"Our main purpose is to help Ferguson Township create and realize a vision for its future. We provide decision-makers with timely, accurate information and staff support to help them develop and refine that vision. We ensure that the goals, objectives and policies articulated by the Township in the Strategic Plan are implemented through the efficient, accurate, and consistent administration of the Code of Ordinances. We also help Ferguson Township fulfill its vision by providing technical support to other departments and community groups as we all work together to build, finance, protect, support, and create an equitable, sustainable, and healthy community for present and future generations."
The Planning and Zoning Department include the Director of Planning and Zoning, the Zoning Administrator, a receptionist, a part-time Ordinance Enforcement Officer, and two contract employees, the Township Sewage Enforcement Officer and the Health Inspector. The Department is responsible for all planning, subdivision, and land development within the Township. Any person who wishes to subdivide or develop land within the Township must file plans with this Department. In addition, homeowners who wish to make changes to their home or property may need to obtain a zoning permit from the Zoning Administrator in addition to the possible acquisition of a building permit from the Centre Region Code Office.
Director of Planning and Zoning: The Director is responsible for oversight of the department, preparation of planning reports, development of new and revised ordinances, plan review processing and the Planning Commission agenda, administration of the Township’s Recreation , Parks and Open Space Plan, and most importantly, planning for the future of the community. Both the Director of Planning and Zoning and the Zoning Administrator work closely with developers, engineers, regional planners and other officials to develop and monitor the various stages of planning and development.
Community Planner: The Community Planner is responsible for providing support to the Planning & Zoning Department. The primary responsibility is to assist with the subdivision and land development plan review process with tasks such as review, tracking, distribution, communication, and organization. In addition, the Community Planner helps the Department with larger planning issues, including but not limited to ensuring that the zoning and SALDO codes put the comprehensive plan into action, are consistent with each other and other ordinances, and accomplish the goals of the Township. The Community Planner also helps to anticipate future trends based upon current and future demographics of the municipality and region, and further work with Director and staff to address changes creatively. Other duties and responsibilities planning-related GIS mapping and outreach on specific projects with the community.
Zoning Administrator: The Zoning Administrator is responsible for issuing permits for new construction as well as permits required for alterations and additions to existing structures. These include zoning, sign, and home occupation permits. Additionally, the Zoning Administrator is responsible for inspection and site plan enforcement, driveway permits, lighting and sign ordinance enforcement, and identification of other zoning violations throughout the Township. The Zoning Administrator is the person responsible for all questions related to the Township’s Zoning Ordinance.
Ordinance Enforcement Officer: The Ordinance Enforcement Officer is employed part-time and is responsible for policing the Township to ensure compliance with various sections of the Code of Ordinances. This includes regulations related to weeds and vegetation, snow removal from public sidewalks, and enforcement of other ordinances. In addition, the Ordinance Enforcement Officer also represents the Police Department as their Animal Control Officer.
Sewage Enforcement Officer: The Sewage Enforcement Officer (SEO) reviews the design for and issues permits for on-lot septic systems within the Township. The SEO also responds to complaints of on-lot septic system malfunctions, reviews repairs, tank replacements, and planning modules, and is responsible for completing the field work necessary for the on-lot sewage management program. This program, which now encompasses all land outside of the Regional Growth Boundary, is currently administered by the Centre Region Code Office.
Health Officer: Responsible for permitting eating and drinking establishments, and responding to any issues that may impact the health of Township residents. This position is contracted through the State College Borough Department of Ordinance Enforcement and Public Health (DOEPH). Contact the DOEPH at the State College Borough.
If you would like to speak with someone in the Planning and Zoning Department, please contact the Township office at (814) 238-4651. You may also contact the Director and Zoning Administrator via email.