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Publisher's Note:This Section has been ADDED by new legislation (Ord. 10725 , adopted 5-5-2021). The text of the amendment will be incorporated below when the ordinance is codified.
(a) FEES AND DEPOSITS
The fees, deposits and hourly rate charges that pertain to land development permits and approvals from the Departments of Planning & Development Services, Public Works, Parks and Recreation and San Diego County Fire Authority are located in the following Administrative Code sections:
Planning & Development Services - Section 362.1
Public Works - Section 362.2
Parks and Recreation - Section 362.3
General Services - Section 362.4
San Diego County Fire Authority - Section 362.5
This section contains provisions for the fees, deposits and labor charges that are common to the Departments of Planning & Development Services, Public Works, and Parks and Recreation; and that pertain to land development.
1. STANDARD HOURLY RATES. All fees, deposits and labor charges shall be calculated and will be charged using the standard hourly rates set forth in Sections 362.1, 362.2, and 362.3 or as are otherwise approved by the Board of Supervisors. County personnel may bill at a Board of Supervisors approved rate to any fee or deposit account established for a project, whether or not the personnel work for the department managing the account.
3. PRE-APPLICATION DEPOSITS. Upon request, pre-application review of projects may be requested by an applicant to identify any significant issues or concerns that the applicant may want to consider before filing a formal application. The deposit collected is intended to cover County costs for the review and pre-application meeting with the applicant. Pre-application consultation shall be mandatory for all privately initiated projects under the jurisdiction of the Planning Commission or Board of Supervisors, unless waived by the processing department.
4. INTAKE DEPOSIT. An initial intake deposit shall be paid at the time of application submittal. The intake deposit shall be collected to recover actual costs related to project intake, preliminary case review, site/field visit, and all costs related to initial project analysis.
5. ESTIMATED DEPOSIT. Upon completion of initial project analysis, the applicant and project manager will discuss the scope of the project and calculate an estimated deposit(s). The estimated deposit(s) shall be calculated based on factors identified during the initial project analysis, established processing time standards, standard hourly rates and key milestones.
Estimated deposits shall be paid in advance of services performed. Estimated deposits are collected to recover actual project processing costs by key milestones and shall be paid prior to the completion of said milestones. The County may discontinue processing the requested permit and/or recommend denial of the project based on the applicant's refusal to pay the estimated deposit and all actual processing costs that may not have been included in the estimate.
6. SUBSEQUENT DEPOSITS. Unanticipated factors arising during project processing, such as, but not limited to, complexity, controversy or environmental issues which require additional project review will be conveyed to the applicant as soon as they are known. If it is determined that the deposit is insufficient to recover actual costs, the project manager will scope the work remaining on the project and calculate an additional subsequent deposit. The County may discontinue processing the requested permit and/or recommend denial of the project based on the applicant's refusal to pay the estimated deposit and all actual processing costs that may not have been included in the estimate.
7. REFUNDS. The County shall not authorize the refund of any fee paid except upon receipt of a written request by the original applicant, received not later than one year after the date of fee payment. Where a refund of a fee is requested, the amount shall be based upon work completed on standard project tasks and milestones by case type. Fee refunds of $25,000 or more must be approved by the Board of Supervisors prior to payment. Fees which are erroneously collected may be refunded without Board of Supervisors approval, regardless of amount and without the requirement that an application be submitted for the refund. Except for fees that are erroneously collected, no part of any issuance fee collected pursuant to Division 1 of Title 7 of the County Code shall be refunded.
At the completion of all tasks associated with an application for which a deposit is required and after all final documents and review are completed, the difference between the deposited amount and the actual cost shall be refunded to the applicant within 180 days.
An applicant who has paid the applicable application fee(s) and deposit(s) may withdraw the application by submitting a written request to the County. The County shall discontinue work on such application within one working day from the receipt of said request, except that the County may continue to process an application involving the violation of a County ordinance. Any unused fee(s) and deposit(s) remaining upon the withdrawal of the application shall be refunded in accordance with this section.
Final permits, documents and approvals shall not be issued until all fees and deposits are paid in full.
Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, when the applicant is owed a refund but is in deficit on a separate deposit account(s) at any County department within the Land Use and Environment Group Community Service Agency Fund, the refund may be applied by the County to the deposit account(s) in deficit as an offset, unless a different disposition of the refund is required by state law.
