Several of the projects and studies completed by the Planning and Performance Improvement Department have been recognized by regional, state, and national organizations for their innovation and excellence. A list of recent awards presented to the Department is as follows:
Performance Improvement AwardsElectronic Content Management (ECM) System Evaluation
Ottawa County's Electronic Content Management (ECM) System Evaluation earned a 2011 NACo Achievement Award. The ECM System Evaluation is the first full-scale, comprehensive study that verifies, through time-analysis, the actual time and material savings from using an ECM system to process court documents, as well as the resulting cost-savings. The study is being used to justify the need for legislative changes at the state-level that would encourage greater utilization of the technology, thereby further reducing labor and material cost. The award was given in the category of County Administration and Management.
Planning Award for the Model Wind Energy Ordinance
Ottawa County’s Model Wind Energy Ordinance earned a 2009 NACo Achievement Award. This ordinance is unique in that it is one of the first in the nation to provide specific, size-appropriate zoning standards for small, medium, and large wind energy turbines. This model ordinance proactively assists local units of government with the promotion and regulation of wind turbines by providing a framework that local communities can draw from to set their own size-appropriate wind energy zoning standards.
Planning Award for the Integrated Road Salt Management Project
Ottawa County’s Integrated Road Salt Management Project received a NACo Achievement Award in 2008. Since the program was adopted over the winter of 2004-2005, the Ottawa County Road Commission implemented new snow and ice clearance techniques that successfully reduced salt use in “environmentally sensitive” areas by 75 percent. This project not only had a positive impact on the local environment, infrastructure, and agriculture, but also resulted in direct and indirect cost savings for the County.
Planning Awards for the Urban Smart Growth Demonstration Project
To date, Ottawa County's Urban Smart Growth Demonstration Project which is being implemented in the City of Hudsonville has earned six awards from State and National Associations. These awards are recognition of the Project’s innovative planning tools that have been developed for the City to improve the ability of local leaders to plan and manage future growth and development. The tools include an Architectural Design Elements Portfolio (2007), Downtown Master Plan (2007), Downtown Zoning Code (2011), and Citywide Master Plan (2015). A Citywide Zoning Code is currently in development. The Urban Smart Growth Project is designed to serve as a model for other urban communities that are working to enhance the vibrancy, livability, and aesthetic character of their respective cities.
The awards are as follows:
- 2008 Outstanding Planning Project Award from the Michigan Association of Planning (Hudsonville Architectural Design Elements Portfolio and Downtown Master Plan)
- 2008 Urban Design Award from the Grand Valley Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (Hudsonville Architectural Design Elements Portfolio and Downtown Master Plan)
- 2009 National Association of Counties Achievement Award (Hudsonville Architectural Design Elements Portfolio and Downtown Master Plan)
- 2011 National Association of Counties Achievement Award (Hudsonville Downtown Zoning Ordinance)
- 2015 Daniel Burnham Award for a Comprehensive Plan from the Michigan Association of Planning (Imagine Hudsonville 2030 Citywide Master Plan)
- 2016 National Association of Counties Achievement Award (Imagine Hudsonville 2030 Citywide Master Plan)
Health Data Book Award
Ottawa County's Health Data Book earned a 2014 NACo Achievement Award in the category of Civic Engagement and Public Information. The Book is comprised of nine chapters that contain 30 years of statistics involving an array of health and wellness indicators for Ottawa County residents. Health data from adjacent counties (i.e. Allegan, Kent, and Muskegon) as well as the State are also provided to compare health trends among residents both regionally and statewide. Additionally, longitudinal trends in data are provided to clearly illustrate how a particular illness or health-related condition has affected the County’s population throughout the years.
Environmental Data Book Award
Ottawa County's Environmental Data Book earned a 2011 NACo Achievement Award. The Environmental Data Book is a comprehensive, easy-to-use reference guide that contains an assortment of environmental-related data for Ottawa County. This unique, web-based resource synthesizes pertinent environmental facts and statistics into a single, convenient document that is easily accessible to the public. The award was given in the category of Civic Engagement and Public Information.