LoCOBot / Friday, May 26 @ 3:05 p.m. / Agendizer
Humboldt County Planning Commission
June 1, 2023, 6 p.m.
A. CALL TO ORDER / SALUTE TO FLAG
B. COMMISSIONERS PRESENT
C. AGENDA MODIFICATIONS
D. PUBLIC COMMENT ON NON-AGENDA ITEMS:
E. CONSENT CALENDAR
1. Review and approval of the March 2, 2023, Action Summary.
2. Review and approval of the May 18, 2023, Action Summary.
3. Cali’s Finest Gardens, LLC Conditional Use Permit Assessor Parcel Numbers (APN) 210-072-009 Record No.
The Humboldt County Planning Commission will consider a Conditional Use Permit for Cali's Finest Gardens, LLC. The permit would allow for 30,000 square feet of outdoor cannabis cultivation using light-deprivation techniques in greenhouses without supplemental lights. The proposal also includes an ancillary propagation area, water sourced from existing and proposed rain catchment ponds, and power from an existing solar array and generators for emergencies. A full processing facility with ADA bathroom and septic is also proposed with on-site employee housing. Planning staff is recommending that only 3,000 square feet of propagation be permitted. The project has been requested to be continued to the July 6, 2023 Planning Commission meeting at the request of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.
… or, as an episode of Seinfeld!
Title: The Cannabis Conundrum
Opening scene: Jerry, Elaine, George, and Kramer are gathered in Jerry’s apartment.
Jerry: “What’s the deal with cannabis cultivation permits?”
Elaine: “What are you talking about?”
Jerry: “I just read that the Planning Commission is recommending that only 3,000 sf of propagation is permitted for Cali’s Finest Gardens, LLC.”
George: “Who cares about some cannabis farm?”
Kramer: “Are you kidding, George? That’s like a gold mine.”
Jerry: “But why are they limiting the propagation area?”
Elaine: “Maybe it’s an issue with water usage or electricity.”
Jerry: “Speaking of electricity, did you guys see that viral video of the guy who used his Tesla to power his house during a power outage?”
Kramer: “Yeah, that guy’s a genius.”
George: “I don’t see what the big deal is. I’d rather just wait it out with some candles.”
Elaine: “Well, I don’t think cannabis cultivation would thrive on candles.”
Jerry: “We should go to the Planning Commission meeting and see what’s really going on.”
Cut to: the Planning Commission meeting where the gang is sitting in the audience.
Jerry: “I heard you’re limiting the propagation area for Cali’s Finest Gardens, LLC.”
Commissioner: “Yes, we’re concerned about the amount of water usage.”
Elaine: “But they have a rain catchment pond.”
Commissioner: “True, but we’re still evaluating the impact on the local watersheds.”
Kramer: “You know, I’ve been thinking about getting into the cannabis business myself.”
George: “What do you know about farming, Kramer?”
Kramer: “I have a green thumb, George.”
Jerry: “I don’t think that’s enough to start a business.”
Elaine: “Besides, the regulations are pretty strict.”
Cut to: Jerry’s apartment where they are discussing the meeting.
Jerry: “Are you really considering starting a cannabis farm, Kramer?”
Kramer: “Absolutely, Jerry. That’s where the money is.”
George: “I think I’ll stick to my day job.”
Elaine: “Me too.”
Jerry: “I don’t know, I feel like we could make a pretty good team.”
End scene: The gang laughing and discussing their potential cannabis venture.
4. Peaksview, Inc. Special Permit Modification Application Number
5. New Earth Farms, LLC, Special Permit Assessor Parcel Numbers (APN) 524-072-010 Record No.
The County of Humboldt is having a meeting about a new cannabis cultivation project by New Earth Farms LLC. They are seeking a permit for 32,500 square feet of new commercial cannabis cultivation and a reduction in setback to Public Lands. The total area of cultivation on-site will be 42,500 square feet with an additional 3,000 square foot nursery. They will use rainwater catchment for irrigation and energy from PG&E renewable sources. The Planning Commission has recommended continuing the project to the next meeting at the request of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. The contact person for questions is Megan Acevedo.
Title: Harvest of Danger in Humboldt
Detective: Detective Mason Wright
Setting: Willow Creek, Humboldt County
Protagonist: Megan Acevedo, Associate Planner
Megan Acevedo, the Associate Planner in the Planning and Building Department of Humboldt County, receives a request from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to continue the meeting concerning the special permit for New Earth Farms LLC to the July 6th, 2023 Planning Commission meeting.
