Zoning Ordinances

What Is Zoning?

In Michigan, land development regulation is a local responsibility. Individuals can have a great influence on the policies and regulations that affect their area.

Zoning is an important tool to bring about the orderly development of local community. Zoning is a public regulation of the use of land adopted to protect public health, safety, and welfare. A zoning ordinance will divide the community into differing districts (or zones), each of which permits certain uses of land according to specific standards.

Of the 93 units of general purpose government in the six-county area, 10 townships and 3 villages do not have any zoning regulations. A township, village, city or county is authorized to adopt a zoning ordinance by state statute. The local zoning administration is depicted on the map of the region:

Does your community’s Zoning Ordinance need to be updated?

The Michigan Legislature adopted P.A. 110 of 2006, the Michigan Zoning Enabling Act.  The statute is effective as of July 1, 2006.  This bill codifies the zoning enabling acts for cities, villages, townships, and counties.  This is a major change for zoning in Michigan.  The codification of the three acts into one act resulted process and procedure changes that every member of a zoning board, planning commission, zoning commission, zoning board of appeals and zoning administrator will need to know.

Michigan Zoning Enabling Act

Some of the major changes include:

  • Reorganization of all elements and the addition of new definitions
  • New public hearing notice requirements for all zoning activities
  • Phasing out zoning boards (not zoning boards of appeals)
  • Changes to use variance authority, standards and procedures
  • Elimination of state review of county zoning ordinances and amendments.
Click Here to find out why your community should have a Zoning Ordinance and what the typical structure of a Zoning Ordinance is.

CUPPAD staff can assist your community with the development of a Planning Commission Ordinance and Bylaws and updates to your existing Zoning Ordinance to ensure compliance with the MZEA.  For more information, please contact Michelle Dewitt.


The CUPPAD Region

Click the map below to pull up county-specific information and resources.