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Planning Commission

Most City Board and Commission meetings are being facilitated through telecommunications to avoid close personal contact during the COVID-19 crisis. Please refer to the current Board/Commission meeting agenda for further information on how to participate, or contact the Board/Commission secretary for further assistance.


The development of the City Planning Commission, formed in 1923, was mainly an outgrowth of the activities of the Plans and Planning Committee, a citizens group. The 1925 earthquake destroyed many structures, and the extensive rebuilding that followed offered the Commission a fresh opportunity for instituting a planning process for the future growth of the City.

The first building and zoning ordinances were adopted in 1923 and 1925, and the City's first comprehensive General Plan in 1964. The Commission now sends representatives to other City Boards and Commissions.

General Functions

  1. Recommend to the City Council, after a public hearing thereon, the adoption, amendment or repeal of the General Plan, or any part thereof, and specific or precise plans it may deem advisable for guidance in the physical development of the City.
  2. Exercise such functions with respect to land subdivisions as provided by ordinance not inconsistent with the provisions of the City Charter (approve or disapprove tentative subdivision maps; and authorized to require dedications for public use as a condition for approval of subdivision maps, etc.).
  3. Exercise such functions with respect to zoning, building, land use, redevelopment, conservation, proposed public works and related matters as may be prescribed by ordinance not inconsistent with the City Charter (all actions provided by the Zoning Ordinance in connection with modifications, variances, site plans, development plans, etc. and make recommendations to City Council for amendments to the Zoning Ordinance).
Committee Functions
Membership Seven members
Qualifications Must be qualified electors of the City
Length of Term Four years and until successors are appointed. Staggered terms expire on December 31 of the appropriate year.
Meeting Schedule The Commission meets on the first, second and third Thursdays of each month* at 1:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber, City Hall, 735 Anacapa Street, preceded by a 12:00 p.m. lunch meeting in Conference Room 15, City Hall, on the first and third Thursdays of the month. 
The Commission also meets, as needed, on Tuesdays at 7:45 a.m. at 630 Garden Street for site visits to projects.
*except as noted on PC meeting schedule
Financial Disclosure Requirement Members must file a Statement of Economic Interests upon appointment, annually and when leaving the advisory group.
 AB 1234 Ethics Requirement Assembly Bill (AB) 1234 requires this commission to complete AB 1234 Ethics Training no later than one year after the first day of service and then the training course must be completed once every two years thereafter.  
Compensation $50 per meeting attended.
Staff Allison DeBusk, Senior Planner,
Community Development Department,
(805) 564-5470 x5509
Reference City Charter Sections 800 - 806; Municipal Code Sections 2.08.020.H, 2.13.070, 27.03.010, 28.06.010, and 30.200.030; Ordinance No. 5160

Last Updated: Jun 9, 2020
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