Chapter 13-2. Organization, Applicability and Interpretation

Sec. 13-2.100 Organization.

1. Structure of Regulations. The zoning regulations are divided into 5 divisions:

Division I

General Provisions

Division II

Zone District Regulations

Division III

Property Development and Use Regulations

Division IV


Division V


2. Land Use and Property Development Regulations. Regulations of land use and property development are specified within each zoning district contained in Division II and within Division III. The process of reviewing zoning permits and administering the Zoning Ordinance is contained within Division IV. [Ord. 515 § 2, 2018; ZO § 2.100.]

Sec. 13-2.200 Applicability of Zoning Ordinance.

The Zoning Ordinance shall apply to all property, whether owned by private persons, firms, corporations or organizations, the United States of America or any of its agencies, the State of California or any of its agencies or political subdivisions, any city or county, including the City of Hercules or any of its agencies, or any authority or district organized under the laws of the State of California. [Ord. 515 § 2, 2018; ZO § 2.200.]

Sec. 13-2.300 Administration of Zoning Ordinance.

The Community Development Director or the City official acting in such capacity shall administer the Zoning Ordinance. The Planning Commission and City Council shall participate in the application review process as set forth in Division IV. [Ord. 515 § 2, 2018; ZO § 2.300.]

Sec. 13-2.400 Rules for Interpretation.

1. The provisions of the Zoning Ordinance shall be interpreted as setting forth standards and procedures for the promotion of the public health, safety, comfort, convenience, and general welfare of the City of Hercules. The Zoning Ordinance implements the General Plan. The General Plan shall have precedence in the event that any conflict between the 2 documents should arise. Where conflicts occur between the provisions of the Zoning Ordinance and the Building Code or other regulations of the City, the more restrictive shall apply. Where conflicts occur between the provisions of the Zoning Ordinance, the most recently adopted shall apply; if the provisions were adopted on the same date, the most restrictive shall apply. Where uncertainty exists regarding the interpretation of any provision of the Zoning Ordinance or its application to a particular site or situation, the Community Development Director shall determine the intent and application of the provision.

2. Whenever any uncertainty exists as to the boundaries of any district shown upon the official Zoning Map the following provisions shall apply:

A. Where boundaries are indicated as approximately following the centerline of streets, alleys, lot lines, or flood control channels, such lines shall be interpreted to be such boundaries.

B. In the case of unsubdivided property or where a zone boundary divides a lot, the location of such boundaries, unless indicated by dimensions or legal descriptions, shall be determined by use of the scale appearing on the Zoning Map.

C. Where further uncertainty exists, the Community Development Director shall determine the location of the boundary in question, giving due consideration to the location indicated on the Zoning Map and the objectives of the Zoning Ordinance and the purposes set forth in the district regulations.

3. In addition to the provisions of the Municipal Code, the following rules shall apply to interpreting the requirements of the Zoning Ordinance:

A. The following conjunctions shall be interpreted as follows unless the context of the language clearly indicates a contrary interpretation.

1) “And” indicates that all connected words, phrases or provisions shall apply.

2) “Or” indicates that the connected words, phrases or provisions apply singly or may apply in combination depending on the context.

3) “Either ... or” indicates that the connected words, phrases or provisions shall apply singly but not in combination.

B. When a conflict arises between the regulations of different zoning districts, overlays, development standards, performance standards or other provisions, the following shall apply; provided, that such interpretation is not contrary to the objectives and policies of the General Plan.

1) Any guidance for priority within the regulations in question such as “the most recently amended regulation shall prevail” shall receive first preference in resolving an apparent conflict.

2) The more restrictive requirement shall receive second preference.

3) District specific standards shall receive preference over Citywide standards as a third preference.

C. If there is a conflict between the text and a diagram or figure, the text shall prevail.

D. All references to days are calendar days unless otherwise indicated. If a time deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, the deadline shall be extended to the next working day of the City.

4. An interpretation of the zoning regulations or provisions and zoning district boundaries by the Community Development Director may be appealed to the Planning Commission and City Council as provided in Chapter 13-44. [Ord. 515 § 2, 2018; ZO § 2.400.]

Sec. 13-2.500 Severability.

If any Division, Chapter, Section, sentence, clause, phrase, figure or table of the Zoning Ordinance is declared invalid by a court of competent jurisdiction, the validity of the remaining portions of the Zoning Ordinance shall not be affected. [Ord. 515 § 2, 2018; ZO § 2.500.]