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Wanted: Public input into Lake Ozark Comp Plan update: The City of Lake Ozark has issued a special invitation to its residents and business owners to help shape the future of the community. The second of three public Focus Sessions on updating the city’s Comprehensive Plan will be held at 6 p.m. Wednesday, June 23, at Willmore Lodge, 1 Willmore Lane, Lake Ozark.  Housing and infrastructure are on the agenda. The final session will be held July 22. The turnout at the first Focus Session in May drew about two dozen individuals to discuss economic development and quality of life, creating a useful dialogue that city staff and plan developer Lake of the Ozarks Council of Local Governments will use in developing the new Comp Plan. Focus Sessions are open to residents, property owners and business owners in City of Lake Ozark.  The plan, which is a long-term guide for the community, hasn’t been updated since 2006. While the city’s economic base and infrastructure have evolved in the last decade, the city’s master development plan has remained unchanged for some 15 years.  Citizen participation is highly encouraged to develop a comprehensive plan which will guide the City of Lake Ozark in decision making for future development that suits both City of Lake Ozark and the community.  “The plan gives the city a vision as to how it wants development in the future,” LOCOLG Executive Director Linda Connor explained when the board voted last year to move ahead with the process. “We want to make sure we put in the plan what the city wants to look like in the next 10-15 years.” An updated Comprehensive Plan is important when the city applies for state and federal funds. “A new Comprehensive Plan will serve as the guiding force for the city as we continue to grow in the near future,” Fry said. “This document will provide a rationale for decision-making for our boards and commissions and will also show the world what the priorities and direction are for the City of Lake Ozark.” Anyone who has questions pertaining to the focus session can contact the Lake of the Ozarks Council of Local Governments at 573-346-5692 or email [email protected]     


There are reasons for the rules

The City of Lake Ozark has seen significant growth in the last few years – especially the last year – and for that we’re thankful. It’s a sign that city officials have made good, balanced decisions in creating an atmosphere of progress.

That progress can be challenging a times, however, as the city has developed processes and procedures that are legal, that protect Lake Ozark citizens and visitors and that protect the many businesses that make Lake Ozark their home. There is validity in requiring such things as permits, building inspections and business licenses.

Simply put: If you plan to do business in Lake Ozark – or any incorporated community – there are certain steps that must be followed in order to be successful and meet legal and ethical obligations.

That’s why it’s so important to contact City of Lake Ozark officials for help in achieving those obligations well in advance of when your business plans to open. The process can seem overwhelming at times, but city officials on all levels are willing and able to help guide business owners and managers through the process. That prevents last-minute issues that could prevent a business from opening.

The city has no intention of keeping qualified businesses out of town, or preventing entrepreneurs from reaching their goals, or thwarting progress. There are rules to follow that nearly every successful business in the community understands and follows.

When businesses attempt to ignore or circumvent the rules, city officials have to help guide the process. There is fairness and equity in making those decisions. No business is ever singled out as officials simply do their due diligence in making sure the rules are followed, which is the expectation of the mayor and board of aldermen.

Equally important for developers and citizens to understand is that City of Lake Ozark employees are doing their jobs based on a legal set of standards and guidelines. The public doesn’t want public employees skirting the rules to benefit one business over another. 

So, please follow the rules and respect those who are required to enforce those rules.