Katherine Daniel has been hired as the town’s land-use coordinator, Larry Bradley, the town’s planning and zoning director, announced last week.

Daniel is currently the community development director for the town of Brookfield, where she oversees both the planning and zoning and the inland wetlands activities for the town. according to Bradley.

She holds a master’s degree in soil services from North Carolina State University and is a certified planner from the American Institute of Certified Planners.

“The Planning and Zoning Department and Westport residents are fortunate to have such a qualified professional in this position,” Bradley said in a statement, adding he feels she will be a “great asset to the town.”

“I am confident she has the skills needed to be successful,” he added.

The land-use coordinator’s position was approved this year through an initiative from the first selectman and the Planning and Zoning Commission in order to address concerns about long waiting times for permit approvals as well as citizen difficulties navigating the permitting processes, Bradley said.

The land-use coordinator will act as an ombudsman and expediter for those seeking permits from the town’s land-use departments, he added.

The immediate objective is to bring an improved level of citizen service to the overall process resulting in shorter waiting periods for applicants, expedited processing times and improved citizen satisfaction, he said. It will also free up other planning and zoning officials to focus on plan reviews and zoning enforcement, he added.