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The San Bruno Senior Center is open Monday through Friday, 8 am to 4 pm.
San Bruno Senior Center1555 Crystal Springs RoadSan Bruno, CA 94066Phone: 650-616-7150
View the San Bruno Senior Center Map.
No. The San Bruno Senior Center Membership program is a voluntary program. It costs $15 for San Bruno residents and $20 for non-residents. The membership program has a benefit package that includes:
A monthly newsletter is released which includes class schedules, upcoming trips and programs, monthly menu, and contact information for Senior Center Staff. For $10 a year, you can have the monthly newsletter mailed to you or click below to be directed back to our Senior Center homepage for the Monthly Activities Calendar.
To enjoy a delicious and nutritious lunch, you must fill out an intake form. The suggested donation for people over 60 is $3. Any guest under 60 must pay a $5.50 lunch fee. You have the option of choosing from the daily scheduled meal or our well-stocked salad bar. The choice is yours! The daily menu is available as part of the monthly newsletter mailing or at the reception desk.
Contact Mary Tessier, Recreation Supervisor, by calling 650-616-7152 or by email.
The San Bruno Senior Center bus is for San Bruno residents only. To participate, you must fill out an intake form. Your name and address will be placed on a pick-up list. To arrange a ride, you must call 650-616-7150 the day before you would like a ride. The suggested donation for each ride is $1.
Thank you for your interest! There is a wide variety of volunteer opportunities. Volunteer applications are available online and at the reception desk. Once you apply, you will set up an appointment with the Volunteer Coordinator to determine your interests and see if your schedule is a good fit!
View the following list of available volunteer opportunities and application.
How do I rent the San Bruno Senior Center?
Call to make an appointment with the Coordinator at 650-616-7155.
Once you submit your deposit and fill out a Facility Use Agreement, you will receive a rental letter via email outlining the details and fees for your event. Due dates correspond with the date of your event and are listed below.
Fees are as follows:
Facility Attendant During Cleaning
Call the Information and Referrals Coordinator at 650-616-7155 or contact them by email.
Contact Mary, Recreation Supervisor, by calling 650-616-7152 or by email.
ADUs are allowed on any single-family residential, multi-family-residential and mixed-use zoned property where an existing single-family dwelling or multi-family dwelling has been established or a new single-family dwelling or multi-family dwelling is being proposed.
The zoning districts which allow ADUs are R-1, R-2, R-3, R-4, P-D where residential use is allowed and Specific Plan areas where residential use is allowed.
An Accessory Dwelling Unit is different from an Accessory Building. An Accessory Building, or structure, includes sheds, tool sheds, workshops, and garden sheds. SBMC 12.84.140.
A Junior ADU (JADU) is permitted under Government Code Section 65852.22. A JADU is a type of an ADU which is converted from an existing living area and located entirely within the existing residence. The maximum size of a JADU shall not exceed 500 s.f. A JADU shall have an efficiency kitchen while the bathroom can be independent or can be shared with the primary dwelling. A JADU is allowed in addition to a detached, new construction ADU in all zoning districts allowed for ADUs. A JADU requires owner occupancy of the primary dwelling.
Each single-family residential property is allowed one new construction ADU in addition to a JADU. Each multi-family residential property is allowed up to two detached ADU units plus multiple converted ADUs, up to 25% of existing units that are created within any existing non-livable spaces (storage, equipment rooms, basement or passageways).
ADU statute limits the size of an attached ADU to 50% of the size of the existing primary dwelling (Gov. Code Section 65852.2(a)(1)(D)(iv)). The local agency is generally required to allow an ADU of at least 850 sq. ft, or 1000 sq. ft. if it contains more than one bedroom. In a situation where the local agency’s development standards, as noted in an adopted ADU ordinance, constrain the area for an ADU, it could be limited to no less than 800 sq.ft. (Gov. Code Section 65852.2(c)(2)(B) & (C)).
There are no setback requirements for any converted ADUs. For newly created ADUs, they must comply with the front setback requirement of the underlying zoning district and four feet minimum side and rear setbacks.
One additional parking space is required for each ADU unless it is within a half-mile walking distance from public transit, located within the architecturally and historically significant historic district, part of proposed or existing primary residence or an accessory structure, when on-street parking permits are required but not offered to the occupant of an ADU and when car share vehicles is located with one block of the ADU. Tandem parking is allowed. There is no replacement parking requirement for any ADU that is converted from an existing parking structure (garage or carport).
Until January 1, 2025, there is no owner occupancy deed restriction requirement imposed on any ADU. However, owner occupancy of the primary dwelling is required for any new JADU.
Development Impact Fees are not required for any new ADUs up to 750 square feet in size. For ADUs that are more than 750 square feet in size, impact fees shall be calculated proportionally to the floor area of the main house. Connection and capacity fees should also be charged for detached ADUs only and should be calculated in proportion to the size of the unit or the total number of fixtures. ADU can only be considered a new residential use for the new utility service fee if it is constructed in conjunction with a new primary dwelling unit.
Until January 1, 2030, any code enforcement related correction pertaining to the creation of an ADU can be delayed up to five years, based on the owner’s request, for any ADU that was built before January 1, 2020.
Almost every construction project requires a permit. A Building permit is required for:
If you're not sure whether you need a permit, contact the Building Division at 650-616-7074. Building is only one of the departments and/or agencies that may be involved in the approval process. Depending on the scope of your project, you may need approvals from other departments and agencies.
To apply for a tenant improvement permit application, please visit our Community Development Department Customer Service Counter located at 567 El Camino Real.
After a Community Development Department Technician verifies that the application package is complete, and you pay the Plan Check Fees, a set of plans/documents will be forwarded to relevant departments for review; Building Safety, Planning, Public Services, and Fire. Approval from all departments/divisions is required prior to permit issuance.
The plan check process is then tracked in our Automated Tracking System and the project is assigned a standard turn-around time. The standard turn-around time for an initial review is 10 calendar days. The standard turn-around time for follow-up reviews (rechecks) is 5 calendar days.
A business license is an annual tax for doing business within the incorporated area of the City of San Bruno. The San Bruno Municipal Code requires that you obtain a registration when you conduct any business activity within the City - even if your business is located outside the city limits or you have a business registration from another city.
Building Division verifies conformance with applicable Disabled Access requirements related to existing buildings and tenant improvements in existing buildings. Per State law (California Building Standards Code - Title 24), existing buildings and facilities must comply when alterations, additions or repairs are to be made. Verification of compliance includes:
Small projects (2015 construction valuation up to $147,863) may qualify for an unreasonable hardship exception. See Application for Unreasonable Hardship Exception, Form. Granting an unreasonable hardship exception does not exempt all non-complying features. You still need to spend an amount equal to 20% of the project cost, and only that amount, on making some or all of the non-complying features comply. Existing non-complying features that will cost more than 20% of the project cost to make them comply, or will push the cumulative cost above the 20% limit, may qualify for an exemption. Your plans must show those accessibility features that will be brought to compliance and those existing non-complying features that may qualify for an exemption. For additional information or clarification contact our Chief Building Official at 650-616-7020.
Yes. Permanent and temporary signs require review and approval prior to the issuance of permits and installations. Check with the Planning Division before using or installing ANY type of sign, flag or banner, even balloons.
No. Your business location must be inspected by the necessary city departments before your license is issued and it is open to the general public. In certain circumstances, a prospective business location may not pass the initial inspection which could delay the issuance of your business license.
When a new business moves into an existing commercial or industrial tenant space, tenant improvements are the proposed interior alterations or additions (both structural and nonstructural). This applies to new buildings after the completion of the shell construction or when an existing business changes or modifies its use and/or expands within an existing building.
A complete tenant improvement permit application package consist of the following:
After you obtain all the required approvals and pay the Permit Fee, the Community Development Department will issue you a building permit. Now you can start construction. At certain stages of construction, your contractor must request a building inspection. See below for the typical sequence of required inspections for a Tenant Improvement:
To schedule an inspection by a building inspector, please call the building inspection voicemail system at 650-616-7076. Please do not contact the building inspector directly.
New businesses often require site inspections by multiple city departments. You will need to contact the different departments directly to schedule the appropriate inspections.
Cable boxes offer enhanced features to allow for the option of Parental Controls, Access to On Demand, PPV, Favorite Channels, Sports, Movies or Kids Channels and more. Explore your options using the remote control and by pressing menu.
View the diagram and instructions (PDF) for the Set-Top Box Connection.
To add a code to block out titles, programming or channels:
To use numeric keypad on remote to change channels (without pressing enter):
San Bruno Cable is an all-digital cable system, with the ability to address devices to determine what services you’ve ordered.
Yes, you’ll either need one of our boxes, a TV with a cable card slot or a TIVO recorder with a cable card slot. At this time there are very few TVs with Cable Card slots, and TIVO has other limitations, so the most feasible option is to use a converter from San Bruno cable.
Digital converters rely on data streaming to the device. When there is an interruption of signal, or low signal levels, the picture may “freeze” or “tile” momentarily. If the signal is too low or is interrupted, the converter box will display “One Moment Please” while it waits for an adequate level of signal to return.
This may happen once in a while with a digital converter, but if this happens frequently, a weekday service call should be scheduled to address this issue.
Check the mute and volume control on both the TV and Digital box using the remote. If one or the other device is muted, you will have no sound.
San Bruno Cable offers television programming as packages. To view a channel, it must be within a package you pay for.
To add packages to your service, simply call during business hours and request the package you want. There are no contracts to sign, nor any upgrade/downgrade fees to pay. Keep the package for a month and cancel anytime thereafter.
If you believe you should be receiving a specific channel but see the "not authorized" message, call us and ask the Customer Service Representative to refresh your account.
The Community Development Department is located at 567 El Camino Real inside of City Hall. We are open from 8 am to 5 pm. Monday through Friday including during lunch hours. During these hours we can answer questions, accept applications and plans checks for review, and accept re-submittals and revisions
After a Community Development Department Technician verifies that the application package is complete, and you pay the Plan Check Fees, a set of plans/documents will be forwarded to relevant departments for review; Building Safety, Planning, Public Services and Fire. Approval from all departments/divisions is required prior to permit issuance.The plan check process is then tracked in our Automated Tracking System and the project is assigned a standard turn-around-time. The standard turn-around-time for an initial review is 10 calendar days. The standard turn-around-time for follow-up reviews (rechecks) is 5 calendar days.
