This introduction presents an overview of key concepts discussed in subsequent chapters of this book. The book focuses on the legal and political framework in which planning takes place and explores some of the main social issues in planning. It presents the comprehensive planning process and explains tools of land-use planning to give the reader an understanding of how the community can implement the comprehensive plan. Land-use decisions affect the fiscal health of the community. In a growing community, planners might be concerned with shaping the pattern of growth to achieve a sensible and attractive land-use pattern. That concern means avoiding both oppressively dense development and overly scattered, fragmentary development. The community's planners will also be concerned with the location of public facilities like schools and social service centers, both for the convenience of the people served and for reinforcing the development of a desirable land-use pattern. The majority of planners are employed by government.