Recognizing the problem
Every county in California is required by state law to provide housing for all levels of income earners. El Dorado County has failed to provide housing for the moderate-income earners (those households of four with income limits of $91,300), those with low-income (household of four with limits of $60,900) and very low-income (families of four with incomes limits of $38,050)*. Counties are required by state law to provide for all income levels when planning for future growth. El Dorado County is currently out of compliance with this California Housing Element.
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*Source: California Dept. of Housing & Community Development, EDC HCED Programs.
From the ashes
The California Housing Element Law requires the Housing Element Update to address the necessary conditions for developing and preserving an adequate supply of housing, including housing affordable to seniors, families and workers. From the concerns over the staff projections of $80 million in budgetary costs to fully implement General Plan, the Land Use Policy Programmatic Update process was conceived.
About that same time, group of volunteer land use professionals including engineers, land planners, surveyors and land use attorneys got together and began reviewing land use policies. A key finding of their subcommittee, known as Regulatory Reform, was that El Dorado County had failed to revise its archaic Zoning Ordinance to make it consistent with the adopted General Plan. It was impossible to work with a new General Plan vision using old regulations based on out-of-date ideas.
The group proceeded to suggest appropriate changes and, with the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors’ support, a revised, consistent Zoning Ordinance was analyzed as part of the LUPPU Environmental Impact Report process. In March, the Board of Supervisors held a workshop that addressed several items which “signaled the strong BOS commitment to the much-needed cultural change regarding how El Dorado County does, or does not, do business.” (Now we’re talking!).
Help is on the way
This working group of professional volunteers has assembled to modernize the 40-plus-year-old California Environmental Quality Act with four principles: 1. to integrate environmental and planning laws 2. eliminate CEQA duplication 3. focus CEQA litigation on compliance with environmental and planning laws and 4. enhance public disclosure and accountability. The goal has grown to include not only county staff and policy makers in these important decisions, but the entire community.
A Notice of Public Comment Period for the draft 2013 Housing Element of the El Dorado County General Plan was posted on April 1, 2013, stating,“The California Housing Element Law requires the Housing Element Update to address the necessary conditions for developing &and preserving an adequate supply of housing, including housing affordable to seniors, families and workers.” This is an open invitation for YOU, the public, to provide written comments (within 60 days) to Shawna Purvines, Senior Planner, Development Services Dept., EDC Planning Services.
This link (edcgov.us/LandUseUpdate/) will allow you to type in an assessor’s parcel number and then learn what the land’s current General Plan and zoning designations are, and what the proposed zoning is for the property.