A business license is an annual tax for doing business within the incorporated area of the City of San Bruno. The San Bruno Municipal Code requires that you obtain a registration when you conduct any business activity within the City - even if your business is located outside the city limits or you have a business registration from another city.
Small projects (2015 construction valuation up to $147,863) may qualify for an unreasonable hardship exception. Granting an unreasonable hardship exception does not exempt all non-complying features. You still need to spend an amount equal to 20% of the project cost, and only that amount, on making some or all of the non-complying features comply. Existing non-complying features that will cost more than 20% of the project cost to make them comply, or will push the cumulative cost above the 20% limit, may qualify for an exemption. Your plans must show those accessibility features that will be brought to compliance and those existing non-complying features that may qualify for an exemption. For additional information or clarification contact our Chief Building Official at 650-616-7020.
Yes. Permanent and temporary signs require review and approval prior to issuance of permits and installations. Check with the Planning Division before using or installing any type of sign, flag or banner, even balloons.
When a new business moves into an existing commercial or industrial tenant space, tenant improvements are the proposed interior alterations or additions (both structural and nonstructural). This applies to new buildings after completion of the shell construction or when an existing business changes or modifies its use and/or expands within an existing building.
Apply at County Health Department for their plan review.
Where oil separator/grease interceptors are required, obtain approval from the City's Public Services Department for type/size proposed.
To schedule an inspection by a building inspector, please call the building inspection voicemail system at 650-616-7076. Please do not contact the building inspector directly.New businesses often require site inspections by multiple city departments. You will need to contact the different departments directly to schedule the appropriate inspections.
The Municipal Code defines public nuisances as "conditions and uses that are detrimental to the public health, safety and welfare, that promote blight, or which reduce property values in the city." The Code includes regulations to promote the maintenance of property and enhance the appearance, habitability or occupancy, and safety of all structures in the City.
To report graffiti for removal on private property, you can either call the Graffiti Hotline at 650-616-7141 or fill out our online Graffiti Report Form
To report graffiti in the public right-of-way or on public facilities, please contact Public Services at 650-616-7160.
To report graffiti on a State Highway, such as El Camino Real, Skyline Boulevard, or any freeway, please complete the California State Department of Transportation maintenance request form.
The California Building Code sets forth the minimum health and safety requirements for the structural strength, means of egress, stability, access to persons with disabilities, sanitation, lighting and ventilation, and energy conservation of residential dwellings. The Housing Code applies to all aspects of construction, alteration, enlargement, replacement, repair, use and occupancy, maintenance, and demolition. Typical housing code violations include:
Code Enforcement addresses issues related to:
You may request Code Enforcement service if you suspect a code violation on private property. To file a complaint:
Fill out an Code Enforcement Complaint Form on the City's website call 650-616-7040.
Let's Talk Housing is a collaborative effort of all the jurisdictions in San Mateo County focused on getting community feedback that will shape our Housing Elements - a housing plan that is part of every General Plan. Through an ongoing initiative called 21 Elements, we are working together to learn from and listen to the community about their housing needs, helping to make sure everyone is involved in shaping our shared future.
Local housing is enshrined in state law as a matter of "vital statewide importance" and, since 1969, the State of California has required that all local governments (cities, towns and counties, also known as local jurisdictions) adequately plan to meet the housing needs of everyone in our communities.
To meet this requirement, each city or county must develop a Housing Element as part of its General Plan (the local government's long-range blueprint for growth) that shows how it will meet its community's housing needs. This process is repeated every eight years, and for this cycle the Bay Area is planning for the period from 2023 to 2031. This Housing Element update will create a foundation for all the policies and programs related to housing. Each jurisdiction's housing plan needs to help ensure that there will be enough capacity and supportive policies to meet the projected need over the next 10 years. There are many laws that govern this process, and collectively they are known as Housing Element Law.By April 1st of each year, all local jurisdictions in California are required to prepare and submit an Annual Progress Report (APR) on the status and progress in implementing its Housing Element. Cities and counties with a compliant housing element and up-to-date submissions of APRs remain eligible for state grants and funding related to planning and housing. The APR evaluates the status of the implementation programs and housing production for the previous calendar year.
The Regional Housing Need Allocation (RHNA) process is the part of Housing Element Law used to determine how many new homes, and the affordability of those homes, each local government must plan for in its Housing Element.
The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) develops a state-wide housing needs determination (RHND) number, based on projected housing needs in various income categories as outlined in the table below:
Regional Housing Needs Determination from HCD for the San Francisco Bay Area:
HCD further breaks the RHND into regional assignments, and then allocates a lump number of units to each area’s regional coalition of governments (COG). The Bay Area’s COG is the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG).
This number is then assigned by the COG to the various jurisdictions within the region. This known as the Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA; pronounced ree-nuh) process. The State is currently in the sixth cycle of this allocation process, known as "RHNA 6."
In 2019 ABAG established a Housing Methodology Committee (HMC) charged with developing a distribution formula by which to allocate the cycle 6 RHND number. The HMC consists of elected officials and staff from each county, as well as stakeholders from interest groups.Any methodology developed by the HMC must satisfy the many statutory requirements for RHNA distribution, including:
Using the above requirements as a guide, the final RHNA methodology recommended by the HMC assigns a total number of housing units to each Bay Area jurisdiction and distributes that allocation among the four affordability levels.
The RHNA process is currently underway and will be complete by the end of 2021. Local governments will then have until January 2023 to update their Housing Elements. The proposed timing for the key milestones in the RHNA process is shown below:
For current housing element issues and more details on our RHNA numbers, please visit our Housing page. In addition, more information can be found at the Let's Talk Housing website.
If you are planning to construct a new building, alter an existing building or change the use of a business you may need a planning permit. Common projects that may require planning approval include:
You should contact a city planner to determine what, if any, planning approvals may be necessary for your project. You can speak to a planner at the Planning and Building counter in City Hall or call 650-616-7074 to make an appointment.
The specific zoning district for every property can be found on the San Bruno Zoning Map. Please contact the Planning Division to confirm the zoning of your property at 650-616-7074.
Starting a new business is an exciting yet complex venture. The City of San Bruno would like to assist you through this process. Each business need is different and not all processes will apply to everyone. Establishing the business may require a number of reviews, completed forms and approvals from not only the City, but from other governmental agencies including the County, State and Federal governments.Please review the City's booklet, "Starting a Business in San Bruno" to help guide you throughout the process. You and your business are important to us. If you have any questions, we encourage you to give us a call at 650-616-7074.
A fence may be up to six feet in height in the back yard and side yard (to the rear of the required front yard) of any dwelling. An additional two feet of lattice may be placed on top of a fence or wall, so that the height does not exceed eight feet.In the front yard of any dwelling, a fence may not exceed three feet in height.A fence may not be installed within 25-feet of the street corner of a corner lot. The Community Development Director may allow such a fence if it would not create a solid visual barrier or safety hazard within the immediate area. In no case shall a fence, hedge, wall or screen exceed three feet in height when situated within twenty five feet of street corner or corner lot.
A Variance is a permit that allows a landowner to construct a building or open a business without having to comply with the standards required of other landowners in the same zone. In rare instances, the Planning Commission may find that because of special circumstances of the property, such as size, shape, topography, location, or surroundings, the strict application of the zoning ordinance will deprive the property owner of privileges enjoyed by other properties in the vicinity and under similar zone.The classic example involves a residential lot that is identical in size and shape to surrounding lots, but suffers from the presence of a large, immovable boulder. In this case, a variance waiving ordinary setback requirements may permit the landowner to build a house. However, economic hardship cannot form the basis for a variance.
Typically, the swimming pool opens in the middle of June and closes at the end of September.
Inflatable jumpers are currently only allowed at Beckner Shelter at San Bruno City Park. The area must be reserved in order to obtain access to the power source. Other San Bruno City Parks and picnic areas do not have electricity to inflate a jumper. The noise from a generator is also too loud in a park setting. In addition, jumpers are not allowed due to the increased liability issues that may arise.
The San Bruno Park hours are from 5 am to 10 pm.
San Bruno City Park is located at 251 City Park Way. To find it on mapquest, use our intersection of Crystal Springs Avenue and Oak Avenue.
The Recreation Services Department office hours are 8 am to 9 pm, Monday through Thursday, 8 am to 5 pm on Fridays, and 9 am to 1 pm on Saturdays. We are open during the lunch hour to accept registration and reservations.
Although youth sports' sign-ups are held at the Recreation Center, the individual sports organizations actually process the registrations. The Recreation Services staff never takes registrations for non-departmental youth sports. Youth sports' contact names and phone numbers can be found in the Recreation Services Department Quarterly Activity Guide.
San Mateo County Health Department is your primary source of information for COVID-19. Please visit their website for responses to the frequently asked questions and latest updates.San Mateo County Health Department is also working closely with the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to respond to novel coronavirus and its potential impacts on the Bay Area.The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends various precautionary measures to limit the spread of COVID-19.
The latest press releases including information on updates and advisories to COVID-19 can be found on the San Mateo County Health website.
Currently, San Mateo County is aligned with the State of California, you can learn about the California's SMARTER Plan at www.covid19.ca.gov/smarter.
SMARTER stands for:
For questions related to concerns about your own personal health, call your doctor. For general non-emergency information about COVID-19, call the county health line at 2-1-1.
A COVID-19 outbreak could last a long time. The impact on individuals, households, and communities may vary. The San Mateo County Health Office will make a determination when the outbreak has ended in your community.The latest press releases including information on updates to COVID-19 can be found on the County of San Mateo Health website.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued a COVID-19 guidance for drinking water and wastewater for the public, reiterating that Americans can continue to use and drink water from their tap. The COVID-19 virus has not been detected in drinking-water supplies and based on current evidence, the risk of water supplies is low, according to the EPA.View the fact sheet (PDF) from the State Water Resources Control Board.The San Bruno Water Division is committed to providing our residents and customers with water that meets all state and federal drinking water standards. The Division will continue to deliver uninterrupted and reliable water service to all of our customers.
