Land Use Planning
Agricultural Land Use Planning benefits the industry and the general public, by assuring that discretionary projects proposed for the unincorporated areas of the county do not adversely impact adjacent agricultural operations. The Agricultural Commissioner’s Office provides environmental review for Land Use Development Projects in the unincorporated area of Ventura County that may impact surrounding agriculture. Comments are also provided on projects within the jurisdiction of the various cities in Ventura County regarding their potential impact on adjacent agriculture. The Agricultural Commissioner serves as staff to the Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee, (APAC) a Board appointed committee that advises the Board of Supervisors on matters affecting agriculture in Ventura County.
The Initial Study Guidelines which govern environmental review of such projects originally contained five separate topics for review. Those topics were Agricultural Soils, Water, Air Quality, Pests and Diseases and Land Use Incompatibility. As part of the Get to Excellence Plan, a streamlining effort conducted by the Resource Management Agency, at the direction of the Board of Supervisors four of the five topics were collapsed into one topic in 2010. Land Use Incompatibility now encompasses water quality and quantity, air quality, and pests and diseases as well as issues of incompatibility between agricultural and non-agricultural uses.
In July of 2010 the Board of Supervisors moved the Agricultural Soils topic under the purview of the Planning Department leaving the Agricultural Commissioner with a single expanded topic of Land Use Incompatibility.