The next steps towards the agreement on a new county development plan for Roscommon were take at the latest meeting of the County Council, held on Monday of this week. A presentation was made to the meeting on the draft plan and the document which covers every area of economic activity in County Roscommon will shortly be going on display to the public. The new plan will cover the period 2008-2014 and includes local area plans for some of the county’s bigger towns and centres of population. Areas covered by the plan includes population growth, housing, roads, water, sewage, employment, tourism, infrastructure, transport, lighting, planning, waste management, energy, telecommuinications, agriculture, industrial and rural development, to mention just a few of the headings. The plan will be amended by councillors over the next two weeks and it is hoped that it will then be put on public display for consideration for a period of ten weeks. It is hoped that the final schedule for the plan can begin in September and that a final plans might be available in early 2008. A new plan must be agreed by July 2008, the date when the current plan runs out. There are thousands of interesting items in the draft plan which will shortly be going on display but one that this writer picked out is that the plan envisages another sharp rise in the population of County Roscommon by 2014. Now in 2007 there are 58,700 people living in Roscommon but by 2014 the estimate is that there will be 66,709, which is a 14% increase.