Yes. If you are interested in learning more or to register, please visit the County of San Mateo's Health website.
The City of San Bruno remains committed to providing excellent service to members of the public, and maintaining a safe environment for both the public and City staff. In response to COVID-19, the City has modified City services to continue to provide services, and encourages use of connecting with City staff remotely either by phone or online:
Please note that Emergency Police, Fire, and Medical response services are not affected during this time.
911 should be called anytime there is an immediate threat to people’s safety or property. For non-emergency requests, call the Police Department at 650-616-7100.
Residents can pay utility bills using Online Bill Pay or our Pay-By-Phone at 855-748-3086. There is no charge for this service and it's convenient.If you choose to mail your utility payment, please note our Utility Billing address:City of San BrunoAttn: Utility Billing570 Linden AveSan Bruno CA 94066
Pay your CityNet bill with your CityNet online account.
To schedule an inspection, please call 650-616-7076 (automated voicemail system). For all other inquiries please email or call 650-616-7074.
Encroachment permits may be applied for by completing an encroachment permit application and emailing it to us.
Materials from the San Bruno Library or any Peninsula Library System library may be returned in the outside book drop next to the Library entrance at 701 Angus Ave W. The bookdrop is open 24 hours a day.
For a complete list of the San Bruno Library's online resources, including eBooks, streaming movies, magazines, online tutoring and language learning, please see the Library's website.
Create a household plan of action. As part of the household plan, talk with the people who need to be included in your plan, plan ways to care for those who might be at greater risk for serious complications, get to know your neighbors, identify aid organizations in your community, and create an emergency contact list.
For more information on creating a household plan of action, visit the CDC's "Get Your Home Ready for COVID-19" informational page.
If you have questions specific to Health and or businesses regulated by Environmental Health, please visit the San Mateo County Health System website for additional information.For more information on COVID-19, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's website. If you have questions about COVID-19 and need assistance finding information online or clarification regarding the information, a statewide hotline number is available 8 am to 5 pm, 7 days a week at 833-544-2374.
Our City's 89 miles of local streets and roads have not had major repairs in over 30 years, and our residents have told us that they want better street, road and pothole/hazard repair. Unfortunately, there is currently not enough funding to expand the City's street repair program to include residential streets. The city now has a $6 million per year road repair deficit and needs an additional source of locally controlled funding to meet these needs.
In addition to increased street and pothole repair efforts, Measure G provides locally-controlled funding for priorities such as:
To address State takeaways of local funds and responsibly plan for San Bruno's future, the City has embarked on a multi-year, multi-pronged fiscal sustainability effort. After robust community engagement - including engaging 18,000 households and obtaining over 1,400 community survey responses, the City council unanimously acted to place Measure G on the ballot for voter consideration.
Measure G is a $0.005 local sales tax for our city. If approved by voters, the rate in San Bruno would be changed to 9.75%. By law, all funds generated by Measure G must stay in and benefit San Bruno and cannot be taken by Sacramento.
Measure G includes strict accountability provisions, including independent citizens oversight, mandatory financial audits, and yearly reports to the community to ensure the funds are spent appropriately.
Coastal flood maps represent "snapshots" of flood risk for a local area at the time the study was performed. Flood maps can become obsolete as physical conditions change, or as our understanding of local flooding and flood effects improves. Obsolete flood maps have consequences for life safety (individuals may be living at risk and not know it), insurance reasons (flood insurance premiums may no longer reflect actual flood risk), and for land use and building permit reasons (development, building design, and post-flood recovery decisions are no longer tied to the nature and severity of flood hazards). Thus, it is in the best interest of the community and its citizens to maintain up-to-date flood hazard maps.
New flood studies are undertaken and flood maps are updated for a number of reasons, including:
According to FEMA's records, eight of the top 10 most expensive disasters in our Nation were caused by hurricanes. During these disasters, thousands of homes were destroyed, lives were disrupted, and many people were killed. Understanding coastal risks and then taking steps to make our homes and communities more resilient makes sense both on an economic and human level.
FEMA understands it may seem unlikely that it will flood in your community, especially as you and possibly even your neighbors, parents, or others may not ever remember flooding there. But changes in your community can send water flowing in new directions, creating flood risks that never existed before.
Be aware that every flood and every storm is different. For instance, there were some communities in Louisiana that flooded during Hurricane Isaac (2012) but did not flood during Hurricane Katrina (2005). Although Isaac was much weaker than Katrina, Isaac moved very slowly and caused flooding in areas that the faster-moving, stronger Katrina had not.
FEMA is using the latest science and technology available to make your flood maps more accurate with the ultimate goal of protecting you, your home or business, and your community from flood-related losses. FEMA is also working with your local officials to use the information in your new flood map to better plan community development and protect your community from the devastation floods can cause.
Zone AE is the area subject to inundation by the base (1-%-annual-chance) flood event. Zone VE is also area subject to inundation from the base flood, but with additional hazards due to storm-induced velocity wave action. Base Flood Elevations (BFEs) derived from detailed hydraulic analyses are shown. Mandatory flood insurance purchase requirements and floodplain management standards apply in both zones.
The base (1-%-annual-chance, or 100-year) flood standard was adopted for the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) after various alternatives were considered. The standard constitutes a reasonable compromise between the need for building restrictions to minimize potential loss of life and property and the economic benefits of floodplain development. The Base (1-%-annual-chance) Flood Elevation (BFE) has been adopted by the NFIP as the basis for floodplain management and flood insurance regulations.
The issuance of a preliminary Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) does not impact flood insurance rates. When FEMA releases a preliminary FIRM and Flood Insurance Study (FIS) report for a community, caution must be exercised in using this data. For insurance purposes, preliminary FIRMs and FIS reports cannot be used to make official flood determinations. The currently effective FIRM is the only official document for this purpose.
However, for regulatory purposes, preliminary FIRMs and FIS reports may be used by the community. Local regulations usually allow for the use of the best available data, and in most instances, the data provided on the preliminary FIRMs is much better than the older data on the currently effective FIRMs. The use of preliminary maps as "best available data" is only allowable when the preliminary data are more conservative than the effective data; i.e. the elevations of the base (1-%-annual-chance) flood are higher or the Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) is more extensive. Please contact your community's floodplain administrator to determine whether preliminary data is being used by your community and whether it has any impact on construction or other use of your property.
FEMA recognizes that communities have many priorities competing for their time, attention, and funding. FEMA also believes that public safety is a top priority of all communities. Understanding the flood risk for a community and taking action to mitigate that risk saves lives, property, and the heartache caused by a flood.
Coastal flood study methods and the specific modeling software used are tailored to the coastline characteristics and the nature of coastal flood events.
For example, the Wave Height Analysis for Flood Insurance Studies (WHAFIS) model is used for analyses of low-lying areas subject to overland flooding and waves. However, WHAFIS is not appropriate for analysis of coastal dune or bluff areas that are subject to erosion and wave runup; other procedures and models are used in these areas. Some studies consider hurricane effects while others consider northeasters or Pacific storms or tsunamis; some studies consider multiple flood types. Great Lakes studies consider fluctuating lake levels and ice cover.
However, all coastal flood studies:
In the late 1990s through the mid-2000s, FEMA made a significant effort to convert paper maps into a digital format to increase their usefulness in flood risk analyses and associated flood risk mitigation efforts. In recent years, as part of the initiation of the Risk Mapping, Assessment, and Planning (Risk MAP) program, FEMA is investigating entire watersheds instead of individual counties because this made the most sense scientifically. Floods do not stop at political boundaries.
Although new maps may have been issued recently, much of the underlying study information in coastal areas across the U.S. has not been updated for decades. In recent years, FEMA has initiated studies along the entire populated U.S. coastline because of the significant and sometimes dangerous flood risks along the coast. Where possible, FEMA has combined these studies, but in some cases, studies have overlapped. FEMA requests your patience and support as we seek to better understand this country's coastal flood risks, and equip communities and families with appropriate information so they may protect themselves from catastrophic loss.
For coastal flood hazard mapping, the existing repository of historical observational data (e.g. hurricane winds and barometric pressure, high-water marks, wave conditions, pre- and post-storm beach profiles) is relatively small, and therefore insufficient for use in predicting coastal flood elevations. As a result, when performing coastal studies, FEMA and mapping partners rely more heavily on the modeling of wave and erosion processes and storm surge (water that is pushed toward the shore by the force of winds swirling around a storm) to predict coastal flood elevations.
FEMA works to create the most accurate FIRMs possible. Accuracy can be impacted by the quality of the underlying data, and the assumptions and approximations that must be made when conducting a coastal study. The accuracy of a coastal study depends directly on several parameters:
In an effort to improve the accuracy and resolution of topographic and bathymetric data, FEMA and mapping partners (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and others) are using Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) technology to gather data for many coastal studies. This topographic collection approach represents a higher level of accuracy over traditional methods.
Study accuracy also depends on:
FEMA readily shares methodology and data, and welcomes new information that will make the mapped flood hazard information even more accurate. It is important to note, however, that even when SFHAs are mapped with high precision for existing conditions, new residential and commercial development and natural changes in weather patterns may, over time, change conditions sufficiently to require a restudy to update the study to the new conditions.
FEMA's coastal flood studies and coastal flood hazard mapping, like all other hazard studies and maps, are not perfect. Some uncertainty will always be associated with Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) limits and Base (1-%-annual-chance) Flood Elevations (BFEs). Through our modeling procedures, FEMA strives to reduce the uncertainty and to calculate the average of the likely range of BFEs.
In other words, the elevations and lines shown on the FIRMs are just as likely to under-predict the true 1-%-annual-chance flood conditions as they are to over-predict them.
Please note that flood risk exists even for structures located outside the SFHA. Past floods have exceeded the 1-%-annual-chance flood and future floods may as well. About one in five NFIP claims come from property owners whose structures are located outside the mapped SFHA.
