June 3, 2020 – El Paso County’s Planning and Community Development Department has been recognized with an Achievement Award from the National Association of Counties (NACo). The awards honor innovative, effective county government programs that strengthen services for residents. El Paso County Planning and Community Development won its 2020 NACo Achievement Award in the Planning Category for its Water Master Plan. This is the second award for the El Paso County Water Master Plan, which also won an award from the American Planning Association (Colorado Chapter) in 2019.

NACo notified the Planning Department of the award Wednesday morning, to much excitement of Planning Department leadership and staff, and all those who worked extensively on the Water Master Plan.

“It is a great honor for El Paso County to be recognized by the National Association of Counties for our Water Master Plan. El Paso County has developed into a national leader in the area of planning for growth and development, particularly with respect to potential impacts to our most important natural resource, water,” said El Paso County Planning and Community Development Executive Director, Craig Dossey. “The Water Master Plan provides guidance that is intended to inform future land use decisions, to help ensure that we as a community are able to balance the efficient use of our limited water supplies with the water needs of the current and future residents of our great County.”

The El Paso County Water Master Plan is innovative, informative, relevant, and dynamic. Few, if any Colorado counties, with such a significant population or diversity of water suppliers, have developed a Water Master Plan that addresses growth and community sustainability at this level. The Water Master Plan examines the current state of water resources in El Paso County and provides an overview of county water supply needs to sustain the current population and accommodate growth through the year 2060. The Water Master Plan is a tool used to evaluate development proposals and guide county officials, staff, citizens and water providers as our region experiences significant growth in the coming years. The top priority of the plan is to facilitate responsible development, and protect one of our most precious resources, so that current and future residents can thrive in El Paso County for decades to come.

You can find the full Water Master Plan here.

The Water Master Plan is an element of the overall County Master Plan, which is currently being developed. Starting this week, there are three new opportunities for the public to participate in the Master Plan development process and virtually provide feedback on the County Master Plan, via interactive online activities. For those who’d like to participate, please visit the project website: ElPaso.HLPlanning.com.