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Central Coast Section News

Community Planning Assistance Team Completes Strategy for Downtown Revitalization
July 23, 2017

APA California has successfully completed its first Community Planning Assistance Team (CPAT) project.  The project was conducted for the small Central Valley city of Kingsburg, which requested assistance in preparing a revitalization strategy for its downtown. The results of this project are available within the report A Strategy for Downtown Kingsberg. It is the Hope of CPAT, that other municipalities will make use of their help in the future.

 As an APA Member, or fan of APA, consider spreading the word to municipalities and community groups who are in need of pro bono planning assistance. The program description and application form are on the California CPAT portion of the APACA website. Our members can also volunteer through the website.

Content and report provided by Bob Paternoster 

PDF icon A Strategy for Downtown Kingsberg
2020 Census Local Update of Census Addresses Operation to Begin
July 3, 2017

Starting in July, governments around the country will start the process of ensuring the accuracy of their address lists through the 2020 Census Local Update of Census Addresses operation. LUCA is a voluntary, once-a-decade opportunity for governments to add, correct or delete addresses on the lists and maps used to conduct the decennial census. An accurate and complete census helps governments plan for future infrastructure, program and service needs.

 On July 14, the U.S. Census Bureau will begin mailing invitation letters and registration forms to approximately 39,000 tribal, state and local governments across the nation to encourage them to participate in LUCA. This operation is the only opportunity governments have to review and improve the Census Bureau’s residential address list before the 2020 Census.

The Census Bureau relies on a complete and accurate address list to reach every living quarter and associated population for inclusion in the 2020 Census. Participation in LUCA helps ensure an accurate decennial census count in communities across the nation.


LUCA Participation

All LUCA participants receive:

  • A complete census address list for their jurisdiction to review and update
  • A list that contains the Census Bureau’s count of residential addresses for each census block within their government for reference
  • Census Bureau maps

Promotional workshops are underway, and starting in October, training workshops will offer “hands-on” experience using the LUCA materials. Self-training aids and webinars will also be available through the LUCA website. Beginning in February 2018, registered participants will receive materials to review the Census Bureau’s address list for their jurisdiction, and they will have 120 days to return their updates to the Census Bureau. Other LUCA milestones and information can be found in the 2020 Census detailed LUCA Information Guide.


Road to the 2020 Census

The goal of the 2020 Census is to count everyone once, only once, and in the right place. The Census Bureau is using expert resources and experience in and out of the government to make the 2020 Census a success. As census operations and testing move forward, the Census Bureau will continue to improve its innovations using mobile and geospatial technology, administrative records and self-response via the internet.

PDF icon LUCA Graphic
AICP Amnesty Program
June 26, 2017 to September 30, 2017

In an effort to encourage the retention of members whose membership may have lapsed due to the economic downturn, the AICP Commission is offering a special amnesty program. The program offers eligible former AICP members whose memberships lapsed between January 1, 2010, and December 31, 2012, the opportunity to reinstate AICP membership without retaking the AICP Certification Exam.  

Eligible members have until September 30th, 2017 to complete the amnesty program requirements and reinstate their AICP status. Details available at planning.org/membership

County of Ventura Invites Public to Participate in General Plan Update
June 2, 2017

A Planning Commission Work Session No. 2 will be held on Thursday, June 8, 2017 at 5:30 PM in the Hearing Room of the Board of Supervisors, County Government Center, Hall of Administration, 800 South Victoria Avenue, Ventura, CA.

The General Plan Update team and project consultant, Mintier Harnish, will facilitate a Planning Commission Work Session to present and discuss the following:

  • Results from community outreach presented in the Assets, Issues and Opportunities Summary Report
  • General Plan Update Draft Background Report 
  • Input received to date from General Plan Update Focus Groups and the public on the Draft Background Report
  • Proposed Vision and Guiding Principles for the General Plan Update
  • Planning Commission input on items presented

For more details, visit the County General Plan Update website at vc2040.org

Paul Wack, AICP, Receives Impact Award at the 2017 Central Coast APA Awards
May 31, 2017

On April 29, 2017, Paul Wack, AICP, received an Impact Award from the Central Coast Section of the American Planning Association, California (APACA).  The Impact Award was awarded to Paul for his Dedication and Commitment to the Planning Profession as a Professor, Colleague, Professional, Mentor, Volunteer, Contributor, and Friend”.  The Impact Award is a newly created award created by the Central Coast APACA and is the inaugural award for this type of honor. The Impact Award was given to Paul at the annual Planning Awards Event held by the Central Coast Section in beautiful Santa Barbara at the Cabrillo Arts Pavilion Center in East Beach. 

