Sullivans Island Why Have a Comp Plan


Why Have One?

It is State Mandated

The State of South Carolina legislature, through the 1994 Local Government Planning Enabling Act (Title 6, Chapter 29 of State Code), requires every municipality to develop a Comprehensive Municipal Plan that is reviewed every five (5) years for land use changes and every ten (10) years for a full update (SC Code 6-29-340). SC Legislature prescribes elements that must be incorporated in a state compliant Comprehensive Plan. Municipalities must include an inventory of current conditions, identify long-range needs and goals for these elements and, lastly, strategies to achieve these goals.

Currently SC Legislature requires incorporation of the following nine (9) elements in a compliant Comprehensive Plan:

  1. Population
  2. Economic
  3. Cultural Resources
  4. Natural Resources
  5. Community Facilities
  6. Housing
  7. Land Use
  8. Transportation
  9. Priority Investment

While mandated by law, the Comprehensive Plan is much more than a plan to be completed per state law and put on a shelf. A regular Comprehensive Plan update provides opportunities for our community.

Opportunity to Develop a Shared Community Vision

First and foremost, the Comprehensive Plan is a roadmap for the future of the Town. As such, the community has a regular opportunity to come together to initiate a conversation about all the elements that make Sullivans Island a special place to live. Plan updates invite meaningful community conversations to develop and/or reaffirm the shared vision of Sullivans Islands future.

The process of updating the Comprehensive Plan, while spearheaded as a task for the Planning Commission, is a shared responsibility and privilege for all Islanders. The Plan update is an open, public process. Sharing your ideas and vision are essential to a successful and meaningful Plan.

Identifies Towns Strengths & Weaknesses

The exercise of inventorying the nine required elements helps educate the community on how the Island operates and why. More importantly, the element review provides the community and officials with an opportunity to identify both what has been working for the? Island and areas where the Town needs to see improvement. This process informs the shared Plan Needs & Goals and brings forth ideas for strategies to achieve these goals.

Future Planning & Goals

Since the finished product will be a long-range strategic plan, the community leaves the process with a roadmap for the 10-year future of the Town. This Plan serves as a useful resource for officials and staff as they plan for the implementation of Town goals.

The Towns laws, land use/zoning and policies flow from the overarching themes and goals articulated in the Comprehensive Plan. A successful Plan should be referenced often when the Town engages in policy making and modification of the Towns Code of Laws.

Given the importance of this Comprehensive Plan process and the finished product, we hope you will join us for some or all of the public workshops to share your ideas.