Permit and Resource Management Department Banner

Countywide Requirements

There are a number of specific County requirements for mining and reclamation activities which are applicable to all quarry, instream, and terrace operations.

The following summarizes the more important Countywide standards for mining and reclamation which will be added to Chapter 26A of the County Code. These standards shall apply to all aggregate operations and related activities conducted in unincorporated portions of the County pursuant to approved mining permits and reclamation plans.

Operating Standards

  1. The hours of operation for all aggregate operations shall be limited to 6:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m. Monday through Friday and 6:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Saturdays, except as specified below for instream operations. Mining at other times or on federal holidays will be prohibited unless specially set forth as a use permit condition. Conditions of approval may further limit the hours of operation to reduce noise levels or mitigate other site specific project impacts.
  2. All operations shall be conducted to reduce noise to acceptable levels at nearby sensors. The maximum acceptable noise levels for all aggregate operations are the standards contained in the Noise Element of the General Plan or any regulations adopted to support and enforce those standards. More stringent noise controls may be required as a permit condition when local circumstances warrant additional protection of adjacent uses.
  3. All operations shall ensure the security of the site, protect the public, and prevent trespassing through the use of fencing, gates, warning signs, site patrols, and similar methods.
  4. All operations shall minimize alterations to natural drainage systems. Stormwater shall not be accumulated on site unless necessary to control flooding, erosion, or siltation of adjacent and downstream watercourses. All operations shall incorporate the "best management practices" into the Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plan required by the RWQCB. Operations along stream channels shall obtain the appropriate permits and comply with the requirements of Ordinance 3836R, the RWQCB, CDF&G, SLC, and the Corps.
  5. All operators shall be required to develop a truck driver education program which includes posting details on preferred haul routes and informing drivers of procedures established to reduce public conflicts. Operators will also be required to monitor driver compliance and respond to complaints about gravel trucks.
  6. All access roads and entrances to aggregate operations from public roads shall be paved or otherwise surfaced to prevent aggregate or other materials from being deposited onto the public right-of-way. All public and private haul routes shall be maintained as necessary to prevent dust.

    New entrances to public roads are required to have encroachment permits from the County or Caltrans. All roads to be used for site access should have sufficient width, shoulders, pavement strength, and other features necessary to adequately mitigate the traffic impacts of proposed operations. Public access roads shall meet the design requirements of the General Plan and related standards. Traffic levels on public access roads shall not exceed the acceptable levels identified in the General Plan.
  7. All operations shall provide off-street parking sufficient to accommodate customers, employees, and all mining equipment.
  8. All operations shall manage hazardous materials and hazardous wastes in compliance with the requirements of the Uniform Fire Code, the Uniform Building Code, the County Public Health Department, local fire protection agencies, the NSCAPCD and the BAAQMD, the RWQCB, and the California EPA. Hazardous materials and wastes are to be removed from

    all mining areas within the 100-year flood plain by November 1 of each year. Each mining site where hazardous materials are used or hazardous wastes are stored is required to have a Spill Prevention and Countermeasure Plan as part of the use permit.
  9. All operations and equipment used in the extraction, processing, or transportation of aggregate materials shall comply with the air quality regulations of the NSCAPCD or the BAAQMD.
  10. All operations shall have procedures for identifying and protecting items of archaeological, paleontological, and historical value. These procedures shall also require notifying the appropriate parties if any items of value are identified and implementing the retrieval and review measures established by those parties. The requirements for these procedures are specified in Chapter 8, Section 15, "Cultural Resources."
  11. All aggregate operations are required to contribute to the Aggregate Road Mitigation Program to pay for the industry's fair share of mitigating cumulative traffic impacts on the County road network. Annual mitigation fees based on production will be established to pay for maintenance to County roads used as haul routes. The amount of the mitigation fee and the road improvements to be performed shall be reviewed and approved annually by the Board of Supervisors. The administration of this mitigation program is discussed in section 7.7.
  12. Each use permit will also contain the specific additional steps the operator will carry out to mitigate local traffic and road impacts which are not addressed by the Countywide Aggregate Road Mitigation Program. Upgrading of haul routes may be required as a permit condition in order to carry truck weights and prevent traffic hazards. Upgrading may be timed to correspond to mining phases or production and may be financed with revenue bonds.
  13. Where vested rights determinations for existing aggregate operations have been made, no new use permit shall be required unless a "substantial change" in operations occurs. A substantial change is defined as an increase of 25 percent or more in the amount of aggregate production or importation in a calendar year compared to the average for the previous five calendar years or any change in operations which creates new, significant environmental impacts.
  14. All operations are subject to the requirements of Chapter 26A of the County Code, including reimbursement of the County's costs for carrying out the monitoring and mitigation activities set forth in this Plan.
  15. Operators shall obtain any and all permits and approvals required by other agencies having jurisdiction over the mining operations and shall provide copies to the County.
  16. Nighttime lighting shall be located and designed to minimize off-site glare.

