MCRPC Organization Profile
Updated January, 2011
To prepare at the request of the governing body, a comprehensive plan and to
conduct related studies and implementation activities.
Mission is specified in the Pennsylvania
Municipalities Planning Code, Act 247 of 1968 (as amended), Section 209.1.
The Planning Code is the law, which governs all planning commissions, zoning
& subdivision ordinances, and other land use controls.
MCRPC originated in 1952. At first it was the Shenango Valley Regional
Planning Commission and served only the seven municipalities of Sharon,
Farrell, Sharpsville, Wheatland, West Middlesex, Hickory (now Hermitage), and
South Pymatuning. Later the county and more municipalities sought membership.
In 1972, the commission was restructured combining the Shenango Valley
Regional Planning Commission with the Mercer County Planning and Zoning
Commission to form the present-day Mercer County Regional Planning Commission.
Today membership includes 39 of the county’s 48 municipalities plus the county
MCRPC is organized as a joint municipal planning commission in accord with
Article XI of the Planning Code as existed prior to the amendments of Act 67
of 2000 and grand-fathered by said act.
39 municipalities and the county are
voluntary members via an inter-governmental agreement.
Each local government member contributes
funds to support the organization according to a population-based formula
stated in the agreement.
Each local government member appoints at
least 2 representatives to the commission. The larger municipalities and the
county have additional representatives. One rep must be a governing body
member and one rep must be a local planning commissioner (preferred) or
at-large member. There are currently 84 seats on the commission.
The commission meets monthly (except for
June, July & August) on the 4th Tuesday, 7:30 PM at the Mercer County
Regional Planning Commission offices. All meetings are advertised and open
to the public.
Several working committees provide reviews/recommendations to the full
commission and carry out certain authorized tasks:
Executive – Consists of the 4 currents
officers (chairman, vice-chairman, secretary & treasurer) plus the immediate
past chairman – Represents the commission in carrying out policies and
programs and does organizational planning & development – Meets as desired.
Zoning & subdivision review – Reviews major
subdivision plans, requests for modifications to subdivision regulations,
and zoning map or text amendments – Meets each month on the 3rd Tuesday,
7:30 PM, at the MCRPC office.
Program Review – Reviews local community
plans, sewage facilities plans, grant applications, and other projects
needing review of the county planning commission – Meets as needed.
Finance & personnel – Helps prepare an
annual budget and makes recommendations on personnel hirings, firings &
salaries – Meets as needed.
Legislative – Reviews proposed legislation
and programs and prepares opinions, position statements, etc. for commission
consideration – Meets as needed.
Includes the following full-time positions:
- Executive Director – Daniel Gracenin
- Assistant Director – Carmen Reichard
- Senior Planner – Brian Barnhizer
- Senior Planner - Chris Conti
- Senior Planner – Lisa Holm
- Senior Planner – Matt Stewart
- Administrative Secretary – Evelyn Wike
- Part-time help is utilized for short-term
projects. College internships are regularly offered.
Office rented from Mercer County Regional Council of Governments at 2491
Highland Road, Hermitage, PA, 16148, phone 724-981-2412, fax 724-981-7677,
- 3,100 square feet partitioned into 5
individual offices/work areas, secretaries’ work area & foyer, shared large
& small conference rooms, and kitchen/library.
- Notable equipment includes:
- 9 PCs, 1 Laptop, HP Laser Jet 4000T
printer, HP Desk Jet 2600C printer, HP 500C plotter (A-E), GTCO Accutab
digitizer (36"x48"), HP scanner
- Xerox Workcentre 7132 Digital Copier
- Punching & binding equipment
- Manual drafting equipment/facilities
- Sharp laser plain paper fax machine
General budget profile:
Total 2010 budget is $1,024,261 profiled as follows:
- County & municipal support - 21%
- PennDOT planning - 14%
- CDBG administration - 12%
- Subdivision fees - 3%
- Special project grants - 25%
- Miscellaneous & beginning balance - 25%
- Personnel - 43%
- Travel & expense - 1%
- Printing & supplies - 1%
- Quarters & operations - 5%
- Equipment - 3%
- Consultant services - 26%
- Other & ending balance - 21%
The following list shows activities undertaken by the commission:
- Prepare long-range community plans, with
emphasis on the county comprehensive plan and multi-municipal comprehensive
plans, for member governments.
- Prepare plans and studies and provide staff
assistance for special projects or problems (housing rehab, downtown
revitalization, community and economic development projects, etc.).
- Prepare new or revised land use control
ordinances (zoning, subdivision & land development, floodplain management,
etc.) for member governments. Review and comment on all amendments to such
- Administer Mercer County subdivision & land
development ordinance – review and approve all subdivision plans in 36
municipalities covered by county ordinance. Review and comment on all
subdivision plans in municipalities with own ordinance.
- Prepare public highway and transit plans as
federally-designated Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). Assist
separate MPO coordinating committee in approval of long-range plan and
periodic transportation improvement programs (TIP’s) necessary for federal
funding of highway & transit projects.
- Work with the county’s lead economic
development agency and local IDCs to plan for and facilitate development of
reuse and new economic development projects.
- Administer Community Development Block
Grant Program for Mercer County, Greenville Borough, Pine Township and other
grantees when requested.
- Administer the Mercer County Affordable
Housing Fund and Brownfields for Housing grants. Solicit, review, and
recommend selection of eligible housing improvement projects.
- Prepare grant applications for a variety of
community improvement projects.
- Prepare research and studies of local
demographic/economic conditions to 1) support needs assessments and grant
applications by municipalities and agencies; 2) provide needed information
for marketing and prospective developers; and 3) fill public requests.
- Aid municipalities, agencies, local groups,
etc. in implementing community plans.
- Assign addresses and update street/address
database files for 911.
Mercer County Regional Planning Commission
2491 Highland Road, Hermitage, PA 16148