Function and Responsibilities
The Planning Division is the primary land use information center for Shasta County. Among its major responsibilities are the maintenance and enforcement of the County General Plan and the County Zone Plan. The Division processes all permits for such items as land divisions, use permits, zone changes, and General Plan amendments. The Division also enforces the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) associated with the review of these applications.
The Division provides research and report services on land use related matters to the Planning Commission, the Resource Lands Committee, the Airport Land Use Commission, and the Board of Supervisors. Additionally, it works with the Regional Transportation Planning Agency in implementing applicable portions of the County's Regional Transportation Plan and the Congestion Management Plan.
The Planning Division also provides information to the general public and to other public and private agencies regarding the growth and development of the County. The report data discusses the areas designated to accommodate residential, commercial or industrial uses and the development standards, policies, and permits required for such activities. The Division also processes all requests for Specific Plans and Environmental Impact Reports (EIRs) for large developments. Staff planners also work cooperatively with area residents through Citizen Advisory Committees in the development of community plans for rural town centers and communities throughout the County.
The Division functions as the County's Federal Census Data Center and disseminates information to the public regarding population, economic, and housing characteristics and trends for the County and its individual rural town centers and communities.
The Division also implements the local Surface Mining and Reclamation Act Program (SMARA). This program includes the permitting requirements for new and existing mining operations which include gravel and cinder pits, limestone and diatomaceous earth quarries, and underground gold mines. The Division processes mining permits and reclamation plans and ensures that money is set aside to guarantee mine cleanup and reclamation. The Division also inspects the mining operation and enforces compliance with state regulations and local ordinances.
The Division administers the Integrated Land Use/Air Quality Program (ILU/AQP) which addresses the development of strategies and mitigation measures to address air quality impacts created by emissions from indirect and/or mobile sources.
The Planning Commission
The Planning Commission is composed of five members, each of whom shall be a resident of Shasta County. Each member of the Board of Supervisors shall nominate for appointment or propose for reappointment to the commission one member of the public, who shall be a resident of the district represented by that supervisor. Each commissioner shall serve a term of four years, which shall be concurrent with the term of the member of the Board of Supervisors of the district in which the commissioner resides.
The Planning Commission makes decisions on land use matters scheduled for public hearing regarding land divisions, use permits, and variances. Action on some of the Planning Commission decisions can be appealed to the Board of Supervisors.
The Commission also makes recommendations to the Board of Supervisors on public hearing items such as Zone Changes, General Plan Amendments, adoption of Community and Specific Plans, Williamson Act Contracts, and Timber Preserve Contracts.
Referral Agency Review
The Referral Agency review is a process whereby the Department of Resource Management, the Department of Public Works, the County Fire Department, and other departments, as determined by the Director of the Department of Resource Management, receive referrals of development applications for review and comment as to project completeness, design, environmental determination and formation of recommended mitigation measures and conditions.