Join MAP

Latest News

2018 MAP Conference Scheduled

Read More >

Education & Training

Planning 101 -Sept. 28, 2015 Fairmont Hot Springs Resort

The Planning 101 Seminar consists of four separate sessions, each 1.5 hours in length as follows:

Introduction and Value of Planning/Constitution 101 (1.5 hours) The rationale and basis for planning with a focus of the rights and responsibilities that a government must balance in land use regulation; including notice, due process, good of the whole, and restraint of rights.  The session will also include a review of the statutory rules and responsibilities of a planning board, including creating work plans, budgets, staffing, public hearings, and general discussion on the legal concepts of planning.  (Robert Horne)

Growth Policies & State Law (1.5 hours) This session will provide information and overview of growth policy preparation and implementation in Montana. This critical element of community planning provides the context and enabling language for creating local land use laws and development programs for assisting communities in achieving goals and objectives. (Janet Cornish)

Subdivision Regulation & Review (1.5 hours) A overview of the basic purposes of subdivision review, the state statutory requirements, local regulations and review procedures, and the affects of recent legislation.  (Wyeth Friday)

Zoning (1.5 hours) An overview of the purpose of zoning, various types of zoning, state statutory requirements, implementation, enforcement, variances and boards of adjustments. (Chris Saunders)

Planning 101 Roundtable -  An opportunity for new (and new to the state) planners to meet with the Planning 101 Instructors and other “veteran” planning and community development professionals

To register for the Planning 101 Seminar click on the Link:

Bios for Planning 101 Presenters

Robert Horne, Jr., AICP. is a native of Florida and received his Master of Science in Planning from Florida State University. Following stints with a regional planning commission in Alabama and a water management district in Florida, he moved out west in 1980 and worked in Colorado Springs for 9 years (4 ½ with the City, and 4 ½ in private practice). He was Planning Director in Jackson, WY for 8 years and was the lead planner for the Town of Jackson on the Jackson-Teton County Comprehensive Plan. From 1997 to 2003 he was City-County Planning Director in Great Falls, where he once again directed and wrote a comprehensive plan, and revised it to meet Growth Policy standards before leaving that position. In 2005 he was hired by the City of Whitefish to set up their first local planning program and to----you guessed it-----write a growth policy. After two years in Whitefish, he reentered private practice with Applied Communications LLC, a firm founded by his wife, Kate McMahon, over 16 years ago. AppCom is now a two-person planning firm whose client base is primarily small communities and rural counties. At this time they are working on several projects around Montana. He has been presenter for the Planning 101 Seminar for five years.

Janet Cornish is the owner and principal of Community Development Services of Montana.   She holds a B.A. Degree from the University of Wisconsin in Political Science and an M.S. in Environmental Studies from the University of Montana.  She has 35 years of experience in community planning, downtown redevelopment, historic preservation, capital improvements and transportation planning, heritage tourism, housing, and municipal finance, particularly in the area of tax increment financing.  Janet recently completed growth policies for the town of East Helena and Butte-Silver Bow.  Janet is a past president of the Montana Association of Planners and currently serves as the organization’s treasurer.  She has been presenter for the Planning 101 Seminar for eight years.

Wyeth Friday is the Manager for the Billings-Yellowstone County City-County Planning Division. He manages a staff of six planners and administrative staff. Wyeth has worked for the Planning Division for almost 11 years, serving as Manager for the past six years. During his tenure, he has worked on current and long range planning projects, including management of a grant and project administration for an update of the County Pre-Disaster Mitigation Plan and West Billings Flood Mitigation and Groundwater Recharge Study, organization of a regional, two-day Infill Development Workshop that moved Billings toward development of an Infill Policy, and ongoing leadership of the City’s Annexation Committee through updates and amendments to the City’s Annexation Policy in coordination with the City’s annual review of its Capital Improvement Program. Wyeth has been a member of the American Planning Association since 2001 and of the American Institute of Certified Planners since 2006. He was President of the Montana Association of Planners for 2011-2013. Covering land use issues as a journalist in Wyoming sparked his interest in planning and he completed a Master’s Degree in City and Regional Planning at Cornell University.  He has been a presenter for the Planning 101 Seminar for two years.

