Prepared for by decree


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           “A hundred years after we are gone and forgotten, those who never heard of
              us will be living with the results of our actions.” Oliver Wendell Holmes

The Payette Comprehensive Plan is the primary City document that sets out goals and policies
to guide and manage land uses within the City and the area of impact for the next five to ten
years. No less important, the Plan also expresses the quality of life that is desired by the
residents of Payette.
The Plan is the single statement of community consensus regarding the community’s future
growth and development. It is the Comprehensive Plan that serves as a single official document
essential for coordination between City officials, residents, and public agencies. Further, the
Plan is the tool that the City Council and Planning and Zoning Commission use in making
decisions, and it is the basis for the City of Payette’s subdivision and zoning ordinances. The
adopted Plan can be obtained at City Hall or on-line at:

      Comprehensive Plan - 2005
The 2005 Comprehensive Plan builds on the goals, policies, and information from the 1997
Comprehensive Plan. In the intervening eight years, new local, state, and national events have
shaped our views of our world and the ideal Payette community. The 2005 Plan should not be
viewed as a final statement of Payette’s future, but rather a statement at this time in the City’s
evolution. The Comprehensive Plan will continue to be the singular, most important document,
requiring full public participation in its continued use and future changes. Lead responsibility for
the Plan’s review and update rests with the Planning and Zoning Commission, which should
review the text and land use map annually and suggest recommendations to the City Council.

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                           City-wide Goals
Important City-wide mission statements identified in the 2005 Comprehensive Plan include:
     Economic Self-sufficiency – to foster the development of a City that sustains itself and
     Community Identity – to establish and reinforce a sense of community identity.
     Growth and Development – to provide for the planned, orderly, and responsible growth of
      the City and provide for a mixture of residential, office, commercial, light industrial, and
      public land uses.
     Adequate Public Services and Facilities – to ensure that adequate services and facilities
      are available for current and future residents in a fiscally responsible manner and under
      consistent standards.
     Open Space, Parks, Trails, Recreation, and Tourism – to provide parks, trails, and
      recreation facilities that take advantage of Payette’s special natural resources and offer
      active and passive recreation opportunities for City residents and guests.

                      Community Profile
The City of Payette is located in Payette County        “Payette” is named for Francois Payette, the
at the confluence of the Payette and Snake              good-hearted postmaster for the Hudson’s Bay
Rivers, approximately three miles north of              Company at Fort Boise, which was just upriver
Fruitland and ten miles south of Weiser (in             on the Snake. He was known as a generous
                                                        friend to Oregon-bound emigrants in the 1840s.1
Washington County) at an elevation of 2,150
In the 1800s, Payette was a panorama of sagebrush and bunch grass covering rolling hillsides.
The first white man to settle in the region was Francois Payette, a French Canadian, who came
from Quebec in 1812. In 1867, James Toombs established the first principal settlement, the
Payette Store, and from this small beginning a thriving town began to develop. A few years
later, Peter Pence brought the first cattle to the area, introduced hops to Payette, and grew
peaches, and built dams and irrigation ditches. A. B. Moss arrived in the valley in 1881. He
supplied ties to the Union Pacific Railroad and shipped the first fruit from the area in 1891. Thus
began the long history of Payette as an agricultural center. 2

In 1891, the City was incorporated and became the Payette County seat in 1917. Today,
Payette is home to 7,434 (2005) residents with anticipated growth to a thriving City of over
12,700 (2030).

    Bill Loftus, Idaho Handbook, February 1992 (page 157)
    “Payette, City Center Plan”, Planmakers, November 1985, page 4.

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             Vision Statement - 2005
                       “Vision is the art of seeing the invisible.” Jonathan Swift

                                      City of Payette Vision Statement
Payette is a community that celebrates its agricultural heritage and rural lifestyle, while promoting
responsible growth that improves the quality of life for all citizens. This will be accomplished by striving to
provide the necessary economic opportunities, community services, and amenities to ensure a healthy
and safe family environment for its residents.

Comprehensive Plan Overview
Planning is a basic function and power of local government. Further, successful communities
are those whose citizens and government representatives have charted a course for
development and are vigilant to their goals.
A Comprehensive Plan is the adopted public document that sets forth those goals to guide land
use and development decisions.
An effective Comprehensive Plan must:
   Consider the existing needs of the community.
   Look beyond pressing, current issues to provide a perspective on opportunities for the
   Illustrate a generalized pattern of future land uses.
   Serve as a policy guide in updating the City’s land use regulations.
   Establish the foundation for new programs.

