Due to staffing shortages, Huntsville’s planning department is expected to grind to a halt in March and no applications will be processed, according to Huntsville Mayor Karin Terziano.
She delivered the news at Huntsville Council’s February 22 meeting and said Huntsville’s planning committee would also not meet in March as incoming planning applications would likely not be processed until April.
The staff shortage comes on the heels of an announcement made at Huntsville’s planning committee meeting this month that planner Curtis Syvret would be leaving the Town for a position at the District of Muskoka. Committee members as well as manager of planning Richard Clark wished Syvret good luck and said he would be missed.
With the director of planning, Kirstin Maxwell, involved in a Local Planning Appeal Tribunal hearing, Clark has been left to look after the department on his own, noted Terziano. Two positions are expected to be filled as soon as possible—one for a leave of absence.
Terziano reiterated the department is working on solving its staffing issues as soon as possible but planning applications submitted in March will not be processed until April. “”As those applications come in, the people are being notified that their applications will be going to April so if council hears complaints or concerns from people, there’s not much we can do about it. When the prefect storm arrives—all at the same time—there’s not much we can do,” she said. “So as soon as we’re back up to full staff… we’ll get all of those applications processed in April.”
Maxwell said she hopes members of the public are understanding. “We are working on it,” she assured.
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