, Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, Walworth, Washington, and Waukesha
Counties (see Map 1).
The Commission is composed of 21 members, three from each of the member counties. Two of the three
Commissioners from each county are appointed to the Commission by the Governor and one from each
county is elected to the Commission by the county board. Funds necessary to support the SEWRPC opera-
tions are provided in part by the member counties, and the budget is apportioned among the seven counties
on the basis of relative equalized assessed valuation. The Commission is authorized to request and accept
aid in any form from all levels and agencies of government for the purpose of accomplishing its objectives
and is authorized to deal directly with the Federal Government in this respect. The present committee and
staff structure of the Commission is shown in Figure 1.
As the official research and study agency for one of the nation's large urbanizing regions, the Commission
is charged with the responsibility of accomplishing research on areawide development problems, for
formulating and recommending solutions to such problems, and for ultimately preparing an advisory plan
for the physical development of the Region. Such research and planning activity is intended to serve as
a basis for the extension of assistance and advice to federal, state, and local units of government, as well
as to private investors and interested citizen groups. Thus, equipped with research studies and carefully
prepared plans, the Commission can communicate with governmental units as requested and speak from
a background of factual information about areawide problems which cannot be properly resolved within the
framework of a single municipality or even a single county. As such, the Regional Planning Commission
has three principal functions to perform:
1. Inventory-the collection, analysis, and dissemination of basic planning and engineering data on
a uniform, areawide basis so that, in light of such data, the various levels and agencies of govern-
ment and private investors operating within the Region can better make decisions concerning com-
munity development.
2. Plan Design-the preparation of a framework of long-range plans for the physical development of
the Region, these plans being limited to those functional elements having areawide significance.
To this end the Commission is charged by law with the function and duty of "making and adopting
a master plan for the physical development of the Region." The permissible scope and content of
this plan, as outlined in the enabling legislation, extend to all phases of regional development,
implicitly emphasizing, however, the preparation of alternative spatial designs for the use of land
and for the supporting transportation and utility facilities.
3. Plan Implementation-promotion of plan implementation through the provision of a center for the
coordination of the many planning and plan implementation activities carried on by the various
levels and agencies of government operating within the Region.
The major emphasis of the Commission's efforts to date has been on the preparation of two of the key
elements of a comprehensive plan for the physical development of the Region. This effort has resulted in
the adoption by the Commission in December of 1966 of a regional land use plan and a regional transporta-
tion plan. It is logical that the Commission's efforts should be next directed toward the preparation of
two additional important elements of a comprehensive plan for the physical development of the Region:
a regional public facilities plan and a regional public utilities plan.

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