San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission
In response to Governor Gavin Newsom’s Executive Orders designed to promote public health and safety and guidance promulgated by the City and County of San Francisco’s Department of Public Health, BCDC staff will continue to work remotely until further notice, and the Commission will continue to hold public meetings virtually. It is not yet clear when either the Newsom Administration or local public health officials will determine that it is safe and appropriate for Commissioners and staff to be physically present at BCDC’s office in the Bay Area Metro Center in San Francisco.
Operational changes at BCDC continue in at least four respects
Commission meetings: BCDC is adhering to its meeting schedules for the Commission, Enforcement Committee, Design Review Board, Engineering Criteria Review Board, and Commission working groups. Those public meetings are being held virtually based upon Governor Newsom’s Executive Order (PDF) that alters the state’s Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act requirements. BCDC will continue to post meeting agendas in a timely fashion, ensure that its public meetings are accessible to the public, and offer members of the public the opportunity to observe and participate in the meetings. See information on public participation.
Staff working policies: BCDC's office is located in San Francisco. However, state and local health officials’ guidance explicitly recommends enhanced telework schedules and physical distancing. Therefore, except for essential tasks, BCDC staff will continue to work remotely. Obviously, this limits the ability of BCDC staff members to meet in person with the public, permittees, applicants, planners, and vendors. However, the staff has demonstrated considerable resilience, has quickly adapted to working remotely and virtually, and continues to be available every day to conduct business with all of our stakeholders. Staff members are available through email, phone, and video conferencing.
Closure of Shoreline Public Access Areas due to COVID-19: On a case-by-case basis, BCDC is authorizing temporary closures of required shoreline public access areas due to COVID-19 when the proposed closures are consistent with local public health orders and meet the criteria below. Property owners proposing to close public access areas must seek approval from BCDC prior to closing such areas. Contact email@example.com to submit a request. BCDC approval or disapproval will be based on the following criteria: The purpose, need, and duration of the closure or restriction must be tied to a COVID-19 public health order from the local public health department or public safety department. As orders are lightened or lifted, public access areas will reopen in a commensurate manner.
Closures or restrictions may apply only to public access areas that are affected by the COVID-19 public health orders. Public access areas not subject to the public health order must remain open.
The purpose and need for closures or restrictions to public access areas must be documented prior to the closure and updated as the situation changes.
Upon reopening, the public access area shall be restored to its previous condition or better.
Resilience: Adapting successfully to the challenges that BCDC and its stakeholders face due to COVID-19 will require more changes than those listed above. Even in the face of this public health crisis, BCDC will look for opportunities to improve its operations and expand its outreach and transparency. Commissioners and staff welcome suggestions that can ensure continued, if not expanded, operations and public involvement.
For general inquiries related to BCDC matters such as permitting, public access, planning, policy issues, or press matters, please contact us – your call will be returned by an appropriate staff member.
Updated April 19, 2021
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