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Master Plan: Open Space and Parks Planning Stakeholder Checklist

Successful collaboration must be broadly inclusive of all stakeholders who are affected by or care about the issue. Diversity and inclusion should be not only tolerated but sought. Stakeholders are those people and organizations who, if they were to reach agreement, could act together to achieve real results.

  1. What are the perspectives necessary to credibly and effectively define the issues and create solutions? Who are the people and organizations that speak for these perspectives?
  2. What are the interests that must be represented on order to reach agreements that can be implemented and who can speak for these interests?
  3. Who are the people, groups and organizations who are necessary to implement solutions, can block action and control resources?
  4. Who are the people who cause or are affected by the issues, and who will be affected by the solutions?
  5. Who are the people who, if they could reach agreement about problems and solutions, could generate the political and institutional will to create significant change?


Adapted from: "Collaborative Leadership: How Citizens and Civic Leaders Can Make a Difference". David D. Chrislip and Carl E. Larson, Jossey-bass, 1994.

Benton County's Goals and Policies

"A County's Goals and Policies are a detailed expression of its aspirations for the future and can be considered the heart of the Comprehensive Plan."

Taken from Benton County Comprehensive Plan, page 23.

Goal: A general statement of community aspirations and desired objectives indicating a broad social, economic, or physical state of conditions that the community officially agrees to strive to achieve in various ways, such as through the implementation of the Comprehensive Plan.

Policy: An officially adopted course or method of action intended to be followed to implement the community goals.


General Goal #1
Maximize the potential of Benton County as a thriving center for agriculture, business, and recreation, while maintaining and enhancing its livability.

General Goal #2
Provide, maintain, and enforce standards for development that will enhance public health and the maintenance of a high quality standard of living.

General Goal #3
Maximize public service efficiencies at the local level both through effective planning and management practices, and by exercising sound fiscal responsibility.


Land Use Goal #1
Support the long-term protection of agriculture in the County.

Land Use Goal #2
Plan for the orderly and efficient growth of commercial and industrial development in the County.

Land Use Goal #3
Plan for the orderly and efficient growth of residential development in the County.

Land Use Goal #4
Identify, protect, and preserve the County's high quality natural areas and open space.


  1. Identify major woodland tracts, wetland areas, steep slopes, historic sites and other sensitive environmental areas within the County.
  2. Develop a park and open space master plan that establishes policies and strategies for the long-term protection and recreational use of the County's natural areas.
  3. Control urban development so that it does not encroach upon identified natural areas.
  4. Protect scenic values by controlling billboards and regulating signs, auto junk yards, and other potentially unsightly land uses and practices.


Public Facilities Goal #1
Continue to maintain and improve all community facilities.

Public Facilities Goal #2
Work to achieve and equitable distribution of the cost of providing County services.

Public Facilities Goal #3
Maintain adequate active and passive open space to meet the needs of the community.


  1. Maintain and upgrade existing County park facilities in order to meet future needs.
  2. Ensure that there is a balance of active and passive park areas to serve the County by working with the Park Board and evaluating the need to develop and implement a Parks and Open Space Master Plan.
  3. Focus new park and open space areas in those locations identified for both natural beauty, and the existence of unique environmental, plant, animal, social, or historical features.
  4. Explore the development of nature walks and bicycle trails.
  5. Promote the sharing of recreational facilities among area communities.
  6. Continue to support funding for recreational and/or community education activities.


Environmental Goal #1
Promote environmental stewardship for the County's long-term environmental benefit.


  1. Explore the possibilities of working with agencies and individuals to promote and encourage wildlife preserves.
  2. Promote the proper use and application of chemicals throughout the County.
  3. Promote the proper enforcement of wetland mitigation legislation, and support individual landowners' efforts in re-establishing pre-existing wetlands by using the wetland banking system. Replacement wetlands should be located outside the same watershed only as a last resort.
  4. Cooperate with appropriate watershed management organizations to develop strategies for protecting Little Rock Lake, Mayhew Lake and the Mississippi River.
  5. Continue careful consideration and review of soil suitability for placing individual sewer treatment systems before issuing a permit.
  6. Continue to work to promote the recycling of hazardous waste in a cost-effective manner.