Zoning Amendments (continued)
Zoning Amendment Process
When an application is received in Planning, it is date-stamped, receipted and tentatively scheduled for the Project Clearance Committee (PCC) meeting. All inter-departmental concerns regarding the proposed project including necessary design changes, recommended conditions of approval and environmental findings are discussed at the PCC meeting. The applicant and/or a representative is encouraged to attend. The Committee must determine if the application contains all necessary information in order to be deemed complete. When the Committee determines a Negative Declaration or Environmental Impact Report is required, the appropriate process must be completed prior to scheduling the item for a fully noticed public hearing. Copies of the PCC minutes are mailed to each owner and applicant within approximately five to ten days after Project Clearance Committee review.
Staff prepares a report for the items on the Planning Commission agenda. At their meeting, the Planning Commission reviews staff recommendations, public testimony and the applicant's presentation. The Commission then makes a recommendation to the City Council for either approval or denial of the application based on specified findings. Findings are usually accompanied by recommended conditions.
Planning Commission Meeting Dates
The Planning Commission conducts public hearings generally once or twice a month on matters such as Rezonings. Planning Commission meeting dates are available at the Permit Center or can be found online.
Public Noticing Requirements
At least ten days prior to the Planning Commission meeting Notices of Hearing are mailed to all property owners within a three hundred foot radius of the application property. Ten days prior to the meeting, four notices are posted in at least three conspicuous places near or on the affected property. Concerned citizens may contact the Planning Division and submit written comments regarding an application. They may also address the Planning Commission at the public hearing regarding the proposal. If a concerned citizen later chooses to challenge a land use decision of the Planning Commission (or Council), he or she may be limited to raising only those issues raised at the public hearing or in written correspondence delivered to the Planning Division or Planning Commission at, or prior to the public hearing.
Following the Commission hearing, notices may need to be prepared and distributed for those items which are forwarded to the City Council for final approval. The City Clerk prepares the Council agenda and may be contacted at (408) 615-2220 regarding the scheduling of specific agenda items.
The Council, after hearing the applicant's presentation and taking public testimony, acts to either approve or deny the proposed project. If significant new information is presented at the Council meeting, the Council can also refer the matter back to the Planning Commission for a new hearing. If approved, zone changes are effective upon conclusion of the Council's period of reconsideration of their action (typically seven days). Amendments to the text of the Zoning Ordinance become effective thirty days following the date of Council final adoption of the ordinance, unless an Emergency Ordinance is adopted.