Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Mendocino County Distributes Over $2 Million in Grants to Bolster Climate Resiliency

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The following is a press release issued by the County of Mendocino:

The waters and cliffs of the Mendocino County coast [Picture by Matt LaFever]

Funding for the California Coastal Commission Local Coastal Program (LCP) Local Assistance Grant Program is provided by the Budget Act of 2021, which was an appropriation of $31 million to the Coastal Commission to support its LCP Local Assistance Grant Program for Climate Resiliency. The funding is to be awarded to local governments, as well as to support Coastal Commission staff administering the program and working with local governments on climate resiliency. The use of funds is for projects that are designed to assist local governments in assessing impacts and planning for coastal resiliency, including adapting to the impacts of climate change and sea level rise, and which contain an LCP planning component.

Mendocino County Department of Planning and Building Services, with the assistance of the County Executive Office, applied for Round 8 of the LCP Local Assistance Grant funding in September 2022. The grant application sought an award of $2,177,399 to complete a comprehensive update of the County LCP, including associated technical studies and outreach. On November 16, 2022, the California Coastal Commission granted the County’s application in the full amount.

The County’s LCP has not been comprehensively updated since it was certified by the California Coastal Commission in 1992. The update will include revisions to the Coastal Element of the General Plan (Land Use Plan, “LUP”) and Coastal Zoning Code (Implementation Program, “IP”). The overall goal of the project is to improve local coastal planning in Mendocino County to better address coastal resiliency and climate change adaptation by updating technical studies, descriptions, policies, maps, and the implementation plan for the LCP in order to adapt to the impacts of climate change, sea level rise, and associated coastal hazards while maintaining the overall quality of the coastal zone environment in the interest of all people.

Some of key components to this update include:

  • Technical Studies – the County will complete technical studies necessary for updating LCP policies to address topics relating to water supply and sewage disposal availability, transportation resources and development issues, agricultural resources and development issues, coastal access and visitor serving facilities, rare plants and sensitive natural communities, and visual resources.
  • Environmental Impact Report – In order to facilitate adoption of the Coastal Element and Coastal Zoning Code updates, the County will prepare an Environmental Impact Report to satisfy CEQA requirements and provide a framework and baseline level of analysis for CCC review.
  • Public and Stakeholder Engagement – A variety of stakeholders will be engaged in the development of the updated LCP to ensure appropriate involvement and buy-in.
  • Updated LUP and IP section – the County will submit a comprehensive LCP update

The County will initiate work on this update in 2023 after executing the grant agreement with the California Coastal Commission and will be submitting the Local Coastal Program Amendment application to the California Coastal Commission for certification in 2026.

For additional details on the grant application including draft schedule, the full application can be viewed here.

The current LCP is made up of multiple components. The current components may be viewed on the Planning & Building Services website at the following links:

Coastal Element of the General Plan
https://www.mendocinocounty.org/government/planning-building-services/plans/coastal-element

Gualala Town Plan
https://www.mendocinocounty.org/government/planning-building-services/plans/gualala-town-plan

Mendocino Town Plan https://www.mendocinocounty.org/government/planning-building-services/plans/mendocino-town-plan-and-zoning-code

Coastal Zoning Code – Division II of Title 20 of Mendocino County Code
https://library.municode.com/ca/mendocino_county/codes/code_of_ordinances?nodeId=MECOCO_TIT20ZOOR_DIVIIMECOCOZOCO_CH20.308DE_S20.308.035DED

Town of Mendocino Zoning Code – Division III of Title 20 of Mendocino County Code
https://library.municode.com/ca/mendocino_county/codes/code_of_ordinances?nodeId=MECOCO_TIT20ZOOR_DIVIIIMETOZOCO

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MendoFever Staff
MendoFever Staff
Editor's Note: Whenever an article's byline reads "MendoFever Staff", the contents of that article were not composed by any of our reporters. Types of writing that will be attributed to "MendoFever Staff" include press releases, letters to the editor, op-eds, obituaries— essentially writing that is not produced by a reporter.

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