Reclamation Standards

All aggregate operations shall have approved reclamation plans with the following contents required by SMARA:

  1. Names and addresses of the operator and persons designated as an agent.
    1. Anticipated quantity and type of materials to be mined.
    2. Proposed initiation and termination dates for the project and each phase.
    3. Maximum anticipated depths and elevations of mining.
    4. Description of mining plan and a schedule of when reclamation will be initiated.
    5. Maximum rates of production.
    6. Proposed processing operations, importing of materials, and haul routes for importing and distribution.
    7. Legal description of the lands that will be affected by the operation.
    8. Description of the proposed or potential uses of the site after reclamation.
    9. Description of the manner of reclamation, including how contaminants will be controlled, mining wastes will be disposed of, and affected streambed channels and streambanks will be rehabilitated to reduce erosion and sedimentation.
    10. An assessment of the reclamation plan's effect on future mining in the area.
    11. Statement that the applicant accepts responsibility for reclaiming the mined lands.
    12. Other information required by the County about how the site will be reclaimed to a condition suitable for other beneficial uses.
  2. Reclamation shall begin as soon as possible during the mining process and in all cases shall be completed within the schedule stated in the approved reclamation plan.
  3. Reclamation shall reduce to levels of risk acceptable to the County all hazards to public health and safety, including unstable slopes, dangerous equipment, toxic substances, water pollution, disease vectors, and access to adjacent properties.
  4. Final grading and drainage shall be designed to prevent future discharge of sediment above pre-mining levels.
  5. All mined lands will be revegetated. Revegetation methods shall be appropriate to the topographic, soil, and climate conditions of the site and shall incorporate shrubs and trees native to the area. The natural regrowth of riparian vegetation shall be encouraged on disturbed areas adjacent to streams and water bodies. The standards contained in the 1992 Revegetation Technical Report available at the Planning Department will be applied where applicable. All revegetation will be inspected at least once a year by the County and the need for additional planting will be determined at that time.
  6. Mined slopes shall have soil added where needed to support the type of revegetation proposed. Topsoil, overburden, aggregate processing sediment, and other native earth materials from the site and surrounding area shall be used to the maximum extent feasible in this process.
  7. All mining operators and owners responsible for the reclamation of mined lands shall submit effective financial assurances to the County to ensure the completion of approved reclamation activities including all required revegetation. The content and form of the assurances shall meet SMARA and State requirements. The amount of the assurances shall be sufficient to cover all costs associated with reclamation and may be adjusted annually to reflect phasing or progress of mining and reclamation activities. Financial assurances shall not be released until the County determines in writing that the required reclamation has been completed.
  8. All reclamation plans and activities shall comply with reclamation standards adopted by the SMGB.
  9. All surface mining operations are subject to the reclamation standards and other requirements of Chapter 26A of the County Code.

Contact Information

Contact Planning by Phone
Monday – Friday
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
1:00 PM – 3:00 PM
2550 Ventura Avenue
Santa Rosa, CA 95403
38.465074, -122.723705