The East Contra Costa County Habitat Conservancy was created to oversee assembly and operation of the HCP/NCCP Preserve System and ensure compliance with all terms of the HCP/NCCP, permits, and Implementing Agreement. The Conservancy is run by a Governing Board of representatives from the cities and the County. The Conservancy will be advised by representatives of the wildlife agencies, local land management agencies, a pool of Science Advisors, and a public advisory committee.
The Conservancy will be responsible for overseeing and ensuring the day-to-day tasks of implementing the HCP/NCCP “on the ground,” although some of the activities may be delegated to and carried out by contractors or partners such as land management agencies. The Conservancy's duties will consist of routine Plan activities such as identifying suitable conservation properties, undertaking survey and monitoring efforts on HCP/NCCP preserves, contacting neighboring landowners to explain coverage under the permit, maintaining a database of relevant preserve information, and tracking habitat losses and acquisition.
It will primarily be the Cities and the County's responsibility to receive and review applications for take coverage under the HCP/NCCP in their jurisdiction. The primary duties of the Habitat Conservancy related to HCP/NCCP applications is to provide training and technical support to local planning staff. A summary of roles and responsibilities related to the application review process is included on this table. An overview of the Habitat Conservancy's proposed activities for 2008 is provided in this draft work plan.
Public Advisory Committee
The Conservancy will establish and appoint a public advisory committee to solicit input from stakeholders with interest in Plan implementation. The committee will report directly to the Conservancy Governing Board. Committee members will be drawn from a variety of interest groups, including conservation advocacy organizations, landowner groups, and development interests.
The public advisory committee will provide input to the Conservancy Governing Board and staff on all aspects of Plan implementation, with an emphasis on the following topics:
- Expenditure of funds for habitat conservation measures.
- The general permit issuance process (but not project-by-project input on permits).
- Operation of preserves and adaptive management.
- Adherence to plan commitments (e.g., no surprises, neighboring landowner protections).