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Regulatory and Permitting Information Desktop Toolkit

Michigan Land Use Planning (1-MI-a)

Michigan delegates land use planning to local planning commissions.

Land Use Planning Process

1-MI-a.1 – Land Use Planning Delegated to Municipalities and Counties

In Michigan, land use planning is primarily delegated to local (e.g., county, township, city, and village) planning commissions. Michigan Planning Enabling Act. Under the Michigan Planning Enabling Act, a local planning commission must implement a master plan (land use plan) to guide development within the planning jurisdiction. MCL § 125.3831.

Zoning is also largely delegated to local authorities. Under the Michigan Zoning Enabling Act, zoning ordinances must be based upon plans designed to, among other things, promote public health, safety, and general welfare and to encourage the use of lands in accordance with their character and adaptability. MCL § 125.3203. Local units of government may enact zoning ordinances within their zoning jurisdiction to regulate the use of land and structures to meet the needs of the state’s citizens. MCL § 125.3201.

Nevertheless, all zoning regulations are subject to the Michigan Electric Transmission Line Certification Act, which regulates the location and construction of certain electric transmission lines. MCL § 125.3205(a). Accordingly, in Michigan, electricity transmission siting falls largely to the Michigan Public Service Commission, although local units of government and their officials are given precedence under certain circumstances. Michigan Electric Transmission Line Certification Act.


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