Three Rivers Community Plan shifts into high gear


If you’re interested in the future of Three Rivers then the Tulare County Resource Management Agency and, specifically, the planning department is putting you and the state clearinghouse on notice. That was the agenda that Hector Guerra, chief environmental planner for Tulare County, presented at the Monday, May 9, public meeting.

Rather than discuss key topics that are being considered for inclusion in the plan, after nearly two years of monthly community plan meetings, the ongoing meetings has now shifted from talking to doing. Guerra said he will begin to assemble the plan then plug in the data and action statements as they became available.

This current phase, officially called “Notice of Preparation,” started the clock ticking on May 5 with the notification forwarded to the state clearinghouse in Sacramento and to more than 40 federal, state, and local reviewing agencies. Interested parties have 30 days to comment during this scoping portion of the update.

“The provisions in CEQA law give highest priority to written comments so please submit a hard copy,” Guerra said. “This initial phase defines the scope and content of the environmental information to be included in the plan.”

Guerra said that due to the timetable mandated by state law, it is imperative all interested parties start on the same page. To do that, it’s important to review the project description, location, and potential environmental effects as enumerated to date.

Technical studies, Guerra said, will be prepared for the following environmental elements: air quality, biology, cultural resources, greenhouse gas, hydrology/water quality and supply, noise, and transportation/traffic. If others might warrant a technical appendix, now is the time to submit written comments.

The Three Rivers Community Plan, after more than a decade of meetings, is now taking shape as at least four rather large documents. Volume 1 will contain discussions of at least four broad subject areas: (1) Land Use and Environmental Planning, (2) Economic Development, (3) Vision Statements, and (4) Strengthening the Relationship with TCAG.

Volume 2 will contain the Environmental Impact Report, including a detailed analysis of potential impacts and appropriate mitigation. It will contain findings and outline the study’s methodology.

Volume 3 will consist of the appendices containing the technical studies. 

The length of Volume 4 is problematic because it will contain a discussion of comments received and the appropriate responses by staff.

All supplementary materials for the Three Rivers Community Plan have been archived on the County’s website. Comments specific to the Notice of Preparation are due by Sunday, June 5. 

Direct any comments or questions to Hector Guerra, Chief Environmental Planner, via email at or call (559) 624-7121.

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