Creation and Authority
A regional planning organization is a multi-service entity within a state that delivers a variety of federal, state, and local programs. They provide planning and technical assistance to their member local governments. As such, they are accountable to local units of government, and effective partners for state and federal governments. Bay-Lake Regional Planning Commission is the regional planning organization serving Northeastern Wisconsin.
The Bay-Lake Regional Planning Commission (Bay-Lake RPC) is a multi-service entity within Wisconsin that delivers a variety of federal, state, and local programs. The Bay-Lake RPC is a public entity established similar to a municipality. We provide planning and technical assistance to member local governments in Northeast Wisconsin. As such, we are accountable to our local government members, and serve as effective partners for state and federal governments.
The Commission was created in 1972 by Governor Lucey at the request of seven county boards in the region under Wisconsin Statutes s. 66.945 (re-titled 66.0309) as the official area-wide planning agency for northeastern Wisconsin. In December 1973, Florence County joined the Commission, bringing the total number of member counties to eight. Section 66.0309 (8) (2) prescribes that the function of the regional planning commission shall be solely advisory to the local governments and local government officials comprising the region.
The Bay-Lake Region covers the counties of:
Which includes 185 units of government including:
- 8 counties
- 17 cities
- 40 villages
- 119 towns
- Oneida Nation of Wisconsin
The total area of the region is 5,433 square miles, or 9.7 percent of the area of the State of Wisconsin.
The region has over 400 miles of coastal shoreline along Lake Michigan and Green Bay, and contains 12 major watershed areas that drain into the waters of Green Bay and Lake Michigan.
The 2020 U.S. Census population of the eight county region was 604,157 persons, or 10.3 percent of the total population of the State of Wisconsin.
Regional Center of Excellence Recognition
The Bay-Lake Regional Planning Commission was recognized as a Regional Center of Excellence by the National Association of Regional Councils (NARC) in Washington, D.C. This recognition has been bestowed on the Commission because of its environmental corridor work. "We are excited to acknowledge the achievements of these distinguished regional planning organizations and provide additional funding to further their efforts," said NARC President Stephen Cassano, Selectman, Town of Manchester, CT. "The expertise of these regions in promoting green infrastructure and Landcare highlights the importance of working regionally on environmental issues."