As Megan prepares for the meeting, she receives an anonymous phone call warning her about danger related to the New Earth Farms LLC application. She takes the call seriously and tries to investigate the situation by going to the New Earth Farms LLC's property. There, she finds unusual activity and decides to report it to the owner, Second 707 Realty LLC. The owner assures her that everything is under control, so Megan leaves the property.
As the meeting approaches, a body is found near the New Earth Farms LLC property. The victim is identified as Ryan Lee, the owner of a competing cannabis business. Megan begins to suspect that the murder is connected to the New Earth Farms LLC application.
With Detective Mason Wright's help, they begin to piece together the evidence. They uncover that Second 707 Realty LLC is involved in organized crime and that they had a motive to eliminate Ryan Lee as he posed a threat to their business. Furthermore, they find out that New Earth Farms LLC was just a front for cannabis trafficking and that the proposed cultivation was just a cover.
As Megan and Detective Wright prepare to take down Second 707 Realty LLC, they discover that they have been under surveillance and are faced with danger. With the help of local law enforcement, they bust Second 707 Realty LLC and uncover their involvement in multiple criminal activities. Megan and Detective Wright close the case and ensure the safety of the community.
In the end, Megan realizes the true nature of the dangers of cannabis cultivation and vows to be more vigilant and thorough in her future work.
6. Enchanted Forest, LLC, Conditional Use Permit Assessor Parcel Numbers (APN) 524-114-011 Record No.
The Humboldt County Planning Commission is considering whether to approve a Conditional Use Permit for Enchanted Forest, LLC in the Willow Creek area. The permit would allow for pre-existing outdoor cannabis cultivation and ancillary propagation on 28,348 square feet of land. The cultivation will use irrigation from a permitted well on an adjacent parcel and will utilize up to three employees. Power will be provided by a low decibel gasoline generator, but the project is conditioned to obtain 100% of power from PG&E or other renewable source by 2026 and will utilize the generator for emergency backup purposes only. The project must adhere to several conditions related to energy, fire hazard, access, timber conversion, and Tribal Cultural Resource Coordination. The project is consistent with the General Plan and Zoning Ordinance, and the Planning Commission is recommended to adopt a resolution approving the Conditional Use Permit with the recommended conditions of approval.
… or, as a World War I infantryman's letter home to his sweetheart!
My dearest Jane,
I hope you receive this letter soon - we are under heavy fire from German artillery, and I fear that my time may be limited. I miss you so terribly, and my thoughts are with you constantly.
I wish I could tell you more about our situation, but the truth is that it changes constantly. We never know when the enemy will strike, or where the next shell will fall. All we can do is hold our positions and hope for the best.
I remember the day I left for war, and how difficult it was to say goodbye to you. But I also remember the hope that filled my heart as I thought about coming home to you, safe and sound. That hope is what keeps me going, even in the toughest of times.
I pray that this war will end soon, and that we can be reunited once again. Until then, know that I love you with all my heart, and that you are never far from my thoughts.
Staff Report • Attachment 1 - Resolution • Attachment 1A - Conditions of Approval • Attachment 1B - Cultivation & Operations Plan • Attachment 1C - Water Usage • Attachment 1D - Site Plan • Attachment 2. - Location Maps • Attachment 2A - Watershed Map • Attachment 3 - CEQA Addendum • Attachment 4 - Applicant's Evidence in Support of Required Findings • Attachment 4A - Notice of Applicability • Attachment 4B - Site Management Plan • Attachment 4C - Water & River Access Agreement • Attachment 4D - Well Assessment Report • Attachment 4E - Draft Streambed Alteration Agreement • Attachment 4F - Restocking Plan • Attachment 4G - Property Survey • Attachment 4H - Road Evaluation • Attachment 4I - Evidence of Pre-Existing Cultivation Area • Attachment 5 - Referral Agency Comments and Recommendations • Attachment 5A - Building Referral • Attachment 5B - Environmental Health Referral • Attachment 5C - Public Works Land Use Division Referral • Attachment 5D - CALFIRE Referral • Attachment 6A - Cultivation Area Verification • Attachment 6B - Post-2016 Timber Conversion Exhibit
7. Knapek Zone Reclassification Assessor Parcel Numbers (APN) 107-091-007 and 107-096-002 Record No.
The County of Humboldt is considering a request to rezone approximately 75 acres on two properties in the Honeydew area from Agriculture Exclusive with a 160 acre minimum parcel size to the Timberland Production Zone. The reclassification is consistent with the General Plan policies and the intended land use of timber production. The project has been reviewed by the Forestry Review Committee and referral agencies, and no major concerns have been raised. The County Planning staff believes that the project will not cause any significant environmental impact and can be exempted from CEQA. The Planning Commission is recommended to approve the project with conditions.
