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Meeting Date: December 9, 2003

Subject/Title: Consideration of Approval of Shaping Our Future Principles Of Agreement

Submitted by: Community Development Department (M. Oshinsky)

Approved by: John Stevenson, City Manager

That the City Council review the material provided, and then adopt a resolution approving the Principles of Agreement, subject to the Urban Limit Line proposal of the City being accepted by the County Board of Supervisors.

On January 22, 2002, the City Council voted to appropriate $13,981 (the City’s proportionate share), and participate in the Shaping Our Future (SOF) Study. Councilmember Ana Gutierrez was thereafter appointed by Council as the City’s representative to the SOF Policy Committee.

On May 13, 2003, Council provided input to the SOF Policy Committee on the draft Vision Plan, and adjustments to the Urban Limit Line (ULL) to bring it into conformance with our General Plan Map.

On September 24, 2003, Councilmembers were provided copies of the Draft Final SOF report.

On October 1, 2003, the SOF Policy Committee approved an amended version of the Principles of Agreement (attached), superseding pages 16 – 19 of the Draft Final SOF report that Council received on September 24th. The SOF Policy Committee is now requesting City Council review and adoption of the Principles and concepts of the Vision for future countywide growth and development.

In 2002 the City supported the concept of doing a voluntary joint effort with other cities and the County to look at alternative growth options for the next 20 years. The SOF premise was that through collaboration and cooperation, and through looking at the impacts of growth of all the agencies, there might be a new pattern of growth for consideration in the future.

We joined the effort and appropriated $13,981 of financial support for the $750,000 effort. Councilmember Gutierrez was appointed to represent our City on the Policy Committee that guided the overall work efforts.

According to the Project Manager for SOF (Don Blubaugh), the process used by the SOF consultant, Fregonese-CaIthorpe, in developing the Vision included a number of public workshops, public opinion focus groups and polling, and several workshops for feedback and reaction from elected officials and planning commissioners. The SOF Policy Committee ultimately accepted the SOF Vision and a Vision Map.

According to Mr. Blubaugh, throughout this process it has been made very clear that SOF is a voluntary effort, and nothing contained in the report or its implementing documents compel us to take any action contrary to our local agency wishes. Even endorsing the Vision now does not prevent us from withdrawing support should the on-going work move in a direction that would not be comfortable for this or future City Councils.

The implementing documents for endorsing the effort are two fold. First, we are asked to approve the basic principles of agreement document that is before you tonight. Later we will be asked to adopt a voluntary agreement or "compact" that will contain more specifics that will be developed only if there is basic agreement in principle that the Vision is appropriate for the future of this County.

The major issue in the Principles for Brentwood appears to be the ULL. The Council has expressed concerns previously with the ULL Principal. The City is currently taking the lead in working with County Supervisors Glover and Greenberg to craft a proposal for ULL adjustments that would present a solution to regional transportation problems, and provide for planned, orderly, phased growth. Therefore, it is recommended that Council vote to approve the Principles, subject to the ULL proposal of the City being accepted by the County Board of Supervisors.

Staff had questions on the Principles that have been answered as outlined below. Principle 2, Open Space, references the cities agreeing in principle to implement the County community's future open space preservation goals, as delineated in the draft proposed open space funding measure. This refers to the countywide effort for the past two years to identify lands for preservation and to come up with a funding mechanism. Ron Brown of Save Mt. Diablo, and County staff have created preservation goals and suggest that a postal ballot assessment measure be placed before the voters. Some funds would be returned to local communities, others go for regional projects.

Principle 8, Social Equity, speaks of a housing "trust fund." Our question was, how would that be funded, and how would the use of such funds be allocated, and by whom? The answer is that the next step after the Principles is to begin work on the Housing Trust Fund. A grass roots group of housing advocates have already started. Each city and the county will be actively involved in helping shape what the fund is, how it is governed and how it is funded. The notion is that this would be an additional source of money to assist in meeting affordable housing requirements.

According to Mr. Blubaugh, we should keep in mind that these are Principles (such as the Trust Fund) with some ideas to be developed further. Approving the Principles of Agreement does not bind Brentwood to the Trust Fund if it is developed in a manner not consistent with Brentwood wishes. Hopefully, Brentwood will be at the table to help shape what the fund is. One final note from Don Blubaugh. He hopes Brentwood will consider adopting the Principles if our only concern is the location of the ULL. He believes the ULL matter will be resolved or else there will be no Measure C renewal.

There are no direct fiscal impacts related to approving the Principles of Agreement. However, there could be fiscal impacts related to whether the ULL changes, and/or if the City’s growth pattern changes as a result of the implementation of the Vision Plan. Such effects cannot be accurately predicted at this time.