Often the coastlines of entire states or an entire area, such as the Great Lakes, are included in one coastal study. Due to the large scale of FEMA's coastal flood studies, many are performed using clusters of high-powered computers to calculate components (e.g. storm surge, wave conditions) of a coastal flood. Such computing power is necessary to capture the physics of water moving over highly detailed topography and bathymetry.
The computer models calculate water levels and wave effects in areas that can be several hundred miles across, at hundreds of thousands (or sometimes millions) of points every few seconds during each simulation. Typically, 100 to 200 storms or coastal flood events are simulated for a coastal flood study.
FEMA is sensitive to the needs of property owners and community officials who believe the flood hazard information shown on a new or updated FIRM or accompanying Flood Insurance Study (FIS) is incorrect. Therefore, the study procedures, data, and results are documented throughout a coastal flood study and are available for review by those individuals or communities considering an appeal.
Although it is true that replicating an entire coastal flood study will be time-consuming and expensive, a review of the study documentation can help focus an appeal on certain aspects of the study, including, but not limited to, the following:
The first and last items listed above (topography and overland wave hazard modeling) have a significant influence on the Base (1-%-annual-chance) Flood Elevations (BFEs) and Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) boundaries and/or zone designations (Zones VE or AE) produced by a coastal flood study, and do not require high-powered computers and sophisticated models to appeal. In fact, challenging results based on these two items is no more complicated today than it was before the advent of supercomputers. Many appeals and revision requests are still submitted and granted using local topographic data, desktop computers, and readily-available models.
The latest models resolve the flow of water or waves in two horizontal directions, and they are referred to as 2-D models. Simpler, 1-D models resolve flow or waves in one direction. Each has advantages and disadvantages. For now, FEMA uses both types of models. It uses 2-D wave models in the ocean and in bays, and a 1-D model-Wave Height Analysis for Flood Insurance Studies (WHAFIS) - over land.
On a large scale, 2-D wave models offer certain advantages over simplified wave analyses-the 2-D models better capture the physics of wave propagation, account for waves changing direction in response to bathymetric features.
However, the 2-D models still have some unresolved technical and computational issues related to overland wave propagation:
WHAFIS captures the key aspects of waves moving along a specified transect over land and has been used successfully applied to many flood studies and flood map revisions.
The use of WHAFIS on land does not eliminate the use of 2-D wave models seaward of the shoreline. 2-D wave models are still used by modern flood studies to transform waves from deep water to the shoreline, at which point the 2-D wave characterization can be used as an input to WHAFIS. WHAFIS will be eventually be replaced as 2-D models become able to handle topography and development characteristics on a finer scale; but until that time, FEMA will continue to use WHAFIS.
Please also note that Letters of Map Revision (LOMRs) that are based on better topography or changed site conditions can now be carried out with relatively little effort and at modest cost using WHAFIS. Use of a 2-D overland wave model would make these map revisions more challenging and expensive. At some point in the future, when 2-D models overcome the technical issues mentioned above, and as their use becomes more widespread, flood studies and flood map revisions using the 2-D overland wave models will become feasible.
Even a small difference in the 1-%-annual-chance water level or wave height can change a BFE from one whole foot to another. Larger differences in BFEs can result when:
The Limit of Moderate Wave Action (LiMWA) is the location where the 1-%-annual-chance wave height equals 1.5 feet. FEMA began showing the LiMWA on Flood Insurance Rate Maps to communicate the higher risk that exists in the area. Because the 1.5-foot breaking wave in the LiMWA zone can potentially cause foundation failure, communities are encouraged to adopt building construction standards similar to Zone VE in those areas.
Residents and business owners living or working in the LiMWA zone should be aware of the potential wave action along with floating debris, erosion and scour that could cause significant damage on their property. They are encouraged to build safer and higher to minimize the risk to life and property.
Like any other Base (1-%-annual-chance) Flood Elevation (BFE) zone break or Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) boundary on a coastal FIRM, the LiMWA's position is calculated along overland wave propagation analysis transects and interpolated between the transects. Transect locations are selected so they are representative of topographic and land use/land cover characteristics on either side. Interpolation takes these same factors into consideration.
Building codes use the LiMWA to identify the "Coastal A Zone" (e.g., the area where base flood wave heights are between 1.5 and 3 feet), where certain design and construction requirements are instituted. Because of the presence of damaging waves, VE Zone design, construction, and certification practices are recommended, though not required by the National Flood Insurance Program, in the LiMWA. Recommendations include:
No. The LiMWA currently has no bearing on flood insurance premium rates. Zone AE areas that are both seaward and landward of the LiMWA will be rated the same for flood insurance purposes.
A PFD is defined as a continuous or nearly continuous mound or ridge of sand with relatively steep seaward and landward slopes immediately landward and adjacent to the beach and subject to erosion and overtopping from high tides and waves during major coastal storms. The inland limit of the primary frontal dune occurs at the point where there is a distinct change from a relatively steep slope to a relatively mild slope.
Areas designated as Zone VE, by definition, must at a minimum extend to the inland limit of the PFD. Primary frontal dunes are mapped as Zone VE because of their important role as the first line of defense against flooding. The Zone VE designation ensures that dunes are not subject to manmade alterations in a way that could increase potential flood damage. The Zone VE designation also reflects the potential risk of erosion and undermining of structures that exists for primary frontal dunes.
Taken as a whole, the mapping process, from inception to final map adoption, can take several years.
There are three primary reasons for the length of a study from project inception through final map adoption:
It is important for our Nation to have accurate flood hazard information. This information is used by communities to plan for disaster resiliency and by individual property owners to protect themselves and their assets. Coastal flood studies are complicated and many stakeholders may be involved in their development, including:
Because coastal studies can involve the entire coastline of a state or multiple states as in the case of the Great Lakes Coastal Flood Study, the number of stakeholders who have an interest or relevant information for the study is multiplied dramatically. FEMA must engage hundreds or even thousands of communities. This coordination takes time, but FEMA believes the ultimate product is improved with their involvement.
In addition to the stakeholder engagement and coordination needed, coastal studies are technically complex. Coastal flood studies use sophisticated computer models and complex statistical analyses covering areas that are hundreds of miles across, capturing detailed ground elevations, land characteristics, and modeled surge and waves.
Gathering and formatting the input data requires attention to detail and exacting quality control. Running the models and checking the outputs requires time. Translating the verified outputs into Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs) and Base (1-%-annual-chance) Flood Elevations (BFEs) is the next step, which is guided by FEMA's guidelines and standards. Draft maps must be checked carefully (and revised, when necessary) before Preliminary versions of FIRMs are created and distributed to communities and other stakeholders. Everything must be documented and reviewed.
Once a preliminary FIRM is produced and distributed, the review and appeal period can extend for one year or more. After a standard review and comment period, a meeting is scheduled by FEMA’s Regional Office staff and community officials. Unless significant technical concerns are raised before or during that meeting, FEMA will then initiate a statutory 90-day appeal period whenever new or revised flood hazard information is proposed. During this period, community officials and property owners have the opportunity to submit appeals and comments regarding the BFEs shown on the preliminary FIRM or in the accompanying FIS report. When the 90 day period is complete and all appeals have been resolved, a six-month “adoption/compliance” period begins. During this time, the community enacts any new or modified floodplain management ordinances required for participation in the National Flood Insurance Program.
FEMA maps coastal flood hazards based on existing shoreline characteristics, and wave and storm climatology at the time of the flood study. In accordance with the current Code of Federal Regulations, FEMA does not map flood hazards based on anticipated future sea levels or climate change. Over the lifespan of a study, changes in flood hazards from sea level rise and climate change are typically not large enough to affect the validity of the study results.
In accordance with the Biggert-Water Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012, FEMA is to establish a Technical Mapping Advisory Council that will provide recommendations to FEMA on flood hazard mapping guidelines-including recommendations for future mapping conditions, the impacts of sea level rise and future development. FEMA will be required to incorporate future risk assessment in accordance with the recommendations of the Council.
The Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) produced by FEMA and the Hurricane Inundation/Evacuation Maps produced by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) maps are fundamentally different. NOAA's Hurricane Inundation/Evacuation Maps depict areas that are subject to hurricane surge inundation for established storm intensities (usually the Saffir-Simpson scale). The FIRMs depict the areas subject to inundation by the 1-%-annual-chance flooding and the water surface elevations having a 1-%-annual-chance of exceedance.
There are no consistent probabilities of flooding associated with the NOAA inundation/evacuation maps. There are no storm categories associated with FIRMs. There are also differences between the models and the underlying methodologies. For example, NOAA's maps do not incorporate wave effects while FIRMs do.
Thus, there is no direct or consistent comparison between Special Flood Hazard Areas (SFHAs) shown on FIRMs and surge inundation areas shown on Hurricane Inundation/Evacuation Maps; or between Base Flood Elevations (BFEs) and water elevations produced by NOAA's SLOSH (Sea Lake and Overland Surges from Hurricanes) model. For example, the area flooded by the base flood at one location may be roughly equivalent to Category 2 hurricane inundation, but at another nearby area, it may be closer to a Category 1 inundation or a Category 3 inundation.
Beaches are dynamic in nature as they are likely to continue to erode over time due to winds and waves, which reduces the effects of nourishment projects on flood hazards landward of the beach. Therefore, without regular maintenance, a raised or widened beach is only temporary. When coastal flood hazard mapping studies are performed, FEMA takes beach nourishment projects into consideration only when the project is significant (i.e., has the dimensions necessary to affect 1-%-annual-chance flood hazards) and will be maintained for many years. Dunes are also dynamic as they are subject to erosion, overwash, and could be washed away during major storms. Many nourishment projects incorporate a dune - either new or rebuilt - at the landward edge of the beach, although in some cases dunes are enlarged or constructed separately.
Not all nourishment projects will affect the 1-%-annual-chance flood hazard - either because the project is small, the dune lacks vegetation, the community cannot demonstrate a commitment to future maintenance, or other reasons. FEMA's experience evaluating these projects shows:
In order to assure that the analysis includes enough information to accurately depict the flood risk as accurately as possible, FEMA uses the Joint Probability Method.
