Institute for Engagement & Negotiation

Empowering communities to create shared solutions

Clients: State Government

Regulatory Negotiation and Consensus Building for Onsite Septic System Regulations

(2000) With facilitation by the IEN, a twenty-two member Advisory Committee met for six all-day meetings to discuss and debate how best to protect public health, minimize the need for remedial action, and reduce permitting delays for Virginia's onsite septic system permitting and inspection program. Following a charge by the General Assembly to privatize the onsite septic system program, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) had been grappling with the difficult issues associated with privatization of functions that required continued public oversight. The Committee developed a consensus... Continue reading →

Categorized as: 2000s, Consensus Building, Land, State Government,

Safety and Health in Facilitating a Transition (SHIFT)

(2013) Between July and November of 2013, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) convened a stakeholder group of 25 individuals representing nine interest groups to make recommendations for the future of its onsite septic program. The Safety and Health in Facilitating a Transition (SHIFT) process was planned through a collaborative effort involving the VDH, IEN as independent facilitator, and a six-person planning team representing diverse stakeholder interests. IEN began the process by conducting interviews with members of the committee, representing the following sectors: builders and... Continue reading →

Categorized as: 2010s, Consensus Building, Land, State Government,

Sustainable Fisheries

(2012) IEN facilitated a capacity building and partnership initiative with the Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and Maryland local governments.On the premise that healthy terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems can most successfully be achieved in partnership with local government, IEN led a process to address the greatest threat to Maryland's natural resources and the critical ecosystem support functions they provide, watershed use change. The goal to develop a pro-active approach to strategically target DNR assistance to protect the most ecologically valuable resources threatened... Continue reading →

Categorized as: 2010s, Consensus Building, Water, Local Government,State Government,

Community Solutions Training

(2007) The trainings assisted government officials in understanding the possibilities for using collaborative processes in community-wide disputes and public policy situations.  In addition, the trainings broadened the capacity of local mediators to facilitate public policy disputes and situations. Working with local mediation centers, the organizers from IEN invited to these regional trainings public officials, the business community, community nonprofits, and religious leaders from the region to participate in a half-day session designed for the public. IEN trained the mediators for a day... Continue reading →

Categorized as: 2010s, Training, People & Communities, Local Government,State Government,

Chesapeake Bay Roundtable: Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act

(1986-1987) IEN facilitated the Chesapeake Bay Land-Use Roundtable, an endeavor funded by the Virginia General Assembly and convened to develop consensus for a clear set of policies and programs to guide land use planning and development around the Bay. The recommendations resulting from the 18-month Roundtable served as a basis for the Chesapeake Bay Preservation Act. This work was the precursor to more than a dozen Bay-related projects for IEN and to its current work on coastal resilience in the Commonwealth.

Categorized as: 1980s, Consensus Building, Land, Water, State Government,

Virginia Department of Health: Waterworks Regulations

(2014) With planning beginning in January, a contract finalized in May, and five meetings held between August and November 2014, the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) Office of Drinking Water convened a stakeholder group of 31 individuals to make recommendations for updating drinking water regulations for the Commonwealth of Virginia. RAP members were selected by ODW. Membership represented diverse interests across the state, including local utilities, private providers, advocates for low-income housing, and others. The Waterworks Regulations Regulatory Advisory Panel (RAP) process was... Continue reading →

Categorized as: 2010s, Public Participation, Water, State Government,

Radiation Safety Advisory Committee

(2005) IEN facilitated a discussion between the members of the Radiation Safety Advisory Committee, appointed jointly by the governor and VDH, about the role and authority of the committee. Concerns included: Virginia becoming an agreement state to administer federal radiation program as well as the roles and responsiblitities of the committee and VDH as they work together on a range of radiation safety topics.

Categorized as: 2000s, Dialogue, Health & Food, State Government,

Governor Warner's Leadership Summit on Natural Resources

(2004) IEN worked with a stakeholder planning committee to design an invitation-only, high level stakeholder-based Governor's Summit. The Summit identified key issues that needed to be addressed in protecting Virginia's natural resources, as well as potential solutions and priorities for implementation in the years after the summit. Governors Leadership Summit Report    

Categorized as: 2000s, Strategic Planning, Water, Land, Energy, State Government,

Nutrient Management Planning Regulatory Advisory Committee

(2004) IEN facilitated a regulatory negotiation of a stakeholder advisory committee convened by the Department of Conservation and Recreation. The committee identified areas of agreement for new nutrient management regulations that will move away from N to P-based planning.

Categorized as: 2000s, Consensus Building, Land, State Government,

St. Michaels, (MD) Development Mediation

IEN mediated a dispute between the residents of St. Michaels, Maryland and developer Midland Real Estate Company concerning acceptible development density and good design. A committee composed of town representatives and the developers agreed on several points and created a final report for the Town Commisioners. Two members of the committee dissented from the final mediation consensus statement and the final report was never submitted to the Town Commissioners. The future of the proposed development remains unclear, but one can expect additional opposition and negotiation if the plan... Continue reading →

Categorized as: 2000s, Consensus Building, Land, State Government,

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