Principles of Agreement



WHEREAS, the Contra Costa Shaping Our Future Project is a collaborative regional planning effort undertaken and funded by Contra Costa County and by all 19 cities in the County; and

WHEREAS, the purpose of the Shaping Our Future project was to create a community-based "Vision" that would be used to guide and orient growth in the County over the next 20 years; and

WHEREAS, the Shaping Our Future Vision addresses growth-related issues such as using land more efficiently, preserving the integrity of existing neighborhoods, reducing congestion in key areas, encouraging more development in city and town centers and at transit nodes, developing transportation strategies, redeveloping business districts that may be under used or run down, preserving open space and hillsides and capitalizing on other key features of the natural Contra Costa environment, and the need for a county-wide economic development effort that will promote jobs and employment throughout the county but particularly in West and
East County; and

WHEREAS, the community at large has had an opportunity to participate in the creation of this Vision through numerous workshops, focus groups and through a countywide poll; and

WHEREAS, the Policy Committee of Shaping Our Future, elected representatives of all participating jurisdictions, recommends that the Vision, as outlined in summary form in the Vision Summary Report, be approved by all participating jurisdictions by adopting Principles of Agreement attached hereto and made a part hereof; and

WHEREAS, the Shaping Our Future effort is a collaborative, volunteer working relationship with the knowledge that all jurisdictions retain sole and exclusive rights to determine land use matters within its respective jurisdictions; and

WHEREAS, adoption of this resolution is exempt from environmental review as it is not defined as a project pursuant to CEQA; and

WHEREAS, the City Council of Brentwood sees the significance of the cooperative work with other jurisdictions and wishes to continue in support of implementing the Vision in this jurisdiction.

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Shaping Our Future Principles of
Agreement dated October 1, 2003 are hereby approved subject to the Urban Limit Line proposal of the City being accepted by the County Board of Supervisors.

PASSED, APPROVED AND ADOPTED this 9th day of December 2003 by the following vote:

(Approved by Policy Committee on October 1, 2003)


The County and local municipalities principally agree on one Urban Limit Line (ULL) as a shared growth management tool. One agreed upon "line" should be adopted that works for both the County and local municipalities. City boundaries and the ULL are considered coterminous in those cases where the existing ULL lies within a city boundary unless a city has taken official action to move the ULL within its city boundaries. The eventually amended and adopted line should be committed to for a longer period of time, in the range of 15-20 years. A periodic review of every 5-10 years may be suitable (and necessary), however, to compare capacity within the boundary with ABAG growth projections and prepare adjustments if necessary to stay within the 15-20 year range.


Protection of open space and valuable agricultural resources is important to the County and the cities of Contra Costa. Jurisdictions in Contra Costa value protected open space - including prime farmland and open space slated for protection - and will work towards continued enhancement of additional open space needs through entitlement or purchase. The County and local municipalities agree in principle to undertake the coordination and implementation of the County community's future open space preservation goals, as delineated in the draft proposed open space funding measure. These and future open space acquisition efforts shall be incorporated into the Vision's open space element.


The County and local municipalities agree in principle that long-range visions of where growth should locate will be based on coordinated local general plans and the Shaping Our Future concept. General plans will be guided by the kind, type, location, and quality of development described by the Shaping Our Future Vision. It is acknowledged that many communities have valuable unique physical attributes that may conflict with some Shaping Our Future goals, but are still valued and important to those communities. The County and local municipalities agree in principle that it is appropriate for local jurisdictions and unincorporated areas to apply the principles of Shaping Our Future as each sees fit. Even while working towards a common regional vision, jurisdictions will retain local control of general plans and zoning of land within their municipal boundary. In no case shall a jurisdiction's General Plan be subordinated by the Shaping Our Future Vision Plan.


The County and local municipalities agree in principle that regional transportation planning will primarily occur through the Contra Costa Transportation Authority (CCTA). While CCTA will coordinate with local municipalities with respect to land use, it will have no authority over land use designation within city jurisdictions or the County unincorporated area. Regional transportation plans should contain a growth management strategy consistent with the goals envisioned by the Shaping Our Future Vision. The CCTA should also use the Vision to guide renewal of the regional transportation plan.
Shaping Our Future
Principles of Agreement
October 1, 2003
Page 2


The County and local municipalities agree in principle to coordinate with agencies such as the Contra Costa Economic Partnership, the Contra Costa Council and local area Chambers of Commerce to attract investment and job growth into Contra Costa. The County and local municipalities will assist in developing a "one-stop shop" (e.g. workforce development resource center) for economic and workforce development information and referrals in the County. They also agree to assist in developing employment opportunities and new investment throughout the County, particularly in East and West County.


