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MSU Extension Zoning Administrator Certificate Program

February 6-7, 2020

Bay Harbor Village Hotel & Conference Center
4000 Main St.
Bay Harbor, MI 49770

Zoning Administrators are among the most important local officials. They are the front line for new development and redevelopment in a community. How well they do, or do not do, their job has a great impact on the future of their community.

Most Zoning Administrators have had no formal training. They learned on the job and may not have uniform skills, but courts expect them to know the rudiments of law as it relates to zoning administration. The MSU Extension Zoning Administrator Certificate (ZAC) Program teaches zoning administrators how to prevent mistakes that lead to expensive lawsuits, while improving their day-to-day effectiveness.

Since 2009, the MSU Extension Zoning Administrator Certificate Program has taught zoning administration techniques in ways that reduce legal risks to the zoning administrator and their community. It is the ONLY such program in the state!

The 2020 MSU Extension Zoning Administrator Certificate Program will be held Feb. 6 & 7, at the Bay Harbor Village Hotel and Conference Center in Bay Harbor, MI. With just 60 seats available, register right away!

The 2020 Zoning Administrator Certificate Program includes the delivery of two of the eight modules via Zoom video conference. One of the modules will be delivered Jan. 14, from 9 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and the second delivered Jan. 22, from 1:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern time. Participation in both modules is required prior to the Feb. 6-7 program. The webinars will be recorded and viewing the recordings will only be permitted as an exception upon request.

WHO SHOULD ATTEND: New and current zoning administrators, private consultants, and county planners or state agency staff who consult with local zoning administrators

TOPICS COVERED: Job Description; Responsibilities and Basic Ethics; Legal Issues; Reviewing Applications: Common Procedures and Use of Forms; Reviewing Plot Plans and Site Plans; Inspections and Violations; Preparing Files; Reports and Record Keeping; Interactions with other Professionals and Agencies, and Departmental Duties; Customer Service and Counter Behavior

PREREQUISITES: To establish a common starting point in local planning and zoning knowledge, all registrants must have completed the MSU Extension Citizen Planner Program or have the AICP credential before starting the ZAC program.

REIMBURSEMENT SCHOLARSHIPS: A grant program, Risk Reduction Grant Program (RRGP), may be available from your community’s liability insurance provider. Michigan Township Participating Plan offers to its municipal members one per community, which covers the complete registration reimbursement with program completion, for participation in the Citizen Planner Program and a portion of the Zoning Administrator Certificate program fees. For more information, please visit us on the web at For member governments of the Michigan Municipal Risk Management Authority (MMRMA), contact Cara Kowal at 800-243-1324 for more information regarding grants for education and training through the Risk Avoidance Program (RAP). For municipalities obtaining insurance through Nickel & Saph, Inc. Insurance Agency contact Stephen R. Saph, Jr. at 586-463-4573 or Contact your local community liability risk insurance carrier to see if similar grants or reimbursement scholarships are available.

FEE: $700 Payment must be received by Dec. 20, 2019 or registration will be cancelled. Lodging is not included - Please contact Bay Harbor Village Hotel and mention the ZAC Program.

Cancellations received after December 20, 2019 will be assessed a $150 cancellation fee.


Michigan State University is committed to providing equal opportunity for participation in all programs, services and activities. Accommodations for persons with disabilities may be requested by contacting the event contact two weeks prior to the start of the event. Requests received after this date will be honored whenever possible.

Contact Information

For more information, please contact Janean Danca, ZAC Program Coordinator, at or 269-657-8213.