1. What is LAFCO?
LAFCO is an acronym for Local Agency
Formation Commission. It is a regulatory agency with county-wide
jurisdiction, established by state law (the Cortese-Knox Act) to
coordinate logical and timely changes in local government boundaries,
and to insure that services are provided efficiently while agricultural
lands are protected.
2. What does LAFCO do?
LAFCO is responsible for: reviewing and
approving proposed jurisdictional boundary changes, including
annexations and detachments of territory to and/or from cities and
special districts; incorporations of new cities; formations of new
special districts; and consolidations, mergers, and dissolutions of
existing districts. In addition, LAFCO must: review and approve
Out-of-Agency service agreements; determine spheres of influence for
each city and district; and may initiate proposals involving district
consolidation, dissolution, establishment of subsidiary districts,
mergers, and reorganizations (combinations of these jurisdictional
3. Who are the members
The Commission consists of five regular
members as specified by State law. Two members are from the San Joaquin
County Board of Supervisors. There are two city members, who are
selected by the City Selection Committee to represent the seven cities
in the County. The fifth Commissioner is a public member who is selected
by the two County and two City members. There are three alternate
members, one each from the County, City and Public membership
Go to Current membership
4. How long will it take
to process my proposal?
Proposals which are considered routine
and non-controversial can be processed within 60-days after a complete
set of application materials have been submitted to the LAFCO office.
More complex proposals take additional time to process.
5. Is the public
notified about LAFCO actions?
State law requires that LAFCO notify
affected agencies and the public regarding jurisdictional boundary
change proposals. Notification of a pending proposal is made to affected County
departments, interested individuals, and local governmental agencies.
Landowners owning land within the proposed annexation site and
registered voters living within the proposed territory and within 300
feet of the annexation site are provided a Notice of Public Hearing. Proposals
are then considered by the Commission at a public hearing during a
regular LAFCO meeting.
6. Does LAFCO charge a
fee to process jurisdictional boundary change proposals?
State law authorizes LAFCO to charge the
estimated reasonable cost to process jurisdictional boundary change
proposals. Processing fees vary depending on the type of proposal (i.e.,
district formation, merger, reorganization, etc.). Annexation and
detachment fees are also based on acreage. Please contact the LAFCO
office at 209-468-3198 for fee calculation information.
7. What is a sphere of
A sphere of influence is a planning tool
adopted and used by LAFCO to designate the future boundary and service
area for a city or special district. Spheres can be amended and updated
from time to time.
8. Is LAFCO required to
comply with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA)?
Yes, LAFCO must comply with CEQA when
considering boundary change proposals.