Under California State law each jurisdiction is responsible for developing a housing element as part of its General Plans. The County and local municipalities agree in principle to cooperate and communicate with each other in the development of their housing elements using best available data of developable and redevelopable land. An agreed upon agency will maintain a database of the housing elements of the cities and the County, accessible by all City and County planning offices. With respect to appropriate proportion of affordable housing allocated to each jurisdiction, the data will be used to track housing allocations in each jurisdiction. Each agency has a responsibility to address affordable housing issues using a variety of strategies and programs to achieve its goals. It shall be the goal of each community to strive towards an overall regional jobs and housing balance.


An integral element of the Shaping Our Future Vision is to encourage the accommodation of growth in reinvestment and infill areas, as identified by local agencies. Reinvestment in underutilized developed land preserves the health of stable neighborhoods, existing vibrant urban areas, and open space. The growth and prosperity of urban centers, as envisioned in the Shaping Our Future Vision, requires that areas be identified for reinvestment, and policies, laws, and investments support these targeted areas. The County and local municipalities agree in principle to the importance of reinvestment and infill development where it is most appropriate, and to the preservation of existing neighborhoods.


The County and local municipalities agree in principle to develop affordable housing in the most appropriate settings and to mitigate the effects of displacement that reinvestment can have in affordable communities. Additionally, the County and local municipalities agree to explore the creation of a housing "trust fund" that can be used to supplement local agency efforts and focus investments in affordable housing in locations or jurisdictions that most need assistance and where local agencies are working diligently to achieve affordable housing goals. The housing trust fund should include agencies such as local governments, the Contra Costa Economic Partnership, the banking community, community development financial institutions and other entities that will further the goal of creating affordable housing within Contra Costa County.

Shaping Our Future
Principles of Agreement
October 1, 2003
Page 3


An educated populace is a cornerstone to the long-term well being of the region. The County and local municipalities agree in principle to collaborate with school districts and area colleges to continue to improve educational opportunities for area citizens. The County and local municipalities agree to initiate discussions with local area schools, school districts, and higher-education institutions to determine suitable and best locations for new schools and colleges and also redevelopment of existing schools, as part of the planning process. The objective of such planning is to assure that any changes in school facility and program requirements resulting from growth can be implemented without any detrimental impact on the availability of educational opportunities in Contra Costa County.


As higher density development occurs in town and village centers and at major transit facilities as outlined in this Vision, each agency agrees to consider the adequacy of existing park facilities and plan additions where appropriate.


In Contra Costa County, special districts often provide water and sewer services. These services are critical to implementing the Shaping Our Future Vision. Each planning agency agrees to work closely with appropriate districts to assure that there is service available to meet the needs of planned job and housing expansion called for in local general plans. The objective of such service planning is to assure that the additional demands for water and sewer capacity resulting from growth can be adequately met without placing additional constraints on existing service customers, and without any detrimental impact on existing service quality.


The Shaping Our Future Vision was a collective effort of cities and Contra Costa County. The cooperative effort should be continued when it comes to specific comprehensive planning with the result of neighboring communities working together as plans are formulated and adopted.

Many cities have LAFCO established sphere of influence boundaries outlining where the city will eventually grow through annexations. The sphere boundaries are based on logical and practical governmental service areas. The affected jurisdictions commit to recognizing the established sphere of influence lines and agree to cooperative, comprehensive planning so that future land use and development standards will be compatible. Any development in Spheres of Influence should be consistent with such plans developed jointly by affected jurisdictions.


Comprehensive and consistent data are critical to coordinating and monitoring a countywide growth management strategy. It is necessary to maintain standardized data that are useable at the region-wide level to observe, compare, and monitor the cumulative effects of change with Shaping Our Future
Principles of Agreement
October 1, 2003
Page 4

respect to growth management. County and local municipalities agree in principle to ensure appropriate and reliable methods in gathering data, in particular standardizing the method for determining vacant land and properties already developed with high potential for reinvestment. Local municipalities agree in principle to collaborate with the County to establish criteria for identifying vacant and underutilized lands, based upon locally adopted General Plan standards.


United responses to local, regional, and state and other regulating entities based on the values and well-being of the regional Contra Costa community is valued by the County and local municipalities.


The County and local municipalities principally agree and acknowledge that the Shaping Our Future Vision will guide land use and transportation planning and coordination among jurisdictions. Moreover, it is agreed that the Vision is a dynamic document that may be modified in the future by mutual consent of the affected signatories to reflect changes in the county.

It is the general intent of the County and local municipalities to enter into a Compact to carry forward the Principles of Agreement and the implementation of the elements and goals developed in the Shaping Our Future Vision.

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