ST. CLOUD -- Stearns County will spend $250,000 to update its comprehensive plan this year.

The board of commissioners has approved a contract with the planning and architecture firm of Hoisington Koegler Group of Minneapolis.

Angie Berg is the Stearns County Land Use Division Supervisor. She told commissioners Tuesday, by updating the comp plan, the board will have the most up-to-date information to guide their decisions moving forward.

The comp plan process will be more interactive through the use of a web portal, social media and getting out to events to gather input on issues.

Among the items expected to be included in the next comp plan are the impact solar farms have on tillable land, alternative housing for farm labor and secondary housing for an aging population, growth pressure in the rural St. Cloud metro area, rural non-farm businesses and shooting ranges.

The comp plan was last updated in 2008.

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