What is a General Plan?

A General Plan is a comprehensive, long-term guide to the Town’s future, setting forth a vision for Sahuarita to aspire to and providing goals and policies to help get us there.  A General Plan is a policy guideline adopted by resolution. It is not regulatory. Regulations, such as town code, are adopted by ordinance and are considered law. 

State law requires municipalities to adopt a General Plan every ten years and requires that the General Plan be ratified by the voters. Aspire 2035 was adopted and ratified in fiscal year 2017. Public input and consensus are critical components of General Plan adoption. General Plan adoption and major amendments to the General Plan require two public hearings with the Planning and Zoning Commission and a subsequent public hearing with the Town Council. Following Town Council adoption of a General Plan, voters accept or reject the Plan through the ratification process. This ratification process establishes public consensus on the Plan. 

The General Plan includes a series of Elements (or chapters), each with its own topic. Examples of Elements are the Land Use Element, the Growth Areas Element, and the Environmental Element. Each element has a list of goals, each with its own policies, and some of the elements also include maps, such as the Land Use Map.  

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1. Why didn’t the town just dismiss the application outright?
2. Has the town already made up its mind to approve this?
3. Why is this taking so long? UPDATED 12/4/2023
4. Why is the Town allowing Vulcan to provide their own studies?
5. If the town decides to approve this, can extra requirements be placed on Vulcan?
6. What is a General Plan?
7. How does the General Plan work in conjunction with the zoning code?
8. How does the Town determine compliance with the General Plan?
9. How can the Town consider approving this application when so many residents are against it?
10. How can this use be allowed when the purpose statement of the RH zone is “to preserve the character and encourage the orderly growth of rural areas in the town."
11. What about the single access to the site crossing the railroad? Isn’t Union Pacific concerned? What about fire access? UPDATED 11/8/2023
12. Why is the town not requiring an EIS?
13. Why doesn’t the town require a Regenerative Thermal Oxidizer (RTO) be installed to control plant emissions? UPDATED 11/13/2023
14. Traffic volumes – how will this affect my daily drive? Won’t this cause undue wear and tear on Old Nogales Highway? UPDATED 11/20/2023
15. Are the emissions going to make me sick?
16. Why can’t the town regulate environmental permits?
17. I heard that the Vulcan property is classified as vacant for tax purposes. Doesn’t this negate their claim that the sand and gravel operation is a legal nonconforming use? UPDATED 11/8/2023