8. VIOLATIONS. When a violation of any County ordinance includes or results from the failure to obtain a required permit, the following requirements shall apply:
Administrative Permits: The standard fee or deposit for obtaining the permit required to correct the violation shall be collected. A violation fee in the amount of $500 shall also be collected.
All other deposit cases subject to a violation fee (as indicated by a V): The standard deposit for obtaining the permit required to correct the violation shall be collected. A violation fee shall also be collected in the amount of the standard deposit, not to exceed $1,000.
All other fee cases subject to a violation fee (as indicated by a V): The standard fee for obtaining the permit required to correct the violation shall be collected. A violation fee shall also be collected in the amount of the same standard fee amount, not to exceed $1,000.
In all cases the additional violation fee amount shall be treated as a non-refundable fee, even if the initial amount is a deposit.
9. CHARGES FOR TECHNICAL REPORTS: Information, circulars, reports of technical work, and other reports prepared by the County, when supplied to other government agencies, individuals or groups requesting copies of same, may be charged for by the County in a sum not to exceed the cost of publication and distribution of such documents.
10. FEE WAIVER FOR STRUCTURES DAMAGED OR DESTROYED BY NATURAL DISASTER. Notwithstanding the fees and deposits otherwise specified, the fees or deposits may be waived for an applicant who is rebuilding legally built structures which have been damaged or destroyed by a wildfire or other natural disaster and which are located within the boundaries of a geographic area which has been declared by resolution of the Board of Supervisors to be eligible for this fee or deposit waiver. The fee or deposit waiver shall not apply to any portion of a new structure which exceeds the square footage of the structure which is being replaced.
(c) PAYMENT OF FISH AND GAME FEES
These provisions shall apply to all projects processed by the County of San Diego for which California Department of Fish and Game fees are payable under the requirements of California Fish and Game Code Section 711.4.
Upon the receipt of a complete application and payment of all required application fees, the County of San Diego shall process said projects to the point of review where an Environmental Impact Report or a Negative Declaration has been prepared which has been advertised for public review under the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act and is ready for a project decision and/or hearing. At that time, the County shall delay its processing of the project application and provide written notice to the project applicant of the Department of Fish and Game fees, and any County handling fees, which are due and payable under California Fish and Game Code Section 711.4. Said fees shall be paid in full by the applicant in the manner set forth below. Said notice shall indicate that the Environmental Impact Report or the Negative Declaration will not be certified or adopted and the project will not go forward for a hearing and/or decision until said fees are paid.
The project applicant shall pay the specified fees in full and provide a copy of the cashier receipt to the department processing the application. Payment shall be by certified check payable to "County of San Diego" and submitted to the cashier at the Office of the County Clerk. County initiated projects are not required to pay by certified check and can use transfer of funds or other means as payment. When the payment of said Fish and Game fees and any County handling fees is made, and a copy of the cashier receipt is provided by the applicant to the department processing the application, the Environmental Impact Report or the Negative Declaration may proceed to hearing and/or decision.
If the payment of said Fish and Game fees and any County handling fees is not made, and a copy of the cashier receipt is not provided by the applicant to the department processing the application, the Environmental Impact Report or the Negative Declaration shall not proceed to hearing and/or decision and the County of San Diego may, at the discretion of the department processing the application, bring the project to the decision maker with a recommendation for denial if the County is unable to approve the project within the time periods set forth in the Permit Streamlining Act (Government Code Sec. 65920 et seq.).
(d) SANTA FE VALLEY SPECIFIC PLAN FEES
This subsection establishes a Specific Plan fee for each subarea within the Santa Fe Valley Specific Plan pursuant to Government Code Section 65456. The Specific Plan fee for each subarea, as set forth in the table below, shall be paid in full to the Department of Planning & Development Services prior to the approval of any final map or parcel map in the applicable subarea.
The Director of Planning & Development Services shall use any fees collected under this subsection to reimburse BalcorFe Valley Venture (or its successor or assigns) for its costs in funding the preparation, adoption, and administration of the Specific Plan beyond the relative benefit it derived from the Specific Plan adoption. Notwithstanding any other provision in this subsection, BalcorFe Valley Venture (or its successor or assigns) shall not be required to pay the Specific Plan fee specified in the table below for any of the subareas in Area II, as said property owner has already contributed funding which exceeds its relative benefit derived from the Specific Plan adoption.