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In the State of Idaho, a City has the legal authority to create and adopt a Comprehensive Plan for the
physical development of the municipality, pursuant to The Idaho Local Land Use Planning Act of 1975
(Idaho Code 67-6502). The Plan is an official public document adopted by the City Council. The Plan
indicates the general way in which the City should develop in the next 20 years.
The purpose of the Idaho Local Land Use Planning Act and community planning is to promote the
health, safety, and general welfare of the people of the State of Idaho as follows:
(a) To protect property rights and enhance property values while making accommodations for other
    necessary types of development such as low-cost housing and mobile home parks.
(b) To ensure that adequate public facilities and services are provided to the people at reasonable cost.
(c) To ensure that the economies of the state and localities are protected and enhanced.
(d) To ensure that the important environmental features of the state and localities are protected and
(e) To encourage the protection of prime agricultural, forestry, and mining lands for production of food,
    fiber, and minerals.
(f) To encourage urban and urban-type development within incorporated Cities.
(g) To avoid undue concentration of population and overcrowding of land.
(h) To ensure that the development of land is commensurate with the physical characteristics of the
(i) To protect life and property in areas subject to natural hazards and disasters.
(j) To protect fish, wildlife, and recreation resources.
(k) To avoid undue water and air pollution.
(l) To allow local school districts to participate in the community planning and development process so
    as to address public school needs and impact on an ongoing basis.

State-required Components
The Idaho Local Land Use Planning Act requires that a Comprehensive Plan consider “previous
and existing conditions, trends, desirable goals, and objectives or desirable future situations for
each planning component.”
The state-required components of a Plan as listed in Idaho Code 67-6508 include:
   Property Rights                                           School Facilities and Transportation
   Population                                                Community Design
   Economic Development                                      Special Areas or Sites and Recreation
   Land Use                                                  Hazardous Areas
   Natural Resources                                         Housing
   Public Services, Facilities, and Utilities                Implementation
   Transportation

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Plan Amendments
State law acknowledges that Comprehensive Plans are dynamic documents; therefore, allows
the text to be updated at any time and the land use map to be amended every six months
(Idaho Code 67-6509).
Any person may petition the planning commission for a Plan amendment at any time. The
planning commission may then recommend amendments to the land use map to the City
Council only once every six months; and amendments to the text at any time.

                        Planning Process
Advisory Committee
The strength of the Plan rests clearly in the      In September of 2004, the City of Payette
assembly of community members who served as        initiated the update to the 1997
citizen advisors on the Advisory Committee.        Comprehensive Plan. All interested residents,
See the Acknowledgments page at the beginning of   City staff, and business owners were offered
this report for a complete listing of Advisory     the opportunity to serve on the Advisory
Committee members.                                 Committee. The Advisory Committee was
                                                   asked to reflect on community issues and
priorities and offer recommendations. The
group met in five facilitated planning
workshops to discuss the many opportunities
and challenges in Payette’s future. Specialists
in downtown revitalization, Payette City staff,
and local experts provided information and
discussion points for the Committee.
The Advisory Committee formulated the
Comprehensive Plan in a series of workshops
   Understanding City operations and budgets.
   Defining a vision statement.
   Evaluating land use alternatives.
   Identifying key community development elements.
   Developing goals, policies, and action strategies.
Citizen involvement drove each of these phases and will
be integral to the Plan’s successful execution.

Payette High School

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In early 2005, during the planning process, the Payette High School Council was asked to
evaluate what amenities and services would make their City more livable. Working with Mayor
Heleker, the group of students recorded a list of expected and unexpected wishes for their town
including a theme park, family recreation center, swimming pool improvements, teen club, new
restaurants, and downtown renovation. These excellent observations have been incorporated
into the plan.

                       Plan Organization
The following sections contain a general discussion of current and future City issues and
conditions, followed by specific goals, policies, and action steps or strategies to achieve the
goals. The nature of the document requires coordination between overlapping subject areas; as
such, policies may be referenced in more than one section.
   Goals – are the ideals to be pursued by the City of Payette. They relate to the community’s
    Vision Statement and provide the basic organization and direction for the Plan’s policies and
    action strategies.
   Policies – are a definite course of action to be taken by the City in obtaining its goals. They
    provide guidance for elected and appointed community leaders, staff, and administrators in
    making decisions about development and investments in the community.
   Action Strategies – are specific measures to be taken to implement the policies. A chart at
    the end of each chapter suggests responsible parties, costs, and a timeframe for the action
    to be completed. Because priorities will change from year-to-year, City officials and staff
    should continually evaluate and update the action strategies.

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