Agenda Item No. 5.1 Lead Agency Coachella Valley

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Agenda Item No. 5.1 Lead Agency Coachella Valley Powered By Docstoc
					Agenda Item No.: 5.1                                      Lead Agency: Coachella Valley
Area Plans: Western Coachella Valley,                     Association of Governments
Eastern Coachella Valley, REMAP, The Pass,                CVAG Representative: John Wohlmuth,
And East County Desert Area                               Executive Director
Zoning: Multiple
Supervisorial District(s): 3, 4, and 5
County Liaison: Carolyn Syms Luna, EPD
Planning Commission: September 19, 2007


In their capacity as lead agency, the Coachella Valley Association of Governments (CVAG) Executive
Committee on September 10, 2007, approved the Final Re-circulated Coachella Valley Multiple Species
Habitat Conservation Plan/Natural Community Conservation Plan (CVMSHCP) and certified the associated
Final re-circulated Environmental Impact Report. The Executive Committee established a deadline for
permittees to adopt the plan by October 31, 2007.

The CVMSHCP has been underway for more than 12 years. The Planning Commission considered the
CVMSHCP on March 8, 2006, and April 19, 2006, and forwarded the CVMSHCP to the Board of
Supervisors for action. In June 2006, the city of Desert Hot Springs decided not to participate in the
CVMSHCP, causing the plan to be revised and re-circulated.

The Final re-circulated CVMSHCP excludes the City of Desert Hot Springs as a permittee and includes
coverage for the proposed Morongo Wash Flood Control facility. The CVMSHCP will ultimately conserve
over 240,000 acres of open space and protect 27 plant and animal species. Some of the benefits of
having the plan in place are as follows:

   1.     Assures critical freeway and freeway interchange projects can be built without delays
          resulting from endangered species conflicts;
   2.     Offers certainty for the business community, ultimately making the Coachella Valley a more
          attractive place for businesses to relocate or expand;
   3.     Preserves the Coachella Valley’s native desert wildlife and creates a magnificent system of
          open space parks, trails and reserves;
   4.     Safeguards significant habitat linkages and wildlife corridors that enable animals to move
          safely from one habitat area to another; and
   5.     By providing comprehensive compliance with federal and state endangered species laws, the
          Plan not only safeguards the desert’s natural heritage for future generations, it benefits the
          quality of life in the Coachella Valley.


Forward the CVMSHCP to the Board of Supervisors for their consideration.