11-804. Comprehensive plan; contents

A. The commission shall formulate and the board of supervisors shall adopt or readopt a long-term comprehensive plan for the development of the area of jurisdiction in the manner prescribed by this article. The comprehensive plan, with the accompanying maps, plats, charts and descriptive matter, shall show the commission's recommendations for the development of the area of jurisdiction. The comprehensive plan shall be made with the general purpose of guiding and accomplishing a coordinated, adjusted and harmonious development of the area of jurisdiction pursuant to the present and future needs of the county.  The comprehensive plan shall be developed so as to conserve the natural resources of the county, to ensure efficient expenditure of public monies and to promote the health, safety, convenience and general welfare of the public. The comprehensive plan may include studies and recommendations relative to the location, character and extent of highways, railroads, bus and other transportation routes, bicycle facilities, bridges, public buildings, public services, schools, parks, open space, housing quality, variety and affordability, parkways, hiking and riding trails, airports, forests, wildlife areas, dams, projects affecting conservation of natural resources, air quality, water quality and floodplain zoning. In the preparation of the comprehensive plan, the commission shall make surveys and studies of the present conditions and prospective future growth of the area of the jurisdiction. The comprehensive plan shall be a public record, but its purpose and effect shall be primarily as an aid to the county planning and zoning commission and to the board of supervisors in the performance of their duties. The comprehensive plan shall include provisions that identify changes or modifications that constitute amendments and major amendments to the plan.

B. In addition to the other matters that are required or authorized under this section and this article, for counties with a population of more than one hundred twenty-five thousand persons, the comprehensive plan shall include, and for other counties the comprehensive plan may include:

1. Planning for land use that designates the proposed general distribution and location and extent of uses of the land for housing, business, industry, agriculture, recreation, education, public buildings and grounds, open space and other categories of public and private uses of land appropriate to the county.  The land use plan shall include:

(a) A statement of the standards of population density and building intensity recommended for the various land use categories covered by the plan.

(b) Specific programs and policies that the county may use to promote compact form development activity and locations where those development patterns should be encouraged.

(c) Consideration of air quality and access to incident solar energy for all general categories of land use.

(d) Policies that address maintaining a broad variety of land uses, including the range of uses existing in the county at the time the plan is adopted, readopted or amended.

(e) Currently identified sources of aggregates from maps that are available from state agencies, information from the Arizona geological survey on how to locate existing mines, consideration of existing mining operations and suitable geologic resources, policies to preserve currently identified aggregates sufficient for future development and policies to avoid incompatible land uses, except that this subdivision shall not be construed to affect any permitted underground storage facility or limit any person's right to obtain a permit for an underground storage facility pursuant to title 45, chapter 3.1.

2. Planning for circulation consisting of the general location and extent of existing and proposed freeways, arterial and collector streets, bicycle routes and any other modes of transportation as may be appropriate, all correlated with the land use plan under paragraph 1 of this subsection.

3. Planning for water resources that addresses:

(a) The known legally and physically available surface water, groundwater and effluent supplies.

(b) The demand for water that will result from future growth projected in the comprehensive plan, added to existing uses.

(c) An analysis of how the demand for water that will result from future growth projected in the comprehensive plan will be served by the water supplies identified in subdivision (a) of this paragraph or a plan to obtain additional necessary water supplies.

4. Planning for energy use that:

(a) Encourages and provides incentives for efficient use of energy.

(b) Identifies policies and practices for greater use of renewable energy.

C. In addition to the other matters that are required or authorized under this section and this article, for counties with a population of more than two hundred thousand persons, the comprehensive plan shall include, and for other counties the comprehensive plan may include:

1. Planning for open space acquisition and preservation. The open space plan shall include:

(a) A comprehensive inventory of open space areas, recreational resources and designations of access points to open space areas and resources.

(b) An analysis of forecasted needs, policies for managing and protecting open space areas and resources and implementation strategies to acquire additional open space areas and further establish recreational resources.

(c) Policies and implementation strategies designed to promote a regional system of integrated open space and recreational resources and a consideration of any existing regional open space plan.

2. Planning for growth areas, specifically identifying those areas, if any, that are particularly suitable for planned multimodal transportation and infrastructure expansion and improvements designed to support a planned concentration of a variety of uses, such as residential, office, commercial, tourism and industrial uses.  The mixed use planning shall include policies and implementation strategies that are designed to:

(a) Make automobile, transit and other multimodal circulation more efficient, make infrastructure expansion more economical and provide for a rational pattern of land development.

(b) Conserve significant natural resources and open areas in the growth area and coordinate their location to similar areas outside the growth area's boundaries.

(c) Promote the public and private construction of timely and financially sound infrastructure expansion through the use of infrastructure funding and financing planning that is coordinated with development activity.

3. An environmental planning element that contains analyses, policies and strategies to address anticipated effects, if any, of plan elements on air quality, water quality and natural resources associated with proposed development under the comprehensive plan.  The policies and strategies to be developed under this element shall be designed to have countywide applicability and shall not require the production of an additional environmental impact statement or similar analysis beyond the requirements of state and federal law.

4. A cost of development element that identifies policies and strategies that the county will use to require development to pay its fair share toward the cost of additional public facility needs generated by new development, with appropriate exceptions when in the public interest.  This element shall include:

(a) A component that identifies various mechanisms that are allowed by law and that can be used to fund and finance additional public services necessary to serve the development, including bonding, special taxing districts, development fees, in lieu fees and facility construction, dedications and privatization.

(b) A component that identifies policies to ensure that any mechanisms that are adopted by the county under this element result in a beneficial use to the development, bear a reasonable relationship to the burden imposed on the county to provide additional necessary public facilities to the development and otherwise are imposed pursuant to law.

D. The water resources element of the comprehensive plan does not require:

1. New independent hydrogeologic studies.

2. The county to be a water service provider.

E. In applying an open space element or a growth element of a comprehensive plan, a county shall not designate private or state land as open space, recreation, conservation or agriculture unless the county receives the written consent of the landowner or provides an alternative, economically viable designation in the comprehensive plan or zoning ordinance, allowing at least one residential dwelling per acre. If the landowner is the prevailing party in any action brought to enforce this subsection, a court shall award fees and other expenses to the landowner. Each county shall incorporate this subsection into its comprehensive plan and provide a process for a landowner to resolve discrepancies relating to this subsection.

F. The policies and strategies to be developed under these elements shall be designed to have regional applicability.

G. For counties with territory in the vicinity of a military airport or ancillary military facility as defined in section 28-8461, the commission shall also consider military airport or ancillary military facility operations and shall identify the boundaries of any high noise or accident potential zone as defined in section 28-8461 in its comprehensive plan for purposes of planning land uses in the high noise or accident potential zone that are compatible with the operation of the military airport or ancillary military facility pursuant to section 28-8481, subsection J.