Each year, the annual Awards Event is held in one of the three tri-counties of the Section; Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, and Ventura, rotating each year.  The celebration to honor him marked a “retirement” from teaching – a profession he has had for nearly 40 years.  However, he has repeatedly stated that this is just a “reload” while he follows new dreams and pursues other endeavors to spend more time travelling, time with friends, and even more volunteering.  He is a strong supporter of American Planning Association and Association of Environmental Professionals as well as the California Planning Foundation which awards scholarships to students in the planning field. 

An acoustical duo, Blue Hotel Room, played Paul’s favorite tunes while guests enjoyed the cocktail hour, with the final song of the hour was John Denver’s “Rocky Mountain High”, Paul’s overall favorite songwriter and song.  The tribute started after the planning awards portion of the evening and included speakers that spoke about his years of commitment and service.  Speakers spoke about his roles as a professor, mentor, colleague, volunteer, and a friend. 

Mustaches on sticks were one of the party favors to pay homage to Paul and his mustache that he has had for as long as anyone can remember.  Another party favor was a green pen to everyone attending as Paul is infamously known as using green pen to grade his papers.  Guests used those green pens to write notes to Pual, wishing him well on the adventures ahead of him. 

Paul accepted his award to a standing ovation and was visibly moved by the evening's events.  He spoke about how he got started in planning while taking a geography class… “Three days into college I found a connection between maps and planning, thanks to my geography professor. My fate was set.  I found a career with people who cared about the land, other people, and the future. And I found a profession that brought me back home to the Central Coast, and all of you here became my family.  And I still get to play with maps!”

In the future, the award will be known as the “Paul Wack Impact Award” and will be given to recipients, as warranted, that have provided an extraordinary impact to the Central Coast APACA Section.

2017 Central Coast APACA Award Winners
May 31, 2017

On April 29, 2017, the annual APACA, Central Coast, Planning Awards Event was held in beautiful Santa Barbara at the Cabrillo Arts Pavilion Center in East Beach.  Each year the event is held in one of the three tri-counties of the Section; Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, and Ventura, rotating each year.  Guests enjoyed hosted cocktails, beautiful music played by Blue Motel Room (go see them every Sunday at James Joyce), while watching the sunset on the beach.  Dinner was served while friends and colleagues continued to get reacquainted.  Five jurors presented the awards; there were seven Awards of Excellence and 2 Awards of Merit.  The Awards of Excellence awards are eligible to move on to the California Planning Awards so keep an eye out for them at the California APA Conference.  This year, we honored Paul Wack with an Impact Award.  Paul Wack has been part of the Central Coast Section for over 40 years and has been a professor, mentor, and colleague that has been teaching throughout California but mostly Cal Poly SLO and UCSB (See related story).  These are the 2017 winners:




Gaviota Coast Plan

County of Santa Barbara, Planning and Development



Energy and Climate Action Plan

County of Santa Barbara, Planning and Development



Los Alamos Pedestrian Circulation and Parking Plan

County of Santa Barbara Planning and Development and County of Santa Barbara Public Works Department



Ventura Botanical Gardens, Master Plan

City of Ventura Community Development Department and Ventura Botanical Gardens, Inc.



City of San Luis Obispo, Skate Park

City of San Luis Obispo Parks and Recreation and RRM Design Group



Midtown Ventura Wellness District, Urban Design Concept Plan

2016 MCRP Studio 553, City and Regional Planning, California State Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo

Instructor: Vicente Del Rio



Portside Ventura Harbor, Mixed-Use Project

City of Ventura, Community Development Department; Ventura Port District; Sondermann Partners





City of Lompoc, Sign Code

Lisa Wise Consulting



Hancock Terrace Apartments

The Towbes Group

City of Agoura Hills Releases RFP for City Planner
May 19, 2017 to June 2, 2017

The City of Agoura Hills is seeking a qualified professional city planner to augment development review services of the Planning Department. Below/attached is a Request for Proposal for a City Planning Consultant. We hope you will consider responding to this proposal.

