Posts Tagged ‘County Board of Supervisors’
The San Diego County Board of Supervisors decided not to tinker with the makeup or structure of its planning groups despite recommendations from the Red Tape Reduction Task Force that called for term limits and modest experience qualifications. Some county planning groups have brought the ire of property owners and project applicants who say the groups act more like quasi regulatory agencies that demand design changes and multiple meetings rather than as an advisory board as prescribed by county law. Their approach leads to excessive delays that add thousands of dollars in project costs.
Planning group members raised strong objections to any changes but the Supervisors did implement a mandatory training session for planning group members in order for their group to receive indemnification protection from the County. Supervisors are moving forward with a host of regulatory improvements designed to improve the overall time and efficiency of its land use review process.
The county is moving forward with a proposal to reduce its Traffic Impact Fee by 40% to 50% in the coming weeks. The fees are paid into a county fund by construction projects and are used for future roadway improvements. The reduction is a by-product of the new General Plan which will lower projected roadway costs from $900 million to $535 million due to future development being located near existing towns and infrastructure.
County staff will hold a workshop on March 19th to provide more detail to three alternative financing plans that range from $420 million to $535 million. Additional workshops are scheduled for March 22nd in Ramona and March 27th in Jamul.
It is expected to go to the County Planning Commission on April 13th followed by a hearing before County Supervisors in May.
The San Diego County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Wednesday to evaluate and enact regulatory reform recommendations presented by the Red Tape Reduction Task Force. This was the second time the board voted on the Task Force recommendations in response to a litigation threat from community activists who claimed the County failed to follow appropriate public noticing procedures. The Supervisors decided it was more prudent to simply rehear the proposal rather than defend against a law suit in court.
The BIA, along with several property owners and small builders, spoke in favor of the recommendations citing the length and difficulty of navigating the county’s land use approval process. The County has long been criticized as the most difficult jurisdiction to do business compared to other local cities due to voluminous regulatory requirements that take years to complete. “We put a man on the moon in nine years, surely we can approve development projects faster than that,” said BIA Vice President, Matt Adams.
Others, were not so supportive of the reform process. Several planning group members took exception to proposals intended to improve the planning group review process which included term limits and modest experience requirements. Other suggestions included a plan to remove planning groups from the county’s umbrella outright and allow them to function independently.
The Supervisor voted to enact some reforms immediately such as empowering project managers to make decisions, create performance measures to address project timelines and the creation of an external Audit Committee to review the performance of the planning department. County staff will use the month of March to review remaining proposals and return the the board on March 29th with their implementation strategy.
Responding to a suit arguing that the San Diego County Board of Supervisors failed to properly notice a hearing on ways to cut government red tape, the Board of Supervisors will re-hear the recommendations on February 29th. A host of recommendations were unanimously approved by the board on December 7th.
The Red Tape Reduction Task Force was appointed to focus on the land use permitting process and produced 17 recommendations to improve regulatory efficiency. The recommendations include ongoing staff training, an end to redundant plan checks, reforming planning group procedures and the creation of an Audit Committee to monitor the regulatory process.
Some planning group members are up in arms over proposed changes to planning groups such as adding term limits and qualification requirements. The Board decided it was better to re-vote on the items in order to avoid of litigation.
Recommendations to improve project processing will be heard by the County Board of Supervisors on Wednesday, December 7th. The board appointed Task Force began its work in April and focused on the discretionary land use permitting process and produced 17 recommendations to improve regulatory efficiency. The recommendations include ongoing staff training, an end to redundant plan checks, reform planning group procedures and the creation of an Audit Committee to monitor the regulatory process.
The recommendations were crafted following 16 meetings and multiple interviews with county staff. The Supervisors are expected to accept the report and direct staff to evaluate the findings and report back within 60 days.
The County Board of Supervisors voted to streamline its general plan amendment process that project applicants have long complained was duplicative and overly bureaucratic. The process – known as Policy I-63 – required applicants to seek county staff approval before being allowed to submit their plans for consideration. Concerns were that the process was tantamount to an ‘application for an application,’ which added unnecessary time and costs. Policy I-63 is set to expire in December and will be replaced with a more streamlined approach.
The Supervisors decided to replace I-63 with a BIA supported preliminary review process that would allow staff to identify major issues the applicant would have to address but staff will no longer have the authority to deny projects for consideration. The Supervisors agreed that property owners had a right to have their projects considered and should be allowed to proceed with the full knowledge that there was no guarantee that their general plan amendment request would be approved. The Supervisors will vote on the final ordinance in early December.
The San Diego County Board of Supervisors approved its long delayed General Plan update bringing to a close a 13-year odyssey that involved hundreds of property owners and even more public meetings. Under the new general plan, the county seeks to direct future growth closer to existing towns and infrastructure that, according to the Supervisors, will save taxpayers millions of dollars in revised infrastructure costs and significantly reduce processing times for project applicants. The board voted 4 to 1 with Supervisor Horn opposing.
After nearly 14 years, the County Board of Supervisors finally adopted the County General Plan Update on a 4-1 vote (with Supervisor Horn dissenting). Supervisor Pam Slater promised the industry that the GPU will save applicants time and money. As this was the industry’s major complaint as to the previous development application process and its notorious lack of any process certainty, we will be monitoring this critical aspect. Major kudos go to Matt Adams, BIA Staff Vice President, and his team of volunteers who serve on our Public Policy Committee for bringing this to a productive close. More information to follow.
After 13 years of meetings, hearings and general aggravation the County Board of Supervisors is poised to give the final approval to its General Plan update. The new county plan is the first in nearly 30 years and would direct future growth in the unincorporated area closer to existing towns and infrastructure. The BIA has been engaged in the massive revision process since its inception to ensure that it provides the necessary planning tools and zoning needed for the plan to be fully implemented.
Several key issues remain heading into next week’s hearing as back county property owners continue their strong objection to the downzoning of areas as restrictive as one home on 80 acres of land. They argue that the drastic land use change will severely impact the value of their land causing significant financial hardship. The BIA continues its drive to ensure that property owners will have access to a fair and reasonable general plan amendment process that will give property owners the right to seek a rezone of their property.
The Board of Supervisors will consider the General Plan update at its August 3rd hearing.
The San Diego County Board of Supervisors took a major step forward toward the final passage of its general plan update. Land owners, the business community and property rights advocates have been dueling with County staff for 13 years over the plan that would direct future growth closer to existing towns and infrastructure and leave vast portions of the back country downzoned.
The day-long hearing had the Supervisors reviewing zoning on a parcel by parcel basis as well as a laundry list of policies that will guide the implementation of the new general plan. The BIA successfully pursued significant policy changes needed to prevent regulatory conflicts throughout to plan, however, backcounty property owners berated the Supervisors for agreeing to downzones as low as one unit on 80 acres. The Farm Bureau challenged the county’s financial plan to provide compensation for farmers who say they will lose property value as a consequence of the downzoning.
At the end of the day, the Supervisors directed staff to continue to speak with landowners who dispute the zoning designations being placed on their land and to return on August 3rd with the necessary documents for final consideration of the general plan update.