Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan Update

Lake Tahoe Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan Update

The City of South Lake Tahoe Planning Commission, acting in its capacity as the South Lake Tahoe Airport Land Use Commission, adopted an updated Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan (ALUCP) on September 12, 2019. The ALUCP Final documents can be found at the following links:

Adopted ALUCP (September, 2019)

Appendix A - Airport Layout Plan

Appendix B - State Laws Related to Airport Land Use Planning

Appendix C - Title 14, Code of Federal Regulations, Part 77

Appendix D - General Plan Consistency Checklist

Appendix E - Noise Modeling Assumptions

Appendix F - Sample Implementation Documents

Appendix G - Methods for Determining Concentrations of People

Appendix H - Federal Regulations Pertaining to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

Airport Land Use Commission

The State of California requires every county with an airport "operated for the benefit of the general public' to form an Airport Land Use Commission (ALUC). The purpose of an ALUC is to conduct compatible land use planning for areas around airports. ALUCs "protect public health, safety, and welfare by ensuring the orderly expansion of airports and the adoption of land use measures that minimize the public's exposure to excessive noise and safety hazards within areas around public airports to the extent that these areas are not already devoted to incompatible uses." 

There are three important limits to an ALUC's authority:

1.  ALUCs have no authority over existing land uses regardless of whether such uses are incompatible with airport activities (Pub. Util. Code, § 21670 (a)(2) and § 21674(a));

2.  ALUCs have no jurisdiction over the "operation of airports" (Pub. Util. Code, § 21674(e)); and,

3.  ALUCs have no jurisdiction over federal lands, such as military bases and lands controlled by the U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Bureau of Land Management, or lands under the authority of American Indian tribes and bands (Pub. Util. Code, § 21675(b)).

The City of South Lake Tahoe has been given authority to establish an ALUC which consists of the five members of the City Planning Commission and two appointed members with aviation experience. 

Airport Land Use Compatibility Plan Update

ALUCPs are documents that ensure that future land uses in areas around an airport are compatible with its continued operation while safeguarding the welfare of people who live in the airport vicinity and the general public. More specifically, the ALUCP should act as a guide for the ALUC and local jurisdictions in safeguarding the general welfare of the public as the area surrounding the airport develops. The ALUCP also serves as a tool for the ALUC in fulfilling its duty to review airport and land use development proposals within the Airport Influence Area (AIA). The ALUCP provides the standards, criteria, and policies on which the compatibility of proposed local land use policy actions are determined. The ALUCP includes land use policies to protect the public from airport-related noise, to protect air traffic from hazards associated with development, and to limit the number of people that would be exposed to the risk of an aircraft accident.

California law requires that after an ALUC has adopted an ALUCP, affected local governments must update their general plans, specific plans, and regulations to be consistent with the ALUCP (Gov’t. Code, § 65302.3).

In June 2016, the City was awarded $108,000 in California Airport Aid Program Funding (CAAP) for the update of the Lake Tahoe Airport Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP). A Draft ALUCP for the Lake Tahoe Airport was made available for public review in June 2018 and presented to the Airport Land Use Commission. Comments on the document were received from the ALUC and public speakers at the June 21, 2018 ALUC meeting and written comments were received from the Caltrans Division of Aeronautics and El Dorado County. Revisions to the draft ALUCP were made throughout the document to address those comments. A response to the comments received and a revised ALUCP was presented to the ALUCP in April 2019 and made available for public review.

A Development Displacement Analysis for the draft ALUCP was also completed (see Attachment 3). The analysis compares vacant lot development potential of the underlying zoning (Plan Area Statements, Area Plans, and Community Plans) and current Lake Tahoe Comprehensive Land Use Plan (CLUP) with the development potential of the draft ALUCP.  The results of the analysis indicate that there could be potential displacement of land uses associated with the safety policies in the ALUCP on three parcels. These parcels are located between the Airport and Hwy 50 and also have additional development constraints such as terrain, stream environment zone and FAA approval requirements.  In other areas, the ALUCP is less restricting than the current CLUP regulations with respect to the potential development of housing. 

Click here to download the Development Displacement Analysis.

In May 2019 a draft Initial Study and Negative Declaration was made available for public comment and sent to state agencies for review in compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). The Draft IS/ND provided analysis of the potential for the project to result in significant environmental impacts.  Areas of analysis include aesthetics, agriculture and forestry, air quality, biological resources, cultural resources, geology and soils, greenhouse gas emissions, hazards and hazardous materials, hydrology and water quality, land use and planning, mineral resources, noise, population and housing, public services, recreation, transportation and traffic, utility and services systems, and additional mandatory findings of significance related to potential cumulative impacts.  The analysis demonstrated that the updated ALUCP would have less than significant impacts in all of these areas. Click here to download the adopted Initial Study and Negative Declaration.