FOLLOW UP: Notice of Intent to Adopt a Negative Declaration for 2015-2023 Housing Element of the General Plan
Oscar Murillo from City of Campbell
As a follow up to our December 5, 2014, post regarding the General Plan, Housing Element, and Negative Declaration, we would like to provide additional information on the definitions of these terms.
What is a General Plan?
(From the League of California Cities publication:)
“California law requires every city and county to periodically update its General Plan, the document considered by many to be the Constitution for land-use decisions at the local level.” “A General Plan must include seven specific elements — land use, circulation, housing, conservation, open space, noise and safety. It may also contain other permissive elements related to land-use development, including (but not limited to): urban design; economic and fiscal development; capital improvements and public facilities; air quality; energy; flood management; geothermal resources; and water. Yet the General Plan process offers a great deal of latitude to create a vision for the community that reflects its residents’ unique needs and those of the surrounding region.”
“State law requires that local governments update their general plans periodically but doesn’t specifically define how often. The housing element, however, which is one of the seven mandatory elements, must be updated every five to eight years, depending on which update requirement applies to the region in question.”
What is a Negative Declaration?
(From the University of California definitions:)
“According to CEQA Statutes Section 21064, a Negative Declaration is a “written statement briefly describing the reasons that a project will not have a significant effect on the environment and does not require the preparation of an environmental impact report. A Negative Declaration is a document that describes the proposed project, presents the findings, and states the reasons why the decision maker has concluded that there will be no significant effect. A completed Initial Study must be attached to a Negative Declaration to support the determination of no significant effect.”