Should you have any questions, please feel free to contact Allison Cook, Assistant Planning Director, at (818) 597-7310 or at acook@ci.agoura-hills.ca.us. Proposals are due no later than June 2nd, 2017.

PDF icon RFP - City Planning Consultant (2017) (5-12-17).pdf
Student Perspective | Venoco Bankruptcy
May 5, 2017

Submission by Sydney Bartone, Student Representative for the Central Coast Section of APA California

The sensitive Gaviota Coastline is in need of protection from urban development. However this is not the only threat it faces, oil production off the coast and its frequent spills has also had detrimental effects. One of the companies most responsible for oil production off the coast of Santa Barbara also happens to be one of the largest oil producing companies in California, a company called Venoco LLC.  To many people’s surprise it was recently released that Venoco has filed for bankruptcy. This means that the portion of the oil-rich Santa Barbara Channel that has long been a source of revenue for the state and county will see production stop now that the California State Lands Commission is taking over Venoco LLC's interest in the South Ellwood Field leases (located near UCSB).  The bankruptcy is said to be caused by a persistent slump in crude markets as well as a significant spill at Refugio Beach State Park in 2015 due to a pipeline rupture. Venoco is known for its ability to successfully drill for oil in environmentally sensitive areas such as the Santa Barbara Coast. However, the company filed for bankruptcy listing with as much as 1 billion dollars in debt. Noteworthy is the fact that Venoco is not alone. Over 50 oil and gas producers have gone bankrupt in the last two years owing a total of more than 17 billion dollars. Though a sad situation for the Venoco company, environmentalists may view this as a feat as oil production off the Santa Barbara coast will at least temporarily decrease. 

Student Update | Gaviota Coast Movie Screenings in Santa Barbara
May 5, 2017 to June 30, 2017

Gaviota Coast Movies

Submission by Sydney Bartone, Student Representative for the Central Coast Section of APA California

Last month an environmental nonprofit group, the Gaviota Coast Conservancy, hosted a wonderful event after the showing of two films in the Santa Barbara International Film Festival titled, “Gaviota the End of Southern California” by Shaw Leonard and “Losing Ground” by UCSB student Trevor Lestak. The films completely sold out the Lobero Theater with over a hundred people still waiting in line. These movies provided a glimpse of the incredible Gaviota Coast and helped to spread awareness about the need to protect it. The Gaviota Coast, located just north of UCSB and stretches for 76 miles, constitutes about 15% of Southern California’s coast yet contains 50% of its remaining rural coastline. This is a concerning statistic! Currently, there are five large ranches on the eastern Gaviota Coast that are proposing large residential developments which would bring malls, hotels and numerous housing developments to the sensitive Gaviota bluffs. The Gaviota Coast represents the only coastal Mediterranean ecosystem in North America and is a home for many threatened and endangered species as well as five state and county parks. The Gaviota Coast Conservancy as well as Santa Barbara County planners and staff are working with local land owners and citizens to limit development and extend the California Coastal Trail to improve public access. Just last year the Gaviota Coast Plan was passed which amends the County’s Comprehensive Plan and will again be reviewed this year. The Gaviota Coast Plan’s goal is to offer relief for small scale, sustainable agricultural endeavors while still protecting the coastline’s natural resources. UCSB will be hosting these films later this month so keep your eyes peeled and come learn more about this unique landscape located in our backyard!


APA California Seeking Position Letters on Legislation
April 30, 2017

The APA’s California Chapter is monitoring legislation moving through committee hearings in Sacramento. Letters in support of APA’s positions on the bills are welcome. Please visit the Cal APA legislation page to review the most important bills and APA’s position letters at  apacalifornia.org/legislation/legislative-review-teams/position-letters

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