The Joint Probability Method (JPM) is a statistical approach to determine extreme water levels based on a large number of combinations of storm parameters. This is the primary method used to predict the 1-%-annual-chance storm surge elevation for a coastal flood study. The JPM describes tropical storms using five or six parameters (central pressure, storm size, forward speed, direction, point of landfall or exit or closest approach, and wind speed variation with distance from storm center). Probability distributions are developed for each of the parameters based on local climatology. All possible parameter combinations are simulated using a hydrodynamic model constructed to faithfully represent the bathymetry, topography, and ground cover of the study area.
The JPM was developed in 1975 and has been modified since that time. The most recent modification was to optimize the parameterization of storm characteristics and reduce the number of storm simulations that must be performed to estimate 1-%-annual-chance flood levels; this method is known as JPM-OS (Joint Probability Method - Optimal Sampling).
A synthetic storm is a hypothetical storm that is created using combinations of storm parameters derived from the historical storm record. Because severe coastal storms tend to occur infrequently in a given local area, observed storms do not capture all plausible combinations of important storm parameters. Synthetic storms are created to capture this variability by sampling the statistical distributions of observed storm parameters, and combining these to create additional storms for coastal flood study simulations.
Depending on the study area, tsunami flooding could be a contributor to the 1-percent-annual-chance flood event. In those specific areas, tsunamis have been included in the FEMA flood hazard analysis. Typically, tsunami flooding has a longer recurrence interval than the 1-percent-annual-chance event and therefore is not included in most FEMA Flood Insurance Studies. Check with your local community or FEMA Regional Office to determine if tsunamis are included in your study.
The Coastal Barrier Resources Act (CBRA) of 1982 established the John H. Chafee Coastal Barrier Resources System (CBRS), a defined set of coastal barrier units located along the Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico, Great Lakes, U.S. Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico coasts. These areas are delineated on a set of official maps that are maintained by the Department of the Interior through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS). Most new Federal expenditures and financial assistance, including Federal flood insurance, are prohibited within the CBRS. CBRA does not prevent development, and it imposes no restrictions on development conducted with non-Federal funds. Congress enacted CBRA to minimize the loss of human life, wasteful Federal expenditures, and the damage to natural resources associated with coastal barriers. Because of the implications of CBRA on FEMA programs (such as the National Flood Insurance Program), CBRS boundaries are also shown for informational purposes on FEMA's Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs).
FWS is collaborating with FEMA to conduct a digital conversion of the CBRS maps by 2016. The CBRS digital conversion effort is being conducted concurrently with FEMA’s large-scale effort to modernize its coastal FIRMs. The digital conversion effort will accomplish the following: (1) ensure that the CBRS boundaries depicted on FEMA’s FIRMs are the same as the boundaries depicted on FWS’s official CBRS maps; (2) fulfill FWS’s responsibility under CBRA to update the CBRS maps at least once every five years to account for natural changes such as erosion and accretion (mandated by Section 3 of P.L. 101-591); and (3) replace the entire set of CBRS maps in a timely and cost-effective manner. Replacing the existing CBRS maps with more accurate and user-friendly updated maps will significantly improve the administration and implementation of CBRA, thereby reducing the number of Federal flood insurance policies, and other financial assistance, provided within the CBRS in error.
Since 2006, CBRS boundaries have been placed on updated FIRMs by FWS through an interagency agreement with FEMA. However, the CBRS boundaries shown on the FIRMs are for informational purposes only and can serve as a first alert that a property may be located within the CBRS. Until the digital conversion effort is completed for the entire CBRS (projected completion timeframe is 2016), there may be discrepancies in the depiction of CBRS unit boundaries on the FIRMs and on the official CBRS maps maintained by FWS.
Because the official CBRS maps can be difficult to interpret, in November 2012, FWS released to the public an interactive CBRS mapper that can be used to help determine whether a property may be located within the CBRS. The digital CBRS boundaries depicted in the mapper are the best available representations of the official CBRS boundaries and should not be relied on for determining whether a property located close to a CBRS boundary is "in" or "out" of the CBRS (i.e., the area identified within the "CBRS Buffer Zone" on the mapper). If a property is covered by or touches the "CBRS Buffer Zone", an official determination from FWS is recommended.
When completing detailed engineering studies, FEMA, or its mapping partners, establishes temporary benchmarks, also called elevation reference marks, in the vicinity of the floodplain to aid in data collection.
Upon publication of the studies, FEMA initially chose to include such information on the FIRMs and within the Flood Insurance Study report. However, FEMA and, in some instances, the community do not actively maintain these temporary benchmarks.
Because it cannot be guaranteed that the benchmarks have remained undisturbed, FEMA elects not to include such benchmark information on subsequent FIRM revisions.
In some VE zones, it is not uncommon to have ground elevations at or above the Base (1-%-annual-chance) Flood Elevation (BFE), particularly along shorelines with well-developed dune fields. Having a mapped Zone VE with a BFE at or below grade seems counterintuitive, but it is possible because of two VE Zone mapping considerations:
Mitigation is best employed at the time a coastal building is planned and designed, because that affords an opportunity to maximize mitigation benefits while minimizing mitigation costs.
For new construction, mitigation efforts can best be directed at the following:
If a property owner has an existing building and wants to make it more hazard resistant, the building can be "retrofitted." While it is preferable to design and build in a hazard-resistant method originally, there are steps an owner of an existing building can take, particularly with respect to wind and wind-driven rain resistance. Improving the flood resistance of an existing building often involves elevating the building on a new foundation.
Other helpful tips include:
Yes. Though participating communities are required to adopt the most current Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM), communities are free to regulate to higher standards than the flood hazard information shown on the latest FIRM.
In building code terms, this means adopting a design flood greater and higher than that which is shown on FEMA's latest flood map. Some communities take new maps with lower Base (1-%-annual-chance) Flood Elevations (BFEs) as an opportunity to require freeboard, without requiring buildings to be elevated higher than has been customary. By maintaining locally-required building elevations at or near prior BFEs, property owners may be eligible to receive substantial flood insurance premium discounts, both individually and as a community.
My home was destroyed in a fire and my local building code official is telling me I have to elevate my replacement home due to flood concerns. My homeowners insurance will not cover the additional cost to elevate. How is that fair?
FEMA recognizes that communities have many priorities competing for their time, attention, and funding. FEMA also believes that public safety is a top priority of all communities. Understanding your community's hazard risks and taking action to mitigate that risk saves lives, property, and the heartache caused by disasters.
The elevation requirement is based on the flood risk to your property. Your original home was probably built before the latest flood study and maps were completed for your area. The community adopts floodplain management regulations and periodically adopts new flood maps to minimize flood risk to development, and in return for reducing flood risk, the Federal government makes flood insurance and other assistance available to residents of the community. One such floodplain management regulation is that new construction must be elevated to the Base (1-%-annual-chance) Flood Elevation (BFE), or higher if the community requires elevation above the BFE.
This situation arises when a homeowner in a flood hazard area does not carry flood insurance and the home is damaged by a flood. Homeowner's insurance will not cover the cost of elevation unless the owner purchased separate coverage that pays for the costs of meeting whatever building requirements exist when a building is rebuilt. If the owner had carried flood insurance, however, the flood policy would have paid up to $30,000 toward the cost of elevation.
While it may seem unfair to have this requirement, studies have found for every $1 spent on mitigation, such as elevating above the floodplain, approximately $4 is saved in losses avoided. There may be grants or low-interest loans available that will help you rebuild at the required elevation. You should check with the community floodplain administrator.
New construction includes anything that is normally thought of as a “new” building, as well as any building that is a replacement for an existing building that is heavily damaged or destroyed, regardless of the cause (“substantially damaged” according to community and National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) regulations). The NFIP defines substantial damage as “damage of any origin sustained by a structure whereby the cost of restoring the structure to its pre-damaged condition would equal or exceed 50 percent of the market value of the structure before the damage occurred.” The requirement that replacements of substantially-damaged buildings must be elevated to or above the BFE is central to the long-term goal of reducing flood damage in a community. Owners can continue to occupy and use non-conforming buildings until such time as those buildings are substantially damaged. After that, any replacement building must conform to the latest flood elevation requirements.
Development may take place within the SFHA if it complies with local floodplain ordinances, which must meet Federal requirements. Communities participating in the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) must at least require that new construction or substantial improvements of residential structures in the SFHA be elevated so that the lowest floor (including the basement) is at or above the Base (1-%-annual-chance) Flood Elevation. A community in the NFIP must also require permits for all new development in the SFHA and ensure that the construction materials and methods will minimize future flood damage. Permit files must document how buildings were actually constructed.
The floodplain management requirements for the SFHA are designed to prevent new development from increasing the flood threat and to protect new and existing buildings from anticipated flood events. FEMA works closely with states and local communities to identify flood hazard areas and risks. When a community joins the NFIP, it agrees to adopt the required floodplain management regulations and to ensure that its enforcement procedures meet NFIP requirements. In return, the Federal Government makes flood insurance available for almost every building and its contents within the community.
Please note that communities are encouraged to adopt higher standards than those of the NFIP. Check with your local officials for information regarding your community's specific floodplain development standards, which may include further limits on development in the SFHA.
Under the minimum National Flood Insurance Program regulations, you are not required to elevate your home out of the floodplain unless you are located within a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) and if you're making substantial improvements to your home, or if your home has been damaged and you are now required to meet certain building requirements.
The only times that you may be required to elevate your home within a SFHA is when you're making significant improvements to your home or if your home has been severely damaged and you are now required to meet certain building requirements.
If you are required to elevate your home due to recent flood damage and you have a standard flood insurance policy, your coverage (specifically the Increased Cost of Compliance (ICC) portion of your coverage) will pay up to $30,000 to comply with your community's building requirements if the home is damaged more than 50% of the market value.
The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) does not seek to encourage unwise development in high-risk flood hazard areas. The NFIP was created by Congress to offer flood insurance in return for participating local community's adoption and enforcement of flood-resistant design and construction standards. The NFIP program is estimated to save the Nation $1.6 billion annually in avoided flood losses.
