Seats Available on Columbia County Planning Commission

Panel Reviews and Advises on Planning Matters

Columbia County is seeking multiple qualified citizens to serve on the county’s Planning Commission. The commission serves in an advisory role to the county’s Board of Commissioners on comprehensive planning and land use issues within the county.

The seven-member commission is made up of residents who live in various locations throughout the county. “I want to personally invite county residents to apply for the commission's vacant seats," says Columbia County's Planning Manager, Hayden Richardson. "Even though the commission meets in St. Helens, I hope to see applicants from Rainier, Clatskanie, Mist, and Vernonia. The Planning Commission operates best when all of the county's geographic regions are represented."

In coordination with the county’s Director of Planning, the commission makes recommendations on amendments to the county’s long-range Comprehensive Plan, Zoning, and Subdivision and Partitioning ordinances, and reviews land use applications for compliance with applicable county ordinances, county Comprehensive Plan, and Statewide Planning rules.

The commission works to balance livability, economic development, and environmental protection within Columbia County. It works to assure that development is orderly, sustainable, and efficient.

Successful candidates will be chosen by the Board of Commissioners. The Board will balance the commission to assure that no more than two members are engaged principally in real estate for profit and that no more than two members currently work in the same kind of occupation, business, trade, or profession.

The Board of Commissioners is seeking Columbia County citizens with varied backgrounds and perspectives on development within the County. Applicants must live in Columbia County, be registered to vote, and may not be employees, officers, or agents of the county.

Currently, the Planning Commission meets on the first Monday of most months at 6:30 pm at the County Courthouse in St Helens. The commission meets on the first and third Monday of the month at 6:30 pm during the months of June, July, and August. Meetings are open to the public. Terms, which are staggered to allow for adequate transitioning, are four years.

The application form can be filled out online at or at the County Courthouse, located at 230 Strand St. in St. Helens.

Please contact Hayden Richardson at or (503) 397-1501 for more information.

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