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Meeting Date: January 9, 2001

Subject/Title: Appointment of City Council Representative and Alternate to East Contra Costa County Habitat Conservation Plan Association Executive Governing Committee

Submitted by: Mitch Oshinsky, Community Development Director
Winston Rhodes, Senior Planner

Approved by: Jon Elam, City Manager

Select a City Council representative and an alternate representative to serve on the Executive Governing Committee (EGC) of the East Contra County Habitat Conservation Plan Association (HCPA).

On November 10, 1998 the City Council directed staff to work with other East County jurisdictions and State and federal agencies to explore creation of a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP). On March 28, 2000 the City Council declared the City’s interest in cooperatively developing a HCP with other government jurisdictions in East Contra Costa County and authorized the City Manager to sign an interagency agreement forming the East Contra Costa County Habitat Conservation Plan Association (“HCPA”) to manage preparation of the HCP. 

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the California Department of Fish and Game (CDFG) expressed an interest in working with East County jurisdictions to develop and implement a HCP in order to address regional endangered species issues by establishing a streamlined review process to obtain required federal and state permits. This process would replace the time-consuming case by case approach which is currently utilized to review private and public development projects that involve protected species and related mitigation issues. A HCP provides project proponents with much greater certainty about how to proceed with development proposals in areas which currently provide habitat for protected species.

The City agreed to participate in the preparation of an HCP for east Contra Costa County with the understanding that the City’s participation in the HCP formulation does not obligate the City to adopt the HCP after its preparation or provide any funding without further Council authorization. The HCP preparation process will include opportunities for public input and opportunities for periodic Council review and oversight. In addition, participation in most HCPs is voluntary and does not prevent developers and others from addressing regulations on their own as they have in the past.

The following agencies have also previously agreed to participate in the preparation of an East Contra Costa County HCP: the City of Antioch, City of Clayton, City of Pittsburg, Contra Costa Water District, and the East Bay Regional Park District. All of these agencies with exception of the City of Pittsburg have appointed representatives to the EGC. The City of Pittsburg is scheduled to appoint its EGC representative this month. The City of Oakley is also scheduled to discuss participating in the HCP and appointment of an EGC representative in the future.

The EGC will meet quarterly or as needed and lead the preparation of a HCP for consideration by each agency’s governing body. The first meeting of the EGC is scheduled for January 25, 2001 at 6:30 p.m. in Pittsburg. The major duties of the EGC include the following:

  • Govern and operate the HCPA;
  • Provide policy direction in the preparation of the East Contra County HCP and related documents;
  • Approve a budget for developing the HCP submitted by member agency staff, and ratification of all checks, warrants, and related documents used in the expenditure of HCPA funds since the previous meeting;
  • Approve the retention of agents and consultants, and execution of any agreements and contracts with regulatory agencies and other outside parties necessary to develop the HCP;
  • Oversee compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and other laws applicable to the development of an HCP;
  • Consider approval of the HCP, the Implementation Agreement for the completed HCP, and related documents before such documents are submitted to the individual member agencies with land use planning authority for final approval;

  • In the event that one or more individual land use planning agencies does not approve the final HCP, determine whether to modify the HCP and make a second attempt at approval by all land use planning agencies, or to modify the HCP so that it applies only to the land use planning agencies which approved it originally; and

  • Adopt a conflict of interest code for the HCPA.

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