Congress changed the law in 1973 to mandate flood insurance coverage for many properties. Since this time, Federally regulated lending institutions cannot make, increase, extend, or renew any loan secured by improved real property located in a Special Flood Hazard Area in a participating community, unless the secured building and any personal property securing the loan were covered for the life of the loan by a flood insurance policy. Changing the law was necessary because, after major flooding disasters, it became evident that relatively few individuals in eligible communities who sustained flood damage had purchased flood insurance.
In accordance with the Flood Disaster Protection Act of 1973 and the National Flood Insurance Reform Act of 1994, flood insurance is required for all structures in a Special Flood Hazard Area (SFHA) that carry a home mortgage loan backed by a federally regulated lender or servicer. For virtually every mortgage transaction involving a structure in the United States, the lender reviews the current National Flood Insurance Program maps to determine the property’s location relative to the published SFHA. This review occurs anytime a Federally backed loan is can made, increased, extended, or renewed.
The mortgage lender, or a determination company hired by the mortgage lender, typically determines whether a structure is in a SFHA, and if flood insurance is required. If they determine that a home or business is located in a high-risk area, they then inform the owner or potential buyer that flood insurance is required to receive the loan.
If you have an elevation certificate, which verifies the elevation of the lowest floor of your house, you should bring it with you for any meeting with a flood insurance agent. This is especially important if your house/building is in a Special Flood Hazard Area, since rates in SFHAs can vary depending on how high your building is relative to the Base (1-percent-annual-chance) Flood Elevation.
The National Flood Insurance Program is a Federal program offering flood insurance that can be purchased from most leading insurance companies. Rates are set and do not differ from company to company or agent to agent.
Just a few inches of water from a flood can cause tens of thousands of dollars in damage. From 2007 to 2011, the average residential flood claim amounted to almost $30,000. Flood insurance is the best way to protect yourself from devastating financial loss. Flood insurance is available to homeowners, renters, condo owners/renters, and commercial owners/renters. Costs vary depending on how much insurance is purchased, what it covers and the property's flood risk.
FEMA knows that flood insurance, especially when it becomes required unexpectedly, may be difficult for people to afford. Flood insurance helps protect you from the financial burden that flooding can cause - the average flood insurance claim from 2007 to 2011 was around $30,000. There are things you can do to make flood insurance as affordable as possible:
Also, if your community participates in the National Flood Insurance Program's Community Rating System (CRS), you could qualify for a flood insurance discount of between five and 45% if your property is in the Special Flood Hazard Area. Communities that participate in CRS may also have elevation certificates on file for individual homes or businesses. Check with your tax assessor's office or planning and zoning commission to determine if an elevation certificate is available for your home or business.
Your insurance agent can help you work through all of the options to make sure your payments are as low as possible.
Yes. If a property owner has an existing building and wants to make it more hazard resistant and reduce flood insurance premiums, the building can be "retrofitted." While it is preferable to design and build in a hazard-resistant method originally, there are steps an owner of an existing building can take, particularly with respect to wind and wind-driven rain resistance. Improving the flood resistance of an existing building often involves elevating the building on a new foundation. FEMA provides hazard mitigation grants to states for activities such as structure elevation, property acquisition, and flood-proofing. When completed, these activities can reduce or eliminate risk, which may result in lower flood insurance rates.
It is not FEMA's intention that homeowners pay for extensive engineering studies to obtain supporting documentation for a LOMA request. For most LOMA requests, the only elevation information that must be submitted is the Lowest Adjacent Grade (LAG) - the elevation of the lowest ground touching the structure, including stairs, attached deck, or garage - or the lowest lot elevation, which must be certified by a licensed land surveyor or professional engineer who is authorized by State or local law to certify elevation information. You may find it less expensive to provide the certified LAG or lowest lot elevation in a letter from a professional surveyor or engineer or to complete Section B of the MT-EZ forms packet, than to obtain a complete property survey or Elevation Certificate. You may also wish to contact the FEMA Map Information exchange, toll free at 1-877 FEMA MAP (877-336-2627) for assistance with the LOMA process.
You need a business license from the city. Please see Business License or Permit cost for more information on what type of business require a license and costs.
According to the San Bruno Municipal Code 3.08.020, it is unlawful for any person to commence, transact or carry on any business without first having procured a license from the City to do so. Those with home occupation businesses, apartment owners (with three or more living units), persons with commercial property rentals, outside contractors working in town on a project are all required to obtain City licenses. Contact the San Bruno Portal at 650-273-4371 for more information.
Contact the Planning Division 650-616-7074 first to make sure that the business would meet zoning requirements.
Garbage collection is provided by Recology San Bruno. The City provides billing services on behalf of the Recology San Bruno. For detailed information regarding garbage and recycling collection, collection dates, or scheduling extra service, please contact Recology San Bruno at 650-583-8536.
The Utility Billing office is located in San Bruno City Hall located at:567 El Camino RealSan Bruno, CA 94066
PG&E payments are not accepted by the City of San Bruno. To find a local office, please contact PG&E directly at 800-743-5000.
We are on a 5-year rate plan, and in the 5th year of rate increases.
You can contact Utility Billing of the Finance Department for any questions or concerns you may have:Utility Billing570 Linden AvenueSan Bruno, CA 94066Phone: 650-616-7086Fax: 650-876-0256
Utility services may be disconnected if you fail to pay past due charges on your utility statement. A reconnect service fee of $90 (before 2 pm) or $150 (after 2 pm) will be imposed to restore service. Any unauthorized attempt to establish service will result in a meter-tampering fine of $750 per occurrence.
For more information, please contact the Finance Department at 650-616-7086.
All water customers are billed a monthly service fee depending on the size of the water meter installed at the service location and a per unit charge for water consumed. You can find all rates in the Water and Wastewater Notice (PDF).
To report a water or wastewater leak or emergency, please contact the Corporation Yard at 650-616-7160.
The wastewater rates are calculated based on the average water usage between November and April. These months are used because residents generally water their lawns the least during these winter months. The average water usage between November and April is then used as the basis for wastewater charge from July through June of the following year.
View the Water and Wastewater Notice (PDF) to learn more abut the current rates, or contact the Finance Department at 650-616-7086 for more information.
Tiers 1, 2 and 3 are the different rates charged for the amount of metered water consumed (measured by units). For all single family residential accounts, units 1 through 10 are billed at a lower rate to encourage water conservation and to minimize the rate increase impact to low water consumption customers. Units 11 through 20 are billed at a higher rate in Tier 2. Units above 21 are billed at the highest rate in Tier 3. All other accounts (apartments, multi-units and commercial accounts) are billed at a flat rate per unit consumed.
View the Current Rates for Water and Wastewater (PDF).
To terminate your Utility Service account please call 650-616-7086 and press Option 4. Office hours are Monday through Friday 8 am to 5 pm.
We will need a forwarding address to send your final closing bill. Your closing bill will not go through auto pay. Final payment can only be submitted as One-Time Payment Online or check by mail.
Currently, we are accepting online applications. Please go to the Start Utility Service page. You may print out the Utility Service Application (PDF), fill it out, and fax it to 650-876-0256. Or you can bring it to the Customer Service desk during our regular business hours of 8 am to 5 pm from Monday through Friday. An initial service fee of $90, $50 of which is refundable, will be charged to new customers.
Information about the current smoke alarm regulation can be found in the Smoke Alarm Requirement Informational Bulletin (PDF).
To learn more about San Bruno Fire's Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program and/or sign up for the next class, visit San Bruno Fire's CERT page. To find out more about Fire Department sponsored CPR classes, visit our CPR page.
Yes, for information about scheduling an appointment visit the Child Car Seat installation page.
Businesses requiring state-mandated inspections are visited annually.
The Fire Department can arrange CPR, fire extinguisher use, and general safety training upon request. Some training sessions have associated costs. Contact the Fire Department through the main business line at 650-616-7096 for scheduling.
The business compliance process for a new business begins at San Bruno's Finance Department, where a permit is issued requiring inspections from the Fire Department and Building Department. Scheduling of appointments for the Fire Department inspection should be coordinated by calling the Fire Department main business line, at 650-616-7096.
Once your business inspection is passed by the Fire Department, a Building Department inspection will be required. This appointment should be made after passing the Fire Department inspection. For your Building Department inspection, you should call 650-616-7074.
Plans should be submitted through San Bruno's Community Development Department, at City Hall, 567 El Camino Real. Only electronic submitals accepted. Visit the Building Department Website for more info
State Fire Marshal operational permits for temporary situations (tents, carnivals, temporary holiday businesses, etc.) are issued at the main fire station at 555 El Camino Real during business hours. Permits are assessed from $202-$301 per permit.
Annually occurring operational fire permit fees are automatically assessed with your business license renewal.
Generally, the Fire Prevention Division can accommodate your inspection request within two business days.
Common inspection violations include:
Before you test a fire sprinkler system or fire alarm system you must notify Fire Dispatch at 650-368-1421 to prevent the Fire Department from responding. Upon completion of the testing you must call Fire Dispatch to advise that the system is back in service.
San Bruno Fire Department does not service fire extinguishers. Please find a professional fire extinguisher service company to perform that task.
San Bruno uses Knox Box brand security key boxes exclusively. These boxes provide emergency key access to businesses, and may also contain information for firefighters regarding such issues as on-site chemical storage. The Fire Department has exclusive access to the boxes, and they are keyed specifically for our city, thus are very secure.
Knox Box orders are performed online, through the Knox Box website.
The San Bruno Fire Department does not have jurisdiction for enforcing spare the air days. To report illegal burning on spare the air days, fill out the Wood Smoke Complaint Form at Bay Area Air Quality Management District's website.
After several large scale disasters like 9-11 and the Loma Prieta earthquake, there was a realization that not all emergency services personnel will be able to reach everyone right away. By attending CERT training classes, you will learn the skills to help save lives and protect property.
San Bruno residents who are at least 16 years of age or older can participate. No matter where you live, no matter who you are, we can all have a role in disaster preparedness
To sign up, contact us at 650-616-7096 or email the CERT Contact.
Active now - online Portion of the class:
Answer goes here...
