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Oklahoma Land Use Planning (1-OK-a)

In Oklahoma, land use planning is delegated to municipal and county governments. These local governments may create comprehensive land use plans and may choose to join a joint planning commission to administer and harmonize local land use plans. OK. Stat. Ann. §11-45-101; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-863.1; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-865.51; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-866.1; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-868.1.


Land Use Planning Process

1-OK-a.1 to 1-OK-a.4 — Contact the Local Government

The developer should contact the local government to determine if there is a comprehensive land use plan in place. Municipal and county governments have the authority to create land use plans and may delegate the administration and harmonization of these plans to a joint planning commission. OK. Stat. Ann. §11-45-101; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-863.1; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-865.51; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-866.1; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-868.1. The type and powers of the joint commissions vary based on the geographic location, type and characteristic of the localities in question.

If there is a land use plan in place, the developer should review the plans and accompanying maps, studies, or other information in order to determine the goals and planning strategies of the local government and to ensure the proposed project is in compliance with the plan.

If there is no land use plan, then the developer should review any applicable local government zoning regulations that could affect the project.

1-OK-a.5 to 1-OK-a.6 — Does the Municipality or County Have Zoning Regulations?

The developer should determine if the relevant locality has zoning regulations. In Oklahoma, municipalities may create zoning regulations. OK. Stat. Ann. §11-43-101. Counties may also create zoning regulations when they are a part of a joint planning commission or have a population over 500,000—counties that are part of a Metropolitan Area Planning Commission may make zoning regulations generally, other counties are restricted to only making regulations with respect to unincorporated areas. OK. Stat. Ann. §19-863.13; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-866.16; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-868.11. Counties with a population under 500,000 and who only utilize a County Planning Commission do not have the power to create zoning regulations. Oklahoma — Oklahoma Attorney General Opinion Letter on County Planning Commissions. If the municipality or county does not have zoning regulations, the developer may proceed with the project. If the municipality or county does have zoning regulations, then the developer should review the zoning regulations to ensure that the project will comply with the regulations.

1-OK-a.7 to 1-OK-a.9 — Determine Whether the Project Conforms with Local Zoning Regulations

If the locality has zoning regulations, the developer needs to determine if the proposed project conforms to the regulations. If the project complies with the zoning regulations, then the developer can proceed with the project as described within the regulations. If the project does not comply, then the developer may need a zoning amendment or the local government equivalent from the applicable county or municipality with jurisdiction.

1-OK-a.10 to 1-OK-a.12 — Contact Local Government About Zoning Amendment or Amendment to Land Use Plan

If the project does not comply with the local zoning regulations, the developer should contact the local government about obtaining a zoning amendment. Municipalities and joint planning commissions may amend their zoning regulations when petitioned to do so. OK. Stat. Ann. §11-43-105; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-863.17; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-866.20; OK. Stat. Ann. §19-868.16. The process of obtaining an amendment will vary based on the type of local government in question. Therefore, a developer should contact the local government in question to determine the procedures for filing for a zoning amendment.

If the locality in question is a county who is not part of a joint planning commission and the project does not meet the county’s land use plan, then the developer should contact the county to determine how to file for an amendment to the land use plan. OK. Stat. Ann. §19-865.58.

1-OK-a.13 to 1-OK-a.14 – Review Application or Petition Materials for Completeness

After the petition or application for amendment is filed, the relevant local government body will review the application for administrative and technical completeness.

1-OK-a.15 to 1-OK-a.17 — Proceed with Amendment Process

After filing for an amendment, the developer and local government should proceed with the amendment process in compliance with the local procedures and regulations. At the conclusion of the proceedings, the local government must decide whether to approve or reject the amendment.

1-OK-a.18 — Proceed with the Project

If the local government approves the amendment, the developer may proceed with the project.

1-OK-a.19 — Appeal Decision (Optional)

If the local government rejects the amendment application, the developer may appeal the decision to the district court. OK. Stat. Ann. §12-951(a).


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