NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN that at 11:00 a.m., Wednesday, January 6, 2021, the Local Agency Formation Commission of Santa Cruz County (LAFCO) will hold a protest hearing regarding the fire consolidation approved by LAFCO on November 4, 2020. The proposed terms and conditions for the proposal are set forth in the LAFCO Resolution No. 2020-30.
“Central & Aptos/La Selva Fire Consolidation” (LAFCO Project No. DC 20-02): The consolidation involves two fire districts and encompasses approximately 55 square miles. The proposal area is located east of the City of Santa Cruz, west of Watsonville’s city limits, and includes the City of Capitola. If recorded, the consolidation will preserve the current levels of service, maintain local demand expectations, and continue existing funding sources. This Notice and all related documents (staff report, resolution, maps, etc.) are available on the LAFCO website. If you have issues accessing information on the LAFCO website, please contact LAFCO at 831-454-2055.
Protest Hearing Format
Due to COVID-19, this meeting will be conducted as a teleconference pursuant to the provisions of the Governor’s Executive Orders N-25-20 and N-29-20, which suspend certain requirements of the Ralph M. Brown Act. Members of the public are encouraged to observe the shelter-in-place order and participate remotely. Instructions to participate remotely are available in the January 6th Agenda and Agenda Packet, which are available on the LAFCO website.
Who can File a Protest?
Landowners and registered voters within the proposal area may file a written protest using the official LAFCO Protest Form. Landowners and registered voters must include their name, the address of the land within the proposal area, and the Assessor Parcel Number. Agents submitting protest on behalf of the landowner/registered voter must attach proper authorization. This may include written consent of the landowner/registered voter, written consent from a trustee of property placed into a trust, signature authorization or majority shareholder consent of a corporation or LLC, or other suitable documentation. See Government Code Section 56704, 56708, and 56710 for more information.
Where to Get a Protest Form?
If you wish to protest the fire consolidation, you first need to obtain a Protest Form by either:
- Downloading the form from the LAFCO website: https://www.santacruzlafco.org/forms/ (refer to Forms 12 and 13); or
- Calling the LAFCO office at 831-454-2055 or emailing LAFCO at email@example.com to have a form mailed to you.
How to Submit Protest Form?
Because the Protest Hearing is being conducted virtually, written protests cannot be submitted or presented at the virtual hearing. Therefore, all protests must be made by filling out a Protest Form and submitting them:
- In person at the LAFCO office prior to the conclusion of the protest hearing on January 6, 2021. The LAFCO office is located at 701 Ocean Street, Room 318-D, Santa Cruz, CA 95060; or
- By mail addressed to LAFCO at 701 Ocean Street, Room 318-D, Santa Cruz, CA 95060. If your mailed protest form is postmarked by January 6, 2021 and received by LAFCO within four (4) days of a January 6, 2021 postmark, we will process, verify, and count that protest.
The written protest must be signed and dated during the official protest period, which begins on December 4, 2020 and ends on January 6, 2021. Any protest without a date, bearing a date prior to December 4, 2020, received in-person after the conclusion of the Protest Hearing, or postmarked after January 6, 2021 and not received by LAFCO within four (4) days of a January 6, 2021 postmark, shall be disregarded for purposes of determining the value of any written protests. Protests cannot be accepted by fax or email.
How will the Protest be Evaluated?
Within 30 days following the conclusion of the Protest Hearing, the Executive Officer will make a determination on whether the fire consolidation is terminated or approved, as follows:
- Terminate the proposal if protest is received from landowners who own 50% or more of the total value within the consolidation area;
- Terminate the proposal if protest is received from registered voters who reside in the consolidation area reaches beyond 50%; or
- Approve the proposal if written protest is less than 50% of the landowners and/or registered voters.
A resolution, finalizing the protest results, will be considered by the Commission during the February 3rd, 2021 LAFCO Meeting. If you have any questions regarding this Notice, please contact the LAFCO office at 831-454-2055 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Joe A. Serrano, Executive Officer
Date: December 1, 2020