Do you think single-wide mobile homes in unincorporated Wasco County should be allowed in all residential zones? Or only as temporary dwellings? What about limited zones like farm zones? That’s the “question of the month” found at www.Wasco2040, a website explaining—and seeking input—on ongoing revision to the county’s comprehensive plan.

There are more questions to be answered in an online survey, and next week the county will hold a series of public meetings to gather more information.

These meetings are a boots-on-the-ground, grass-roots opportunity for county residents to weigh in on a complex set of solutions designed to address issues identified during previous public interactions; problems regarding water availability, residential land and housing, farm succession, urban expansion and specialty or niche farming opportunities, to name a few.

The proposed solutions—planners have mapped out six—will impact the quality of life for residents and the development rights of property owners in unincorporated areas of the county for the next 20 years.

Minor changes to the plan were presented in 2018, and this month, planners are presenting several possible land use planning solutions to address housing concerns and desires for more flexible minimum parcel  sizes.

Beginning next week, Wasco County planning staff will be hitting the road to gather additional input, hosting four public meetings.

“During the past year staff has been working to modernize our Comprehensive Plan,” explained Mike Davis, chair of the Wasco County Planning Commission. “We are now reaching a very important stage in this program that can and will affect all citizens in Wasco County.”

Citizens are being given the opportunity to guide how growth will take place in Wasco County over the next 20 years: Just how valuable that input will be hinges on how willing Wasco County residents are to get informed, attend, speak out—and help shape our future.

A comprehensive explanation of the Comprehensive Plan can be found at Each meeting will begin with a staff presentation, followed by small group discussion and exercises.

—Mark Gibson is editor of The Dalles Chronicle.

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