In September 2014, the Pinellas Planning Council (PPC) board unified its membership with the Pinellas County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). Whit Blanton, FAICP, came on board in June 2015 as the Executive Director of the PPC and MPO.
The PPC provides a forum for representatives of Pinellas County’s 24 municipalities and the unincorporated county to address countywide land use issues. The 13 members provide policy advice and recommendations to the Board of County Commissioners, who are authorized by the county charter to act as the Countywide Planning Authority (CPA). The PPC was reconstituted in its current form in 1988 by a special act of the State Legislature (Chapter 88-464, Laws of Florida).
The Pinellas County MPO was established in 1977. The MPO is tasked with developing plans, policies and priorities that guide local decision making on transportation issues. The MPO seeks to improve transportation in the county for all principal modes of travel, including mass transit, walking and bicycling, as well as the automobile. Principal responsibilities include the development of a 20-year Long Range Transportation Plan, five-year Transportation Improvement Program, two-year Unified Planning Work Program and related transportation planning studies and projects.
Together, the PPC & MPO seek to integrate land use and transportation planning in Pinellas County. Efforts are currently underway to develop a branding and communications strategy for the PPC/MPO.