Ventura County Local Coastal Program Update

The County of Ventura is amending the Local Coastal Program (LCP), which is the document that defines the County’s goals, policies, programs, and land use regulations for the coastal zone. The focus of this update is to achieve conformance with state and federal laws and with current County and California Coastal Commission standards. All work is funded through a federal grant from the Coastal Impact Assistance Program (CIAP). This webpage includes updates to the LCP-amendment process which can be accessed by clicking on the following links:

  1. Introduction
  2. What’s New – Upcoming Meetings, Public Review Documents
  3. Existing Local Coastal Program
  4. LCP Maps

LCP amendments are being made in the following phases:

  • Phase 1 was certified by the California Coastal Commission in February 2013. It included amendments to the Coastal Zoning Ordinance (CZO) that address regulatory clarifications and minor policy changes that bring the CZO into conformance with current state and federal standards, allow for more efficient processing of coastal development permits, and acknowledge technological changes that occurred since the CZO was originally adopted in the 1980’s.

  • Phase 2A was adopted by the Board of Supervisors on June 21, 2016 and is currently before the Coastal Commission for certification. It includes policy modifications to the Coastal Area Plan (CAP) and CZO in seven topic areas: archaeological/paleontological resources, filming, parking, public noticing, signs, tree protection and water efficient landscaping. (Case No. PL12-0158)

  • Phase 2B is currently active. It includes policy modifications in three topics: Coastal Trail, Wireless Facilities, and Civil and Administrative Penalties. These topics are scheduled for public review in August 2016, and the tentative Planning Commission hearing date is October 20, 2016. Click HERE to find out more about upcoming meetings or available public review documents. (Case No. PL12-0158)

  • Phase 2C includes one topic, Environmentally Sensitive Habitat Areas, or ESHA. Proposed LCP amendments are currently under development, and this topic is tentatively scheduled for public review in late 2016. (Case No. PL12-0158)


Land use development in the Coastal Zone (click here for map links) is governed by the terms and conditions of the Ventura County LCP which consists of the Coastal Area Plan (CAP), the Coastal Zoning Ordinance (CZO), and two Categorical Exclusion Orders – all of which are subject to the California Coastal Act (Pub. Res. Code § 30000 et seq.) and corresponding Coastal Regulations (14 Cal. Code of Regs. § 13000 et seq.).

Since it was first enacted in 1983, amendments were made to the CZO to address specific land use policy issues (e.g. second dwelling units and camps). For example in 2011, the Board adopted new policies/standards for reasonable accommodation as a part of the Housing Element (Coastal Act § 30510 et seq.).

The Categorical Exclusion Order was incorporated into the CZO in 1987. The Categorical Exclusion Order is a legislative action enacted by the Coastal Commission in accordance with § 30610 of the Coastal Act. It exempts certain categories of development from Coastal Development Permit requirements because they have no possibility of causing environmental impacts. The Categorical Exclusion Order pre-empts the County’s Coastal Zoning Ordinance, which means that the regulations enacted by the order apply regardless of whether or not they are integrated in the local zoning ordinance.

LCP amendments are an extensive process. First, the amendments must be prepared and approved by the local jurisdiction, and as part of its approval process, the local government adopts a resolution stating that the amendment will become effective automatically upon certification by the Coastal Commission. Next, the ordinance is presented to the Coastal Commission. If the ordinance is certified by the Coastal Commission, the following steps must be completed before the ordinance becomes effective:

  1. The local government must complete any required follow-up actions.
  2. The Executive Director (ED) of the Coastal Commission must determine, in writing, that these actions are legally adequate.
  3. The Coastal Commission must concur with the ED’s determination.

What’s New?

Phase 2B is Available for Public Review

The following draft amendments are available for review and comment by clicking on the links provided below:

Coastal residents, business owners, and other interested members of the public are invited to public outreach meetings to review and discuss the proposed amendments for the Coastal Trail, civil and administrative penalties, and wireless communication facilities. These meetings will be conducted in August 2016 and are listed below. Public comments are due by August 31, 2016. Please call the case planner, Aaron Engstrom at (805) 654-2936 with questions. Comments can be e-mailed to the case planner Aaron Engstrom at or sent via mail to:

County of Ventura
C/O RMA-Planning Division L-1740
Aaron Engstrom
800 S. Victoria Avenue
Ventura, CA 93009-1740

Phase 2B Public Outreach Meetings

In August 2016, public outreach meetings will be held to review and discuss proposed Phase 2B amendments to the LCP which include the Coastal Trail, civil and administrative penalties, and wireless communication facilities. (Note: the meetings will NOT include the ESHA regulations, which are under preparation for Phase 2C.) Citizens who would like to learn about the Phase 2B LCP amendments are invited to attend any of the following outreach meetings:

  • North Coast: August 18, 2016, between 6:30 and 8:00 PM at Fire Station 25 (located at the intersection of the northbound Highway 101 “Seacliff” off-ramp and Pacific Coast Highway)

  • South Coast: August 23, 2016, between 6:30 and 8:00 PM at Fire Station 56 in Malibu (located on PCH, east of Yerba Buena Beach)

  • Central Coast: August 24, 2016, between 6:30 and 8:00 PM at the Carpenter Community Center (located at 550 Park Ave, Port Hueneme, CA 93041). This meeting will also include an explanation of recently adopted regulations / Central Coast meeting only (Board of Supervisors’ request)

  • Special Stakeholder Meeting (Coastal Trail Focused): August 19, between 4:00 and 5:30 PM at the Ventura County Government Center, Hall of Administration, Multi-Purpose Room #344 (located at 800 South Victoria Ave, Ventura, CA 93009). This meeting is for recreationalists and members of organizations who would use the Coastal Trail, such as hikers and cyclists.

Community and stakeholder group involvement is strongly encouraged. If you would like to be added to our email list, please contact the case planner Aaron Engstrom at

Phase 2A is Nearing Completion

Phase 2A (Case No. PL12-0158) was adopted by the board of Supervisors on June 21, 2016 and is currently before the Coastal Commission for certification. It includes amendments for the following subjects: Archaeological/Paleontological Resources, Filming, Signs, Parking and Loading Requirements, Tree Protection, Water Efficient Landscaping, and Notice Requirements.

On June 30, 2016, Ventura County submitted a formal LCP amendment request to the California Coastal Commission for final approval and certification. A hearing before the Coastal Commission has not been scheduled, however, Ventura County Planning requested that this project be heard during the Coastal Commission's local hearing venue in Ventura which is scheduled for December 7-9, 2016. This website will be updated when a Coastal Commission hearing is scheduled for Phase 2A.

The Phase 2A amendments can be accessed by clicking on any of the links provided below.

Please contact case planner Jennifer Welch ( at (805) 654-2465 with questions regarding Phase 2A.

Existing Local Coastal Plan

See the existing Ventura County Planning documents for the LCP here:

Coastal Maps

Please check back to this website to find the latest information.