… or, as a Dungeons & Dragons campaign!
In this Dungeons and Dragons campaign, the players are hired by Brent and Karla Knapek to protect their newly acquired timberland from a group of bandits who have been raiding local logging camps. The players will journey through the Honeydew area and encounter various obstacles such as dangerous wildlife, treacherous terrain, and hostile creatures. Along the way, they will also have to gather information about the bandits' whereabouts and their strengths and weaknesses.
As they get closer to the bandits' hideout, the players will discover that the bandits are actually a group of rogue druids who have been enraged by the logging activities in the area. They want to protect the forest and its inhabitants, and they see the Knapeks as a threat to their cause.
The players will have to decide whether to side with the Knapeks and protect their property or try to negotiate with the druids and find a peaceful solution. If they choose to fight, they will face not only the druids but also their powerful nature magic. If they choose to negotiate, they will have to find a way to convince the druids that the Knapeks are not a threat to the forest and its inhabitants.
Regardless of their choice, the players will face challenging encounters and moral dilemmas that will test their skills and their convictions. In the end, they will have to live with the consequences of their actions and decide what kind of heroes they want to be in a world where the balance between nature and civilization is constantly being challenged.
Staff Report • Attachment 1 - Resolution • Attachment 1A - Conditions of Approval • Attachment 2 - Timber Management Plan • Attachment 3 - Rezone Ordinance • Attachment 4A - Location Map 06.08.2022 • Attachment 4B - Maps • Attachment 4C - Rezone Map • Attachment 5 - Referral Agency Comments and Recommendations
8. Orick Community Services District Community Tank Replacement Project - Tank 1 Replacement Coastal Development Permit, Conditional Use Permit, General Plan Conformance Review, and Special Permit. Assessor Parcel Numbers: 520-161-003 and 520-171-005 Record Number
The Orick Community Services District in Humboldt County wants to replace an existing 100,000-gallon redwood water tank with a new 100,000-gallon glass-fused bolted steel tank with a concrete foundation due to leaks and inability to withstand a seismic event. The project will include the replacement of water and electrical lines and the installation of a new supervisory control and data acquisition system. An overflow outlet is proposed that would extend approximately six feet onto an existing drainage easement. The project is exempt from CEQA, and the Humboldt County Planning Commission is recommended to approve the permits subject to recommended conditions of approval.
… or, as Star Trek fan fiction!
Captain Jean-Luc Picard sat in the captain's chair on the bridge of the USS Enterprise-D, listening as Commander Data relayed the latest news from Starfleet Command.
"Captain, we have received a transmission from the County of Humboldt on planet Earth," Data said. "They are requesting our assistance with replacing a water tank in the Orick community."
Picard raised an eyebrow. "Interesting. What kind of assistance do they need?"
"It appears that the existing tank is leaking and not designed to withstand a seismic event," Data said. "They are requesting our expertise in constructing a new tank, as well as assistance in installing a new supervisory control and data acquisition system."
Picard nodded thoughtfully. "Well, it sounds like a worthy cause. Set course for Earth, Commander."
As the Enterprise-D arrived at the Orick community, Picard and a team of engineers beamed down to the site. They were greeted by representatives from the Orick Community Services District, who showed them the existing tank and explained the scope of the project.
"It's a pleasure to have you here, Captain Picard," said Trevor Avram, the head of the district. "We could really use your help in replacing this water tank. The existing one is in dire need of replacement, and we want to make sure the new one is built to withstand any future seismic activity."
Picard nodded. "We will do everything in our power to assist you."
Over the next several weeks, the Enterprise-D crew worked closely with the Orick Community Services District to design and construct a new 100,000-gallon, glass-fused, bolted steel tank with a concrete foundation. They also installed a new supervisory control and data acquisition system on the tank.
As they worked, they got to know the members of the community and learned more about their way of life. They even had the opportunity to sample some of the local cuisine, which was both delicious and unique.
When the project was complete, the district held a ceremony to thank the Enterprise-D crew for their assistance. Picard spoke on behalf of the crew, expressing their gratitude for the opportunity to help the community.
