Robert O. Scott, Rob, is retiring after seven years as the part-time planning director for North Ogden City. Rob describes his job as “part-time job with full-time responsibilities.” Working for North Ogden City is the culmination of a 47-year planning career.
Rob’s preparation for entering the planning field included obtaining a bachelor’s degree from BYU and a Graduate Certificate in Public Administration from the U. of U. As part of his graduate work, he served an internship with the Davis County Planning Department before being hired full time. He subsequently worked in Sandy City, Ogden City, Medford, Oregon, and Weber County as a planning director. He was born in Salt Lake City and was raised in Billings, Montana. His parents moved to Bountiful, Utah where Rob completed high school. He interrupted his undergraduate work at BYU to serve an LDS mission to the Eastern Atlantic States. After graduation from BYU, he joined the Air Force and spent two years on active duty and five years in the reserves. Rob is married and has four children and five grandchildren.
Rob’s time with North Ogden City has been eventful, with his first assignment to lead the 2014-15 General Plan update project. This was the first update of the General Plan since 2005. He obtained a land use grant to fund the update. This grant funded a consultant team. The General Plan process was completed while working with the Planning Commission, City Council, and citizens to identify goals and polices for North Ogden’s future.
Rob’s work with North Ogden began with him and a part-time planning assistant. With expanding demands to process growing numbers of planning related applications, a full-time planner and a planning assistant were added. Rob was able to obtain additional assistance with interns.
He either wrote or collaborated with the preparation of 91 amendments to the zoning and subdivision ordinances. The existing zoning and subdivision ordinances had a complete review in 2002. Planning staff is currently working with a consultant to comprehensively review the zoning and subdivision ordinances that will result in a new Land Use Code. Rob is currently wrapping up a sensitive lands ordinance to identify safety design standards for the development on North Ogden’s bench area. A new civic zone was created to provide master plans and sensible standards for city-owned properties.
Rob’s focus has been on customer service. His motto is, “continuous improvement – customer service.” He organized an application tracking system to ensure that accurate records are kept for development applications. He established a new template for staff reports going to the planning commission and city council. Working with the other professionals in North Ogden City government has fostered positive relationships that have resulted in coordinated efforts, e.g., the establishment of streetscape standards.
It has been particularly gratifying for Rob to see planning projects come to fruition and to work with people who care about their community during his work in local government.
Rob is a charter member of the American Institute of Certified Planners. He has been involved in the local Utah Chapter, American Planning Association, and has served in leadership positions; he has also volunteered for speaking and training opportunities.
Rob’s goal has been to establish a planning program that the next planning director can build upon and take to a new level. It has been fulfilling and rewarding working in North Ogden and seeing the city position itself for the future.