Planning Commission

Purpose and Typical Duties

The Planning Commission serves as the advisor to the Board of Supervisors in matters of planning and zoning by preparing and recommending plans, ordinances, capital improvement programs and similar documents, and reviewing development proposals.  Most commonly, the work of the Planning Commission involves review and recommendation on rezoning, special use permits and subdivision applications, plan review and development, and ordinance review and development.  

Length of Term

Terms are staggered, four years in length and begin on February 1st.

Term Limitations

Members may serve for only two consecutive terms unless the Board of Supervisors determines that unusual circumstances exist such that this policy should be waived.

Number of Members

Not less than five nor more than fifteen members, appointed by the Board of Supervisors. All members must be residents of Madison County and qualified by knowledge and experience to make decisions on questions of community growth and development. At least one-half of the members must be owners of real property.

One member of the commission may be a member of the Board of Supervisors and one member may be an employee of the Madison County administration. The term of each of these two members shall be coextensive with the term of office to which he has been elected or appointed, unless Board of Supervisors, at the first regular meeting each year, appoints others to serve as their representatives.

Meeting Time and Place

Joint Meeting with the Board of Supervisors is the first Wednesday of the month at 7:00 PM. 

Planning Commission's monthly workshop meeting is on the third Wednesday of each month at 6:30 PM.    

All meetings take place at the Administration Building located at 414 N. Main Street in Madison, VA. Dates and times are subject to cancelation or adjustment depending on matters before the Commission including applications received.

Member Qualification

All members shall be residents of the Madison County, qualified by knowledge and experience to make decisions on questions of community growth and development; provided, that at least one-half of the members so appointed shall be owners of real property.

Before entering upon the duties of a member of the commission, an appointee shall not be eligible to be seated until an oath of office is administered by the Clerk of the Circuit Court or other qualified official.


Composition of planning commission and appointment of members, Code of Virginia, § 15.2-2212.

Appointment Process

Members are appointed by the Board of Supervisors.


$40/member/meeting attended.


Name:Appointment Expires:Email:
Stephen Carpenter, Chair01/31/2027Email Stephen Carpenter
Fay Utz, Vice-Chair01/31/2024Email Fay Utz
Nathan Cowan, Secretary01/31/2027Email Nathan Cowan
Michael Snider01/31/2024Email Michael Snider
James Smith01/31/2024Email Jim Smith
Pete Elliott01/31/2025Email Pete Elliott
James Graves III01/31/2026Email James Graves

Supporting Documents