During a forum last week, the seven candidates for Anne Arundel county executive criticized the county's approval process for development, with most calling for an overhaul of the Department of Planning and Zoning to cut red tape and the time necessary to obtain permits.
A revision of land-use laws last year was intended to establish a more usable set of rules without the inconsistencies that hampered previous regulations and led to delays in the review process.
But representatives of the development community say that has had little practical effect because the department lacks enough planners to review the thousands of proposals they receive each year. Proposed developments that are held up because of strained public facilities, such as crowded schools, are not reviewed until the infrastructure is improved or the six-year deadline for the county to make those upgrades expires, they said.
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