CItizen Planner Marquette County Classroom Program 2022

October 3, 2022 12:59PM - 6:00PM

Marquette Charter Township - Community Room, 1000 Commerce Dr., Marquette, MI 49855

Contact: For more information, contact Kara Kelly, Citizen Planner Program Coordinator at

Oct. 3 - Nov. 7, 2022
6-9 p.m. ET
Additional local session December 6

About Citizen Planner

The Michigan State University (MSU) Extension Citizen Planner Program offers land use education for locally appointed and elected planning officials, zoning administrators and interested residents throughout Michigan.

Citizen Planner is a time-tested educational program proven to be comprehensive without being overwhelming. The program is delivered locally to provide a convenient way for busy community leaders to obtain the latest technical knowledge and the proficiency they need to perform their duties more effectively and responsibly.

Why Citizen Planner?

Local officials have a responsibility to help their communities manage the impacts of economic change and be part of the solutions to challenges their communities face. Local communities that proactively plan to succeed in the Digital Economy can improve their quality of life and overall sustainability. The Citizen Planner Program empowers local officials to shape the future of their communities by providing them with the tools and education they need to lead.

Citizen Planner Classroom Curriculum

Citizen Planner instructors include MSU Faculty, MSU Extension educators, planners and attorneys. The classroom program consists of six sessions:

  1. Understanding the Planning and Zoning Context – Learn the legal sources and limitations of planning and zoning authority, and explore your understanding of ethical decision-making.
  2. Planning for the Future of Your Community – Recognize the function and importance of a master plan, know the process for developing one and its relationship to zoning.
  3. Implementing the Plan with Zoning – Discover the importance of zoning, learn how zoning is administered and gain confidence in your zoning reviews, including site plans.
  4. Making Zoning Decisions – Learn how to adopt and amend a zoning ordinance, understand the role of the zoning board of appeals and obtain skills in basic property development methods.
  5. Using Innovative Planning and Zoning – Strategize with placemaking and design-based solutions for local and regional success in the Digital Economy.
  6. Successfully Fulfilling Your Role – Strengthen your ethical decision-making skills, apply standards to your decision-making and know when to ask for help.

MSU Extension awards Citizen Planner Program participants a certificate of completion.

Participants who complete the Citizen Planner Classroom Program are eligible to earn the Master Citizen Planner (MCP) credential. In addition to completing the course, the MCP credential requires passing an online exam and capstone presentation, and meeting annual continuing education requirements. Master Citizen Planners may receive incentives, such as future course discounts, exclusive training opportunities, and scholarships for annual conferences and regional training offered by partnering organizations. The MCP designation is an achievement recognized as the standard of excellence among planning officials and community leaders in Michigan.

The Marquette County Citizen Planner Program will be held on Monday evenings from 6 until 9 p.m. on the following dates: October 3, 10, 17, 24, Tuesday November 1, and Monday, November 7. There will be a 7th class offered live via Zoom on Tuesday, December 6. The webinar on December 6 will be hosted by the County, to highlight county efforts and resources and is not part of the six core sessions and cannot be used to earn the certificate. Classes will be held at the Marquette Charter Township - Community Room located at 1000 Commerce Dr., Marquette, MI 49855. For more information, including a detailed class schedule and fees, please view the Event Flyer below.

This MSU Extension Citizen Planner Program is brought to you in coordination with Marquette County.

Course Fee
The course fee is $250 per participant for the complete core program. The fee covers registration and course materials. A group (4 or more) discount is available. Participants that complete all six sessions will receive a certificate of completion.

Grants / Scholarships

Scholarships may be available from your community’s liability insurance provider. Michigan Township Participating Plan offers to its municipal members one per community, which covers the complete registration cost for participation in the Citizen Planner Program. For more information, please visit us on the web at For member governments of the Michigan Municipal Risk Management Authority (MMRMA), contact Cara Ceci at 800-243-1324 for more information regarding grants for education and training through the Risk Avoidance Program (RAP). For municipalities obtaining insurance through Nickel & Saph, Inc. Insurance Agency, contact Stephen R. Saph, Jr. at 586-463-4573 or Contact your community’s liability insurance provider to see if similar grants or scholarships are available.


Registrations cancelled on or after Sept. 16, 2022, will be assessed a $45 cancellation fee.



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Tags: land use, michigan citizen planner, michigan state univeristy extension, msu extension, planning, zoning

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