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Application Background

In May 2009 the City received a development application for the proposed Saltworks project. At its meeting on August 10, 2009 the City Council voted to initiate the process for evaluation of a potential General Plan amendment that allows the City to proceed with hiring consultants, preparing detailed analyses, commissioning technical studies, and developing a thorough community involvement and public environmental review process (the City will recoup all expenses from the developer for these and other resources needed to evaluate the proposal).

In mid-September, the City hired the firm of Hart Howerton to assist City staff in the review process for the Saltworks development proposal. Included in Hart Howerton’s tasks was to review the Saltworks application and identify issues that required further review. A Peer Review Team, led by Hart Howerton and consisting of expert consultants and city staff, determined that three main topics, jurisdictional issues, water supply/demand, and transportation, required more detailed review. They are identified as “Tier One Topics” in the review process.

The Peer Review Team prepared Summary Reports on the Tier One Topics for the City Council’s review at the Feb. 1, 2010 Study Session. The conclusion reached in all three of the Tier One Topics Summary Reports is that the Saltworks application does not contain fundamental insurmountable issues that would prevent the continued processing of the application, including the initiation of a CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act) review.

It should be very clearly noted that the acceptance and review of the Saltworks development application does not constitute an approval or denial of the project. In fact, it is only the beginning of an in-depth process of analyses, review, and consideration.

The City will continue to make details about the application process, required studies, and schedule for the review process available on this web site at


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