For information on current jobs with the City of San Bruno, please visit our Current Job Openings page. You may call Human Resources at 650-616-7055, email us, or visit the City of San Bruno Human Resources Department located at 567 El Camino Real.
Yes. A formal City application is required to be completed. Resumes may be attached to a completed application.
The City of San Bruno only accepts applications for open jobs. A separate application is required for each job in which you have an interest.
It depends on the position. The job announcement will describe the application requirements. We often require a supplemental questionnaire be completed.
The Human Resources Department will send out the results within a week or two after the oral exam.
The City of San Bruno only accepts applications for positions that are currently open. For a listing of our current job openings, visit the CalOpps website. To apply with paper application, visit or contact the Human Resources Department. The Human Resources Department will only accept applications received before the deadline, and for positions that the City is currently recruiting.
Come into the Library during open hours or apply online. A library card will be issued to any California resident upon presentation of a valid picture ID with a current address on it. If your ID does not have a current address on it, please bring in official mail, such as a utility bill or credit card bill, for address verification. The first library card is free! If you are under 18 years of age, you will need to bring in a parent or guardian to get a library card.
The total number of items on any one card at any given time is 50 items for all the libraries. Specific item limits and loan periods vary according to what you are checking out.
San Bruno Public Library is fine free as of September 1, 2021.
However, lost, damaged and billed fees still apply. Items are billed 30 days after the due date. Lost, damaged and billed fees may be paid in person at the library or online by accessing your library account. If you have received a bill for an item still in your possession, in many cases, returning the item in good condition and in a timely manner will mean you do not have to pay the replacement cost. A billing fee may still apply.
You may pay your Library fees in person at the Library or online by logging onto your Library account.
We have opportunities for teens and adults at the San Bruno Library. Contact the Library at 650-616-7078 or by email for more information on volunteering.
Yes. You will need to create a separate library account at one of the Community College libraries. For more information on how to get a community college library account, please visit OneSearch: Get an Account - Formstack. You will then be able to search their holdings and request items to be picked up on their campuses.
Our delivery service picks up and drops off two times each week at the colleges. The Colleges currently estimate that an item should be received by a requesting library in approximately 10 days.
It varies, depending on how quickly the owning library processes our request and how long it takes for the item to arrive via mail services. Two to three weeks is not unusual.
Yes. Please complete our purchase suggestion form. We are not always able to acquire purchase suggestions. We may refer you back to our interlibrary loan service if we do not purchase your suggestion.
Our City's 89 miles of local streets and roads have not had major repairs in over 30 years, and our residents have told us that they want better street, road and pothole/hazard repair. Unfortunately, there is currently not enough funding to expand the City's street repair program to include residential streets. The city has a $6 million per year road repair deficit and needs an additional source of locally controlled funding to meet these needs.
To address State takeaways of local funds and responsibly plan for San Bruno's future, the City has embarked on a multi-year, multi-pronged fiscal sustainability effort. After robust community engagement - including engaging 18,000 households and obtaining over 1,400 community survey responses, the City council unanimously acted to place Measure G on the ballot for voter consideration. Measure G was passed by the San Bruno voters in November 2019.
Measure G is a 1/2-cent local sales tax for our city, which changes the rate in San Bruno to 9.75%. By law, all funds generated by Measure G must stay in and benefit San Bruno and cannot be taken by Sacramento.
At the July 9 meeting, the Mayor made two motions: to approve the environmental determination for the project, and to approve the architectural review permit. Only three Council members were able to vote because two members announced their recusal from voting on the project, given the proximity of property they own to the site. In such cases, State law (Government Code §3696) requires that all three Council members vote in favor of the project. Both motions did not pass by a 2 to 1 vote.
The "Downtown and Transit Corridors Economic Enhancement Initiative" Proposal - Measure N ballot question was voted and passed by 68.2% of San Bruno voters during the November 4, 2014 election. Besides allowing for the development of 42 residential parcels exceeding the density permitted in 1974 and above-ground multi-story parking garages, the approval of Measure N allowed for the maximum permitted heights and stories in the Transit Corridors Plan (TCP) area.
Specifically related to this Project site, Measure N allowed maximum building heights to increase 20 feet along El Camino Real, 15 feet along San Bruno Avenue, 5 feet along San Mateo Avenue, and 40 feet in the Caltrain Station area. The Transit Corridors Plan and Measure N ballot map clearly show the project site as increasing in height by 20 feet and two stories.
No. In fact, there are 4 other developments in San Bruno that are larger than the proposed Mills Park Center Development Project:
At the July 9 City Council meeting, the Developer agreed to reduce the proposed number of dwelling units by 16 units, from 425 to 409 units.
A project-specific traffic study was prepared for the project, and reviewed by City staff. The traffic study included an evaluation of AM and PM traffic conditions at 19 intersections near the project site, as well as six nearby freeway segments and six freeway ramps, and concluded that the proposed project would not result in any new or substantially more severe significant environmental effects, including traffic impacts, than those analyzed in the TCP Environmental Impact Report. No project-specific mitigation is required. Additionally, the traffic study concluded that the project would not cause significant increases in traffic volumes (i.e., one % or more of freeway capacity) on any of the study freeway segments.
The traffic study also determined that the project would provide both adequate site access and adequate parking with three driveways accessing the garage in Building A (two on El Camino Real and one on White Way), and two driveways accessing the garage in Building B (one on El Camino Real and one on Kains Avenue).The project would be required to implement project-specific Transportation Demand Management measures. These measures are a combination of services, incentives, facilities, and actions that reduce single-occupant vehicle (SOV) trips to help relieve traffic congestion, parking demand, and air pollution problems. For example, the project would include:
The proposed plan included:
There are proposed areas for loading zones and pull-outs adjacent to the curb around the perimeter of the site as to not block traffic lanes or take up on-street parking spaces.
Based on community feedback, the City Council recently revised to increase multi-family parking requirements within the Transit Corridors Plan (TCP) area. The proposed project exceeds the new TCP parking standards by providing an additional 72 parking stalls above the policy requirement.
The following is a summary of proposed parking in the Mills Park Center Development Project and how it will exceed the new revised TCP standards:
The City required the Project to have a residential and commercial parking management plan:
The proposed Project would add public parking on Linden Avenue for City library or municipal center parking.
The proposed project includes two mixed-use buildings with a total of 425 condominium dwelling units, an approximately 41,890 square foot high-end grocery store, and 4,000 square feet of commercial space. The proposed buildings range in height from one to five stories with the tallest portions at the maximum of 70 feet in height, with many building portions below this maximum.
The tallest portions of the buildings would be located along the major corridor streets of El Camino Real and San Bruno Avenue W, transitioning to a one- to three-story building along both White Way and Linden Avenues to address the abutting low-density residential neighborhood to the west.
Consistent with the Transit Corridors Plan (TCP), specific items are allowed to exceed the 70-foot maximum height, up to an additional 10 feet. These items include elevator and mechanical equipment enclosures, and parapets to screen the equipment. The buildings are divided into smaller components with articulated building setbacks and stepbacks. The two buildings would be separated by Kains Avenue.
Camino Plaza and White Way are existing streets that are owned in fee title by the two existing property owners (only public easements are owned by the City).
A portion of the southern portion of White Way and the Camino Plaza right-of-way would both be abandoned. A new dedication for a White Way connection to El Camino Real and a new dedication to widen White Way at San Bruno Avenue (west) for access to the new adjacent medical office building would be provided. Additional public right-of-way would be dedicated to create a right hand turning lane at the intersection of San Bruno Avenue (west) and El Camino Real.
The proposed project was critical in helping San Bruno meet its Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) assigned by the State of California in the Housing Element. The current housing element period covers 8 years from 2015 through 2023. During this period, San Bruno is allocated to issue permits for the construction of 1,155 new housing units. To date, the City has issued permits for the construction of only 119 housing units, leaving a balance of 1,036 housing units to be produced by 2023. Additionally, the City has a remaining RHNA goal of 358 "very low" income units, 136 "low" income units, and 163 "moderate" income units. To date, since no "very low" income units have been issued building permits, and only 25 "low" and 42 "moderate" income units have been issued permits (primarily ADUs), there is a significant need for additional housing in the City, especially at the very low and low income levels.
Permits Issued by the City of San Bruno from 2015 to 2018 plus the Proposed Mills Park Project:
The Property Owner has the ability to decide if they will rent or sell the units as condominiums. The Development Agreement is structured such that the Property Owner must elect to pay an additional $5M public benefit payment prior to initial occupancy, if they want the ability to sell the units as condominiums in the future. Staff anticipates the Property Owner to elect this option, even if they decide to rent the units initially. The prices for the non-affordable units will be based on market rate pricing.
Contact information for each member of the City Council can be found on the Elected Officials page.
911 should be called anytime there is an immediate threat to peoples safety or property. If you need to contact the Police Department for a 'cold' incident (something that is not happening currently), or any non-emergency situation, please use our non-emergency phone number: 650-616-7100. This keeps the 911 lines clear for those who find themselves in a true emergency situation. If you are not sure if what you are calling for constitutes an emergency, please err on the cautious side and call 911.
The San Bruno Police Department continually accepts applications for Lateral and Pre-Trained Police Officers (Academy graduates). We are also accepting applications, on a continuing basis, for Reserve Police Officer. Candidates must have completed all modules of the Reserve Officer Training Program. To access a list of current job openings at the Police Department, please visit our site at CalOpps.
The San Bruno Police Department provides free vehicle inspections for violations relating to registration and defective vehicle equipment. Vehicle inspections can be requested at the front counter of the Police Department.
Fingerprinting services may be obtained by contacting the San Bruno Police Department Live Scan Unit at 650-616-7100. Fingerprinting is available only at selected times, and appointments are required.
Parking tickets may be paid or contested by via our Online Portal or mailing payments to:Office of Parking ViolationsCity of San BrunoP.O. Box 9003Redwood City, CA 94065-9003Phone: 800-352-7567
Please be sure to include your name, address, citation number and vehicle license plate number when making payment.
If you are an adult and have received a traffic citation and need information, you should call the Traffic Court at 650-363-4300. If you are a juvenile and have received a traffic citation, you should call the Juvenile Traffic Court at 650-312-5383.
