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County planner excited to take city post

Kitsap County Senior Planner James Weaver is excited to take the reins over at the Port Orchard City Hall with the newly titled City Development Director position.

Weaver was asked to take over when Planning Director JoAnne Long-Woods resigned earlier this month. Mayor Lary Coppola has since changed the scope of the position, hoping to streamline application processes and improve communication between departments.

“The biggest problem we had is the departments weren’t talking to each other,” he said. “Anybody filing a permit application was caught in the middle of this inefficiency. It just wasn’t fair to anybody. What we’re going to put in place will eliminate that situation.”

Weaver will start at the city Feb. 4

“I’m very excited about it,” he said. “I think it’s a great opportunity and it’s an exciting time to be involved.”

As city development director, Weaver will oversee all permitting aspects, allowing Public Works Director Maher Abed to focus mainly on infrastructure.

“Having them all under one division provides much more efficient government service,” Weaver said.

Weaver enters city hall following Cop-pola’s stated goals to spur economic dev-elopment in the area. Along with overseeing those plans, he’ll also work on the 10-year revision to the comprehensive plan.

Weaver noted that the city is late on its required 10-year revision. The last major update to the plan occurred in 1994.

“A major 10-year update is required every 10 years,” Weaver noted humorously. “That’s what we’re catching up on.”

Weaver has worked in the city planning field in King and Kitsap counties and San Diego. He worked on the Department of Development and Environmental Servi-

ces in King County, and the City of San Diego Planning and Development Review.

After working at the Physical Planning Office at the University of California, San Diego, he came to Kitsap County, where he has worked as a Senior Planner since 2004.

He comes with American Institute of

Certified Planners (AICP) and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Development (LEED) accreditation.

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