Other Courses and Webinars

PMPEI is expanding its core planning and zoning curriculum to include other new or supplemental courses and webinars. One supplemental course has been completed and others are currently in development.

The completed course is Drafting the Zoning Ordinance: Rules and Tools. This course deals with key elements and issues in crafting a zoning ordinance. It focuses on the local decisions that have to be made in putting an ordinance together. This is a one-session class.

These courses are in development:

  • Planning and the Official Map. Contrary to its misleading name, the Official Map is a land use regulatory tool that has been part of planning for decades. It is a powerful and underutilized regulatory tool that provides flexibility for municipalities as they implement their plans. Special natural environment features, historic sites, and public health and safety needs are common uses of the Official Map. (This is a two-session course.)
  • Variances and Unnecessary Hardship: The Standards After “Hertzberg.” Zoning, and particularly variances, is a continuing matter of interest and contention. In 1998, with the Hertzberg decision in Pittsburgh, municipalities have been forced to look at the criteria for unnecessary hardship required to grant variances in a different way. How we got to this point, and what the new standards for determining unnecessary hardship are, is the focus of this course. (Still to be determined is if this will be a one or two-session course.)

 PMPEI Webinars

The Benefits of an Effective Planning Commission

An orientation to the work of a planning commission: what it does, where it fits in, the relationship of the planning commission with the governing body, how it coordinates with other boards and commissions, how it can contribute to the long-term sustainability of the community. Stan Lembeck, AICP, PMPEI Director will be the instructor.


Webinar: Duties of a Zoning Hearing Board – May 13, 2020 – 5:30 pm

Webinar: Duties of a Zoning Officer – May 20, 2020 – 5:30 pm

The MPC states that every municipality that enacts a zoning ordinance shall create a zoning hearing board and it must have an official who handles the day-to-day work of administering the ordinance. This two-part webinar will review the job each is responsible for, along with the basic terms used in zoning, special exceptions, variances, nonconformities, notice of violation of the ordinance, plus the basic of the zoning hearing process. Stan Lembeck, AICP, PMPEI Director, who has many years of experience on a zoning hearing board, will be the instructor.

For more information on how to register for a live webinar or to request a recorded link,contact: tdickow@boroughs.org or call (800) 232-7722 ext. 1042.

Other Webinars of Interest

Understanding the Benefits of  Complete Streets Policies

Jeff Riegner, vice president of Whitman, Requardt & Associates, LLP will explain how nearly 800 jurisdictions across the United States – including hundreds of small and medium-sized municipalities – have been transformed by adopting and implementing Complete Streets policies. Some of the benefits they have experienced are improved safety, livability, and economic development. This webinar will provide an understanding of what the term “Complete Streets” means, the benefits

of Complete Streets for boroughs and other communities, and the unique opportunities and challenges of implementing Complete Streets in Pennsylvania. Many case studies that can serve as great examples for your community will be presented. Jeff is a professional engineer and certified planner with 25 years of transportation and land use consulting experience, mostly for public-sector clients.

05/10/2018 – Understanding the Benefits of Complete Streets Policies

For more information on how to register for a live webinar or to request a recorded link, contact Terri Dickow tdickow@boroughs.org (800) 232-7722 ext. 1042.

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