Chris Saunders, AICP is Policy and Planning Manager for the City of Bozeman Department of Planning and Community Development.  He has been with the City for over 14 years and has been lead or co-lead planner for several of Bozeman’s most significant recent planning processes including a new Unified Development Ordinance, Transportation Plan Update, and growth policy. Mr. Saunders received his Masters degree in Town and Regional Planning in 1993 from Utah State University. He has been presenter for the Planning 101 Seminar for eight years. 


Montana Association of Geographic Information Professionals - 2015 Tech sessions

The 2015 MAGIP Tech Session will be held on September 30th - October 2nd at the beautiful Fairmont Hot Springs Resort in Anaconda, MT. 

This years' Tech Session is being held in conjunction with the Montana Association of Planners (MAP) annual conference. The MAP conference will be held on Monday - Wednesday morning (September 28th - 30th) and the MAGIP Tech Session will follow, starting on Wednesday afternoon. Attendees of the MAGIP Tech Session will receive a code to be able to attend the MAP Conference at a discounted rate.

The 2015 MAGIP Tech Session consists of 7 different workshops. You will have the opportunity to select the workshops you would like to attend on the registration form.

Half day workshops are $50 for MAGIP members & MAP attendees or $100 for non members. The 2-day workshop is $300 for MAGIP members & MAP attendees or $600 for non-members. (Non-members, please use the alternate registration link HERE or sign up for membership HERE.)

For more information click HERE.


Future West's film "Preparing for the Boom"

Preparing for the Boom: Below is a link to the just completed film "Preparing for the Boom", an approximately 20 minute compilation of personal interviews, film and graphics in which people tell their stories and share their lessons about how to better prepare for energy


Environmental Permitting in Montana

The Environmental Quality Council division of the Montana Legislative Services has published a reference guide for obtaining air quality, wastewater and opencut mining permits. The permitting primer presents the processes in two easy to understand visual formats. A PDF copy to view on screen and another PDF for printing.

Montana Natural Resources Handbook

A Handbook of Web-based Natural Resource Data, Applications and Tools

Free! Wetland Plant Identification Handbook

Thanks to an EPA Region 8 Wetland Program Development Grant, Montana DEQ has published a free wetland plant identification book titled “Common Native and Invasive Wetland Plants in Montana.”
Books are available for pick up at the following 12 communities, Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Glasgow, Glendive, Great Falls, Havre, Helena, Kalispell, Lewistown, Miles City, Missoula.
For details see:
Link to Book homepage
Link to complete book online

Planning 101 Information

Planning 101 is a one-day seminar on the basics of land use planning brought to you by the Montana Association of Planners. The course provides an overview of the history of planning and an introduction to the laws governing land use in Montana. The course is targeted to a general audience but is particularly beneficial to persons new to the planning profession in Montana; "citizen" planners including planning board members, city council members and county commissioners; and to real estate professionals. The course has been certified by the Montana Board of Realtors and is available for six mandatory real estate continuing education credits.

The course is offered at our annual conference and by request. Additional information about fees and scheduling can be obtained by contacting Janet Cornish, MAP Treasurer and Chair of the Professional Development Committee at 406-723-7993.

General Training Information

MAP provides mini-grants to its members for a number of training and educational activities which promote public education and professional development in the areas of land use planning and community development.  Funds are provided in the following program categories:

Regional Workshop Program Funding - Members are encouraged to gather with others in their MAP District or a neighboring district (including planning board members, county commissioners, city council members, public and private land managers, real estate professionals, etc.) to pursue specialized training, address issues of common concern and to network.  $500 is available per district.

Local Information Sessions - MAP encourages planners at the local level to hold informational sessions for persons in their communities who have a stake in land use issues including real estate professionals, builders, local government officials, title companies, and surveyors.  MAP will provide up to $50 to purchase refreshments and printed materials for these worthwhile local endeavors.

MAP Mentoring Program - MAP will help defray the expenses of mentoring activities.  Persons interested in participating in the Mentoring Program (as mentors of "mentorees") should contact the MAP Board of Directors.  Up to $500 is available for mentoring activities.

For more information, please download a MAP mini-grant application (PDF file )