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 – Phase 2B Planning Commission Hearing on October 20
  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 early 2017. (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 LCP Amendments - Planning Commission Hearing

The following staff report and exhibits were prepared for the hearing before the Ventura County Planning Commission on October 20, 2016 at 8:30 a.m. The documents are available by clicking on the links provided below:

All interested persons are invited to attend and be heard at the Planning Commission hearing on Thursday, October 20, 2016 at 8:30 a.m. in the Board of Supervisors Hearing Room, County Government Center, Hall of Administration, 800 South Victoria Avenue, Ventura, California, 93009. In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, if you need assistance to participate in this meeting, please call (805) 654 2805. Note: From time to time, hearings are cancelled or rescheduled. We recommend that you contact the Case Planner to confirm the public hearing date one day prior.

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 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.