Chapter 13.12
AIRPORT APPROACH ZONES

Sections:

13.12.010    Declaration of purpose.

13.12.020    Definitions.

13.12.030    Zones.

13.12.040    Height limit.

13.12.050    Use restrictions.

13.12.060    Nonconforming uses.

13.12.070    Administrative agency.

13.12.080    Permits.

13.12.090    Variances.

13.12.100    Review of administrative decision.

13.12.110    Violations.

13.12.120    Conflicting regulations.

13.12.010 Declaration of purpose.

Pursuant to the authority conferred by the Airport Approaches Zoning Law of the State of California and in conformity with Sections 50485 to 50485.14 and any successor provisions of the Government Code, the Board of Supervisors of the County of Santa Cruz, State of California, deems it necessary to regulate the use of airspace for the purpose of promoting the health, safety and general welfare of the inhabitants of the County of Santa Cruz by preventing the creation or establishment of airport hazards, thereby protecting the lives and property of the users of the Watsonville Municipal Airport and of the occupants of the land in its vicinity and preventing destruction and impairment of the utility of the airport and the public investment therein. [Ord. 4496-C § 67, 1998; Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.020 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context otherwise requires:

“Airport” means the Watsonville Municipal Airport.

“Airport hazard” means any structure or tree or use of land which obstructs the airspace required for the flight of aircraft in landing or taking off at the airport or is otherwise hazardous to such landing or taking off of aircraft.

“Landing area” means the area of the airport used for the landing, take-off or taxiing of aircraft.

“Person” means any individual, firm, copartnership, corporation, company, association, joint stock association, city or county, or district, and includes any trustee, receiver, or assignee.

“Structure” means any object constructed or installed by man, including, but without limitation, buildings, towers, smokestacks and overhead lines.

“Tree” means any object of natural growth. [Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.030 Zones.

In order to carry out the purposes of this chapter, all of the lands within the boundaries of the Watsonville Municipal Airport and within certain areas adjacent thereto of the landing area of the airport, are hereby divided into inner turning zones, outer turning zones, transition zones, instrument approach zones, and noninstrument approach zones, boundaries of which are shown on the Watsonville Municipal Airport Zoning Map, dated December 11, 1963, which by this reference is incorporated herein and made a part of this chapter.

Watsonville Municipal Airport zoning map dated December 11, 1963, is hereby approved as the official map for zoning purposes and shall be on file in the Office of the County Clerk and is hereby made a part of this chapter, subject to amendments thereof made pursuant to law from time to time. Such amendments shall be entered on the official map and the same shall be maintained up to date at all times. [Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.040 Height limit.

Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, no structure shall be erected, altered or maintained in any airport approach zone, transition zone or turning zone to a height in excess of the height limit herein established for each zone. For purposes of determining these height limits as hereinafter specified, the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey has established the official elevation reference of the Watsonville Municipal Airport to be 160 feet above mean sea level and all height limits will begin at said elevation. For the purposes of this regulation, the following height limits are hereby established for each of the zones in question:

(A)    Inner Turning Zone: 150 feet.

(B)    Outer Turning Zone: 150 feet at the inner perimeter and increasing in height at the ratio of one foot vertically to 20 feet horizontally to the outer perimeter.

(C)    Transition Zone. The height to be determined within the boundaries of the transition zone by reference to Watsonville Municipal Airport Zoning Map at a ratio of 7:1 commencing at the boundary of the landing area.

(D)    Noninstrument Approach Zones. The height to be determined within the boundaries of the noninstrument approach zones by reference to the Watsonville Municipal Airport Zoning Map and shall not exceed a height greater than permitted by a 20:1 glideslope and in no event to exceed a height greater than 150, starting 200 feet from the end of the runway in an outbound direction.

(E)    Instrument Approach Zone. The height to be determined within the boundaries of the instrument approach zone by reference to the Watsonville Municipal Airport Zoning Map and shall not exceed a height greater than permitted by a 50:1 glideslope starting 200 feet from the end of the runway and extending 10,000 feet in an outbound direction and in no event shall the height of any structure or object of natural growth exceed 150 feet. [Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.050 Use restrictions.

No use may be made of land within any airport approach zone, airport turning zone or airport transition zone, in such a manner as to create electrical interference with radio communication between the airport and aircraft nor the use of lights within said zone, making it difficult for pilots to distinguish between airport lights and other lights, resulting in glare in the eyes of the pilots using the airport, impairing visibility in the vicinity of the airport, or otherwise endangering the landing, takeoff or maneuvering of aircraft.

