Planner III

Prince William County Government

Prince William, VA

Do you thrive in a fast-paced environment? Would you like to work with a dynamic team of Planning professionals helping to make Prince William County a community of choice through innovative land use planning? If so, the Prince William County Planning Office has an exciting opportunity for you!

Prince William County, a fast-growing community in the Washington D.C. metro region, is seeking to welcome a highly-motivated Planner III to the Planning Office's Current Planning Division. This position performs difficult professional and technical work involving development review cases of broad scope and substantial complexity, provides recommendations to the Planning Director, Planning Commission, and the Board of County Supervisors, negotiates on behalf of the County, and provides staff support to local and regional Boards, Committees, and Commissions. This position requires excellent research, communication, organizational, and analytical skills. The ideal candidate should enjoy working in a creative learning environment, have the ability to meet deadlines, and handle multiple projects simultaneously.

Schedule: Full-time; requires occasional evening meetings.
Hiring Range: $62,029.5 - $83,674.50

General Definition of Work, Typical tasks, Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

The statements in this class specification are intended to describe the general nature and level of work being performed by incumbent(s) assigned to this classification. They are not intended to be construed as an exhaustive list of all responsibilities, duties, and skills required of personnel so classified.

General Definition of Work:

Performs difficult professional and technical work involving professional planner assignments of broad scope and substantial complexity. Work entails serving as an expert in a planning specialty area or program – independently conducting complex specialty work; independently handling special projects coordination; or coordinating and reviewing the work of a small group of planners.

Specialist – Independently conducts the most complex studies and projects; conducts research projects of a difficult and varied nature; or

Special Projects Coordinator – Independently handles broad-based projects that are diverse, politically sensitive and highly visible, requiring extensive coordination and management; or

Team/Program Leader – Leads, assigns, coordinates and reviews the work of a small group of professional planners and technicians within a specific focus or program area.

Planner III level differs from Planner II level in that Planner III positions serve as experts in planning specialty areas or programs, and have broad latitude for determining methods, scheduling and standards, and are expected, on a routine basis, to develop, present and defend findings and recommendations to stakeholder groups and County decision-makers. Planner III level differs from Planner IV level in that Planner IV serves as branch chief or as leader of a major and unique development program, and has managerial and comprehensive programmatic responsibilities.

Work is performed under general supervision of the department director or designee. Supervision may be exercised over subordinate professional, technical and administrative support personnel; may act in absence of Branch Chief, as assigned.

Typical Tasks:

  • Reviews and analyzes rezoning and special use proposals and identifies critical issues; Reviews and analyzes legal documents, including proffer and condition statements;
  • Manages cases and is responsible for overall coordination of the review processes;
  • Coordinates with applicants, citizens, commissions, boards, attorneys, other department divisions, and other reviewing agencies, in compliance with ordinances, policies, comprehensive plans and vision statements;
  • Acts as liaison and facilitates consensus-building discussions and processes; leads pre-application and post-submission meetings;
  • Functions as point of contact for all aspects of assigned cases or projects;
  • Determines whether protected resources exist on proposed development property;
  • Identifies most appropriate method of preserving protected resources;
  • Manages comprehensive plan amendment requests;
  • Researches databases, ordinances, regulations, policies, and maps;
  • Performs comprehensive long-range demographic analysis and forecasting;
  • Recommends policy on specific issues for specific areas based on analysis of demographics;
  • Tracks and analyzes current and pending legislation of other jurisdictions and communities;
  • Visits development sites and investigates their physical features;
  • Researches, prepares and coordinates planning studies;
  • Prepares feasibility studies; provides expertise related to planning and design studies and developmental proposals;
  • Identifies problems and works to develop workable, well-balanced solutions for site development issues;
  • Negotiates conditions and proffers with applicants, consistent with desired outcomes of the County's Comprehensive Plan and Vision Statement;
  • Responsible for quality of negotiations with clients, quality of staff reports, and quality of presentations;
  • Processes proposals and staff reports for public hearings; prepares written, oral and visual arguments that result in desired outcomes;
  • Presents reports, analysis and recommendations to the Planning Commission and to the Board of County Supervisors;
  • Informs and educates the community concerning rezoning and special use permit processes, and concerning individual cases;
  • Provides quality customer service, responding to frequent inquiries in writing or in person regarding various planning and zoning issues, developmental activities, telecommunication facilities, historic/cultural resource preservation, and County projects;
  • Manages consultant contracts relative to assigned special projects - negotiates consultant contracts, approves payments under said contracts and determines final compliance;
  • Participates in the development of revitalization plans;
  • Participates in updating the process of the County Comprehensive Plan;
  • Maintains and updates development models;
  • Ensures that elements of the County's Comprehensive Plan, as they relate to area of specialty, are addressed in the development review process;
  • Serves on task forces involved in developing plans and strategies for both County-owned and non-County properties;
  • Supervises, reviews and evaluates the work of assigned technicians and planners;
  • Submits and manages grant applications for projects;
  • Conducts follow-up actions with grant applicants, grantors, and project progress;
  • Coordinates grant-funded activities with other departments and agencies to ensure grant funding is allocated properly;
  • May be appointed as assistant zoning administrator.

Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:

Thorough knowledge of the principles and practices of planning and design, transportation planning, zoning and community revitalization, including and understanding of the fundamentals of economics, municipal finance, sociology and research procedures, engineering and construction as they pertain to the design and development of urban and regional areas; thorough knowledge of various ordinances, codes and regulations pertaining to planning, zoning and urban renewal; thorough knowledge of the principles, practices and related federal and state laws and regulations related to grant preparation and administration; ability to plan, organize, supervise and carry out complex research projects; skill in presenting results effectively in oral, written and graphic form; ability to speak effectively before large public gatherings; ability to supervise, coach and mentor professional, technical and clerical personnel engaged in planning, zoning and renewal work; ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with County staff, government officials and agency staff, community stakeholder groups, private property owners, development professionals and consultants; private architects, engineers and contractors.

Education and Experience:

Any combination of education and experience equivalent to a Bachelor's Degree in Planning or related field, 3-5 years of progressively responsible professional planning experience in a field appropriate to the assignment of the position, and 1 year supervisory experience of staff.


AICP certification preferred.

Master's Degree preferred.

Special Requirements:


  • Project Management - Demonstrated competency in the ability to:
    • 2-A-3 develop and implement a work plan for a specific project using departmental resources.
    • 2-A-4 develop and implement a work plan for a project involving multiple departments.
  • Facilitation - Demonstrated competency in the ability to:
    • 4-A-2 facilitate the resolution of every day conflicts within the department.
  • Leadership – Demonstrated competency in the ability to:
    • 4-C-1 articulate a vision to the organization.
    • 4-C-2 build organizational consensus around a vision.
    • 4-C-6 identify measures of success for the vision.
    • 4-C-7 inspire and mentor others in the organization to achieve the desired outcomes.
  • Land Use Application/Plan Review - Demonstrated competency in the ability to:
    • 5-C-3 work with applicants to correct noted deficiencies.
  • Written Communication - Demonstrated competency in the ability to:
    • 5-E-3 generate reports that include one's own analysis, opinions and recommendations.
    • 5-E-4 generate persuasive written arguments that result in the desired outcome.
  • Drafting/Graphics - Demonstrated competency in the ability to:
    • 5-G-2 create PowerPoint files that enhance oral presentations.
  • Problem Solving/Judgment - Demonstrated competency in the ability to:
    • 6-A-1 identify the "core" problem and work with varied individuals to develop a workable solution.
    • 6-A-2 eliminate "hands-off".


(PLEASE NOTE: The close date for this position is September 13, 20178 at 11:59 PM Eastern)

1 County Complex Court
Suite 155
Woodbridge, VA 22192

Prince William County is an Equal Opportunity Employer and supports workforce diversity.

Prince William County determines the legal employment status of all County employees by utilizing a two step process. Document verification is the first step of the process which is required of all employers as set forth in the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986. The second step in our process is E-Verify, an Internet-based system made available by the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration. This system permits the County to electronically confirm legal employment status of all new hires.

Experience Level
Mid II (4-8 years)
AICP Level
Land Use Planning
Salary Range
$62,029.50 - $105, 300

Contact Information

Human Resources
1 County Complex Court
Suite 155
Prince William, VA
United States
Resource URL