A growth policy is meant to guide and help manage change for the benefit of residents. While the statutory requirements for a growth policy focus primarily on land use, the document should also address economic development, housing needs, local services, infrastructure, the natural environment, and other issues of importance to the community.
There are questions about how to provide additional services and maintain or improve the quality of life that residents have come to appreciate and depend on. Planning is important. Most residents want a common vision for the future that reflects their values. A growth policy is one means to accomplish that vision. Ultimately, writing a growth policy should result in commonly accepted goals and objectives that will help create and maintain the type of community that residents want to live, work, and play in.
Additionally, a growth policy will provide a consistent framework for local government to make decisions and reduce ambiguity and inconsistency in the decision-making process. (Adopted from Montana’s Growth Policy Resource Book, p.1)