"As Starfleet officers, we are always glad to lend a helping hand wherever it is needed," Picard said. "We were honored to work alongside the dedicated members of the Orick Community Services District, and we are proud of the work we accomplished together."
The community members cheered, and Picard smiled. As the Enterprise-D lifted off from the planet's surface, he couldn't help but feel a sense of satisfaction. It was moments like these that made him proud to be a Starfleet officer.
Staff Report • Attachment 1 - Resolution • Attachment 1A - Conditions of Approval • Attachment 1B - Site Plans • Attachment 1C - Construction Plans • Attachment 2 - Location Map • Attachment 3 - Applicant’s Evidence in Support of the Findings • Attachment 4 - California Government Code Section 65402 • Attachment 5 - Referral Agency Comments and Recommendations
F. ITEMS PULLED FROM CONSENT
G. PUBLIC HEARINGS
1. Public Hearing on the Coastal Accessory Dwelling Unit Ordinance as Modified by the California Coastal Commission; Record # LRP-2019-15873
The County of Humboldt is holding a public hearing on June 1, 2023, to discuss modifications to the Coastal Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) Ordinance. The Planning and Building Department recommends that the Planning Commission accept public comment and deliberate on the modifications presented. The modifications were suggested by the California Coastal Commission and include clarifying notice and public hearing procedures for ADUs, adding a definition of a Junior Accessory Dwelling Unit, and more. The proposed amendments are exempt from the California Environmental Quality Act. The Planning Commission can recommend modifications or not approve the ordinance if they do not find the evidence supports the required findings.
Socrates: Good morning, my fellow citizens. Today we gather to discuss the proposed Coastal Accessory Dwelling Unit Ordinance for Humboldt County. What are your thoughts on this matter?
Citizen 1: I am in favor of this ordinance and believe it is necessary to regulate the use of accessory dwelling units in the coastal zone. The modifications recently added by the California Coastal Commission will provide clarity and align with state law.
Citizen 2: I agree with Citizen 1, but I do have concerns about the addition of a deed restriction requirement preventing use of the ADU as transient habitation. This could limit the flexibility of homeowners and prevent them from subletting their property.
Planning and Building Department: We understand your concern, Citizen 2. However, this restriction is necessary to prevent illegal hotels and maintain the integrity of the residential neighborhood.
Citizen 3: I have a question about the requirement that ADUs be clustered with other existing structures to the maximum extent feasible on prime agricultural soils and timberlands. How will this be enforced?
Planning and Building Department: The enforcement of this requirement will be based on compliance with the Coastal Development Permit process. The permit process requires a review of the proposed site plan by a certified land use planner and ensures that the development is consistent with the surrounding area and the natural environment.
Socrates: It seems that the proposed modifications to the Coastal Accessory Dwelling Unit Ordinance have generated some thoughtful discussion. Are there any other concerns or questions about this proposal?
Citizen 4: I am curious about the involvement of other agencies, such as the State Department of Housing and Community Development and Tribal governments.
Planning and Building Department: Thank you for your question, Citizen 4. The involvement of these agencies is necessary to ensure that the proposed ordinance is consistent with state law and respects the sovereignty of tribal governments.
Socrates: I believe that the Planning Commission has heard a variety of feedback on this proposed ordinance, both positive and negative. Based on this discussion, what would be your recommendation?
Planning and Building Department: Our recommendation is that the Planning Commission open the public hearing, receive and consider the staff report and public comment, deliberate and comment on the draft modifications and alternatives presented, and adopt the attached Resolution recommending that the Humboldt County Board of Supervisors find that the proposed amendments are exempt from the California Environmental Quality Act pursuant to Sections 21080.5 and 21080.9 of the Public Resources Code and Sections 15250, 15251(f) and 15265 of the CEQA Guidelines, and adopt the proposed amendments to the Coastal Zoning Regulations.
Citizen 5: I agree with the Planning and Building Department's recommendation. I believe the modifications will lead to a more consistent and transparent process for the development of ADUs in the coastal zone.
Socrates: Thank you for your input, Citizen 5. It appears that there is general consensus among those present that the proposed modifications to the Coastal Accessory Dwelling Unit Ordinance are necessary and in line with state law.
At this point, I recommend that we proceed with the Planning Department's recommendation and move to the next item on our agenda. Thank you all for your participation in this important discussion.
Staff Report • Attachment 1 - PC Resolution Coastal ADU Ordinance • Attachment 2 - Ordinance_Adopting Modifications
H. REPORT FROM PLANNER
I. PLANNING COMMISSION DISCUSSION ITEMS