Planning Manager
Job Type


General Summary

The City of Pontiac is seeking a highly responsible and organized person to join the City’s management team. 

Under the direction of the Community Development Director, the Planning Manager will manage, coordinate, and oversee the functions, operations, staff, and activities of the Planning Division. The Planning Manager shall perform complex professional work in all phases of current and future planning. This position is responsible for the management, implementation, and coordination of planning programs, projects, and related components, including report writing, Ordinance updates and the supervision of a staff of planning professionals.

This is a hands-on management position that will work side by side with Building Safety, Code Enforcement, and Economic Development. The position serves as the staff coordinator for the Planning Commission, Zoning Board of Appeals, the Historic District Commission and various other commissions, committees, and boards.

A successful candidate will have the ability to establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with co-workers and the public during challenging situations, have excellent communication skills, be well organized, and bring fresh ideas to the team.  The city has a wide variety of residential, commercial, and industrial development with great opportunity for adaptive reuse and infill projects. 

Work is governed by broad instructions, objectives, and policies. Work requires the exercise of considerable initiative and independent analytical and evaluative judgment.

  Employee must maintain regular attendance. 


Essential Duties

Manages and supervises the Planning Division by directing personnel, recommending appropriate service, and staffing levels, hiring new personnel, implementing goals, objectives, policies and procedures. Articulate the expectations, goals, and objectives of the department to staff.

Assign work activities. Train and motivate Planning Division personnel, provide or coordinate staff training, review and evaluate work products,  work with employees to correct deficiencies, implement discipline and termination procedures. 

Ability to multi-task; supervise multiple projects and meet deadlines. Provide support to the front counter staff and identify and implement new businesses practices where needed. Provide support to the Community Development Director.

Generate staff reports and provide detailed presentations to the City Council, Zoning Board of Appeals, Historic District Commission and various other commissions, committees, and boards, as necessary.

Oversees current and future planning projects by gathering, analyzing, and presenting data, recommending planning actions, coordinating with City staff regarding development issues, reviewing and recommending proposed applications.

Facilitate neighborhood/community meetings whenever necessary. 

Prepares amendments to City Ordinances by gathering, analyzing, and presenting data, recommending planning actions, researching and compiling information on various Ordinances, recommending proposed amendments, preparing reports and conducting presentations. 

Review and manage high profile special projects such as the Master Plan Update, development of new Specific Plans or Overlay Districts, or other various development projects.

Supervise and perform planning activities such as, but not limited to, GIS updates, urban design, landscape architecture, parks and open space planning, reviewing zoning and development applications and advising management on policy issues.

Provides exceptional customer service by patiently and clearly providing information to residents and clients regarding development issues.  Provide a solutions-based approach.

Ability to understand and manage high-profile, sensitive, or controversial political situations. Strong mediation and problem-solving skills. Ability to exercise sound and independent judgment within general policy guidelines.

Works closely with county, state, and federal agencies, community groups, developers, and stakeholders to achieve the City's economic development, land use, transportation, and housing goals.

Prepares and manages performance measures for the Division; development and growth data related to applications, permits, customer service requests, and the like; project summaries and development status reports; and other informational requests as directed.


Prepare and administer budget. Prepare and authorize expenditures for the division budget, direct the forecast of additional funds needed for staffing, equipment, materials, and supplies.

Other duties as assigned.



Minimum Qualifications

Bachelor’s degree from an accredited four-year college or university in Urban Planning, Urban Design, Environmental Planning, Landscape Architecture, Architecture, or related field. Must have knowledge of principles and practices of municipal planning and pertinent federal, state, and local laws. Must be proficient in ArcGIS.

Five (5) or more years of progressively responsible experience in urban planning and development in a municipal or county jurisdiction, or a combination of public and private sector planning, with a focus in planning, zoning, site plan review and design, building design, project management, implementing land use regulations, and administering current land use plans including at least two (2) years of supervisory/management experience in planning and development.

American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP) certification is desirable.

Valid Michigan Driver's License or the ability to obtain one at time of hire