Twenty-four local elected officials from around the Huron River watershed joined HRWC’s virtual workshops last month. There, they gained insights for leading their communities to adopt policies and ordinances that protect drinking water and preserve natural areas.

Attendees discussed the connection between land use, natural areas, and water quality. They heard how local governments are key to allowing smart growth and development while protecting native landscapes and water quality. HRWC presented sample ordinances and policies for local governments to use as guidance within their own jurisdictions.

These and many other resources are available on our Change Makers page.

HRWC  has a long history of working with policy makers and local leaders to share strategies on best practices for protecting land and water. Already, these watershed communities are following some of the river-friendly policies Change Makers are working for:

  • Agricultural and natural areas protection millage programs in Webster, Scio, and Ann Arbor townships, the City of Ann Arbor, and Washtenaw County. Together they have protected over 18,200 acres of land.
  • Master plans that include natural area Green Infrastructure network information. Webster, Ann Arbor, Lyndon, Springfield, and other townships are using these to plan for development in concert with existing natural features.
  • Surface water protection overlay zoning passed in Unadilla, Green Oak, and Webster townships to protect creeks, lakes, and the river from polluted runoff coming from new development.

We cannot do this work alone, and we are always looking to partner with community members to activate their townships, cities, and counties. If you want to see your municipality on this list, get involved in Change Makers! Email me and let me know you want to get Change Maker alerts, tips, and opportunities.