It shall be unlawful for any person whether as owner, principal, agent, or employee or otherwise to perform an action or allow a situation to continue that violates the provisions of this chapter or violates any permit conditions required pursuant to this chapter. All violations shall be enforced in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 18.10 SCCC except where specified elsewhere in this chapter. [Ord. 3433 § 1, 1983; Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.060 Nonconforming uses.

The regulations prescribed in SCCC 13.12.040 and 13.12.050 shall not be construed to require the removal, lowering or other change or alteration of any structure or tree not conforming to the regulations as of the effective date hereof, or otherwise interfere with the continuance of any nonconforming use except as herein provided. Nothing herein contained shall require any change in the construction, alteration, or intended use of any structure, the construction or alteration of which was begun prior to the effective date of the ordinance codified in this chapter, and is diligently pursued and completed within a reasonable time thereof. [Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.070 Administrative agency.

The Zoning Administrator is hereby designated as the administrative agency charged with the duty of administering and enforcing the regulations herein described. The duties of the Zoning Administrator shall include that of hearing and deciding all applications for permits and variances under the provisions of this chapter. Notices of all actions taken pursuant to this chapter shall be in accordance with the requirements of Chapter 18.10 SCCC, Level V. [Ord. 3433 § 1, 1983; Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.080 Permits.

Before any nonconforming structure or trees may be replaced, substantially altered or repaired, rebuilt, allowed to grow higher, or replanted, a permit must be secured from the Zoning Administrator. Applications for approvals granted pursuant to this chapter shall be made in accordance with the requirements of Chapter 18.10 SCCC, Level V. No permit shall be granted that would allow the establishment or creation of an airport hazard or permit a nonconforming structure or tree or nonconforming use to be made or become higher or become a greater hazard to air navigation than it was on February 3, 1964, or than it is when the application for a permit is made. Except as provided herein, all applications for permits shall be granted. No such permit shall be required to make maintenance repairs to or to replace parts of existing structures which do not enlarge or increase the height of the existing structure. [Ord. 3433 § 1, 1983; Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.090 Variances.

(A)    Any person desiring to erect any structure, or increase the height of any structure or permit the growth of any tree, or otherwise use his property in a manner contrary to the airport zoning regulations adopted under this chapter, may apply to the Zoning Administrator for a variance from the zoning regulations in question. Applications for approvals granted pursuant to this chapter shall be made in accordance with the requirements of Chapter 18.10 SCCC, Level V. Such variances shall be allowed where a literal application or enforcement of the regulations would result in practical difficulty or unnecessary hardship and the relief granted would not be contrary to the public interest, but would do substantial justice and be in accordance with the spirit of the regulations and this chapter; provided, that any variance may be allowed subject to any reasonable conditions that the Zoning Administrator may deem necessary to effectuate the purposes of this chapter.

(B)    In granting any permit or variance under this chapter, the Zoning Administrator may, if he deems such action advisable to effectuate the purposes of this chapter and it is reasonable in the circumstances, condition such permit or variance so as to require the owner of the structure or tree in question to permit the County, at its own expense, to install, operate and maintain thereon such markers and lights as may be necessary to indicate to flyers the presence of an airport hazard. [Ord. 3433 § 1, 1983; Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.100 Review of administrative decision.

Any person aggrieved, or taxpayer affected, by any decision of the Zoning Administrator under this chapter may petition the Board of Supervisors for a review of the matter in accordance with SCCC 18.10.310 et seq. For this purpose the procedure therein set forth is incorporated herein and made a part of this chapter. [Ord. 3433 § 1, 1983; Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.110 Violations.

(A)    Any person violating or causing or permitting the violation of any of the provisions of this chapter shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall be punished by a fine of not more than $500.00 or by imprisonment in the County jail for a term not exceeding six months or by both such fine and imprisonment. Such person shall be deemed guilty of a separate offense for each and every day during any portion of which any violation of this chapter is commenced, continued or permitted by such person and shall be punishable as herein provided.

(B)    In addition, for any violation of any of the provisions of this chapter, the County may institute in any court of competent jurisdiction an action to prevent, restrain, correct or abate any violation hereof or airport zoning regulations adopted hereunder, or of any order or ruling made, in connection with their administration or enforcement.

The remedies provided for herein shall be cumulative and not exclusive. [Ord. 938, 1964].

13.12.120 Conflicting regulations.

Where this chapter imposes a greater or more stringent restriction upon the use of land than is imposed or required by any other chapter or regulation, the provisions of this chapter shall govern. [Ord. 938, 1964].