In the wrong hands, prescription medications can have fatal consequences. If they are not disposed of properly, they can contaminate the wastewater system. The San Bruno Police Department is one of several law enforcement agencies in the County to house a drop off container for this pilot program. Residents can bring their unused medication and place the items into the marked receptacle located in the Police Department lobby.
The lobby is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Please do not dispose needles or syringes in the receptacle.
Police reports may only be released to authorized parties and according to state law. Reports involving certain types of crime (i.e.; juvenile cases and some sex related crimes) cannot be released to anyone except district attorneys or law enforcement agencies. A report release form, available at the San Bruno Police Department or by following the link below, must be completed and signed by the requesting party and submitted at the Police Department front counter. There is a $7.50 fee for any copied police report.
For more information, or to inquire about the status of your report, or to determine if a report can be released to you, please contact the Records Division at 650-616-7100.
Access the Request for Report Release Form (PDF).
The driver of a vehicle involved in a traffic accident should immediately stop as close to the accident scene as possible without causing a traffic hazard. If there are injuries, the police department should be notified immediately by calling 911. If there are no injuries, the involved parties should exchange information including names, addresses, phone numbers, drivers license numbers, vehicle license numbers and insurance policy numbers.
The driver of any vehicle involved in an accident resulting in any injury, death, or property damage in excess of $750 must report the accident to the Department of Motor Vehicles within ten days by completing a DMV SR-1 form. This form is available from the Department of Motor Vehicles and most insurance companies, or by clicking below.
Access the Report of Traffic Accident Occurring in California.
The Municipal Code defines public nuisances as "conditions and uses that are detrimental to the public health, safety and welfare, that promote blight, or which reduce property values in the city." The code includes regulations to promote the maintenance of property and enhance the appearance, habitability or occupancy, and safety of all structures in the City.
On private property we recommend using San Bruno Responds. You may also email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or leave a message on the Graffiti Hotline at 650-616-7141.
On City property please contact Public Works at 650-616-7160.
On any freeways or state highways please submit a request directly to CalTrans using this form.
On any BART property please submit a request directly to BART using this form.
On CalTrain or SamTrans property please call 800-660-4287.
If you would like to submit a concern, we recommend using San Bruno Responds. If you have a question and would like to speak directly with Code Enforcement please call 650-616-7040.
A common belief is that posting a speed limit will influence drivers to drive at that speed. The facts indicate otherwise. Research conducted in many parts of this country over a span of several decades has shown that drivers are influenced more by the appearance of the highway itself and the prevailing traffic conditions than by the posted speed limit. California's Basic Speed Law requires that:
"No person shall drive a vehicle upon a highway at a speed greater than is responsible or prudent having due regard for weather, visibility, the traffic on, and the surface and width of the highway, and in no event at a speed which endangers the safety of persons or property."
Under California law, the maximum speed limit for any passenger vehicle is now 65 miles per hour (MPH). All other speed limits are called prima facie limits, which "on the face of it" are safe and prudent under normal conditions. Certain prima facie limits are established by law and include the 25 MPH limit in business and residential districts, the 15 MPH limit in alleys, at blind intersections and blind railroad crossings and a part-time 25 MPH limit in school zones when children are going to and from school. These speeds are not always posted but all California motorists are required to know these 10, 20, and 30 mile per hour speed laws.
Intermediate speed limits between 25 and 55 miles per hour may be established by local authorities on the basis of traffic engineering surveys. These surveys include an analysis of roadway conditions, accident records, and the prevailing speed, or 85th percentile, of prudent drivers. If speed limit signs are posted for a lower limit than is considered reasonable, many drivers will simply ignore the signs. At the same time, other drivers will stay within the posted limits. This generally increases the conflicts between faster and slower drivers, reduces the gaps in traffic through which crossings could be made safely and increases the difficulty for pedestrians to judge the speed, of approaching vehicles. Studies have shown that where uniformity of speed is not maintained, accidents generally increase.
The entire City is a C Zone (no floods). No A or B Zones:
If you need a letter for your insurance company, call Administration and Engineering at 650-616-7065.
Traffic signals don't always prevent accidents. They are not always an asset to traffic control. In some instances, total accidents and severe injuries increased after signals were installed. Usually, in such instances, right angle collisions were reduced by the traffic signals, but the total number of collisions, especially the rear-end type, increased.
There are times when the installation of signals results in an increase in the number of pedestrian accidents. Many pedestrians feel secure with a painted crosswalk and a red light between them and an approaching vehicle. The motorist, on the other hand, is not always so quick to recognize these "barriers."
When can a traffic signal be an asset instead of a liability to safety? In order to answer this, traffic engineers have to ask and answer a series of questions:
For additional questions about traffic signals or other traffic-calming measures, please contact Engineering at 650-616-7065.
Basic responsibility for sidewalk repair rests with the adjacent property owner. However, there are some instances-such as when a City tree or utility line caused damage to a sidewalk - that the City would make the repairs. For more information, contact Engineering at 650-616-7065.
For more information on street sweeping, visit the Street Sweeping Schedule page.
An encroachment permit is needed anytime you wish to perform any work or store any item in the public right-of-way. This is the area outside your property that generally includes the sidewalk, curb and gutter, planting strip, driveway cut to your property and the street. An encroachment permit is not only the mechanism by which you gain permission to do work in the right-of-way, but it also assures that your work will be inspected to established standards and, upon acceptance, protects you from potential liability that may otherwise come about by substandard or unauthorized work.
For more information about the encroachment permit and general requirements, visit the Permits page.
If you notice a water main break, please call 650-616-7160 immediately. Do not use the 'Contact Us' or Customer Request Portal.
The City maintains everything up to and including the water meter, therefore, we must have free access. It is illegal to obstruct City access with landscaping, fences, planters, parked vehicles, and the like. It is illegal to enter the City's water meter box for any reason. The property owner must provide a separate shut-off valve between the City meter and the building being serviced. The property owner is responsible for all maintenance within the property.
Bikeways have raised a lot of interest in the past few years. Some cities have built separate off-road bike paths. Many more have painted bike lanes on streets. Others have installed green "Bike Route" signs promoting designated bikeways.
Unfortunately, the cost of both building and maintaining bikeways can be a deterrent. Initial cost can range from a few thousand dollars to paint a lane to a small fortune to build a separate path, including special bridges where needed. The City of San Bruno has established a Bicycle and Pedestrian Committee to tackle some of these issues and has also commenced the development of a Walk n' Bike Plan. For more information, please visit the Community Development Department page.
The posting of generalized warning signs with "SLOW," "CHILDREN AT PLAY," or other similar messages is an often heard neighborhood request. Parental concern for the safety of children in the street near home is often the prompt for these requests, but this widespread public faith in traffic signs is misguided. The times in which such a sign is applicable are infrequent to the point where such signs are ignored by regular drivers. Worse yet, these signs often create a false sense of security for children and parents.
Although some other states have posted such signs widely in residential areas, no factual evidence has been presented to document their success in reducing pedestrian accidents, operating speeds or legal liability. Studies have shown that many types of signs attempting to warn of normal conditions in residential areas have failed to achieve the desired safety benefits. If signs falsely encourage parents and children to believe they have an added degree of protection, a great disservice results.
Because of these serious considerations, California does not recognize, and Federal Standards discourage, use of "Children at Play" signs. Children should be encouraged not to play in the street. Warning signs to the contrary have long been rejected since they are a direct and open suggestion that this behavior is acceptable.
A stop sign is one of our most valuable and effective traffic control devices when used at the right place and under the right conditions. It is intended to help drivers and pedestrians negotiate an intersection by assigning the right-of-way.
Most drivers are reasonable and prudent in following posted traffic regulations; however, when an unreasonable restriction is imposed by placement of an unwarranted stop sign, it may result in flagrant violations. In such cases, the stop sign can create a false sense of security to a pedestrian and an attitude of contempt by a motorist. These two attitudes can and often do conflict with tragic results.
Where stop signs are installed for speed control, there is a high incidence of intentional violation. In those locations where vehicles do stop, the speed reduction is effective only in the immediate vicinity of the stop sign, and frequently speeds are actually higher between intersections. For these reasons, a stop sign should not be used as a speed control device.
Well-developed, nationally recognized guidelines help to indicate when such controls become necessary. These guidelines take into consideration the volume of traffic, sight distance, accident history, and the frequency of other existing stop controls.
You can download the Transportation Permit Application (PDF). Fax the completed form to 650-794-1443.
Sandbags can be obtained from the Fire Department at 555 El Camino Real. For information or availability, please call 650-616-7096.
You may report a streetlight outage by using the Streetlight Reporting Form or by calling our Corporation Yard at 650-616-7160. Please be as specific as possible in the information you provide (e.g., exact location, pole number if available and problem condition-off, on and off, day burner, etc.)
You can use the Reporting Form or call our Corporation Yard at 650-616-7160. For potholes, sidewalks, and road signs, we're interested in precise location and brief description (potholes-size and depth; sidewalks-tripping hazard, size of lift, street tree involvement; road signs-pole down, sign damaged, graffiti, sign turned, etc.).
Please call 650-616-7160 immediately if your sewer is backed up. Do not use the Contact Us forms or San Bruno Responds.
The City's Traffic Engineer is available to consider traffic suggestions by phone at 650-616-7065 or by letter addressed to:City of San BrunoTraffic Engineer567 El Camino RealSan Bruno, CA 94066
Depending upon the nature of your suggestion, it may first need to be reviewed by the Traffic Safety and Parking Committee (TSPC) prior to implementation. This is a standing Committee of citizens appointed by the City Council, that meets on the first Wednesday of every month at 6:30 pm in the Sister City Conference Room at City Hall. Public participation and discussion of traffic issues is encouraged as part of the TSPC meeting. A regular agenda is typically prepared three weeks in advance of the meeting, and only items on the agenda may be considered for action.
For this reason, it is best to forward traffic suggestions directly to the Traffic Engineer as outlined above. Suggestions should include the problem, a recommendation solution and your contact information, including your name, address and telephone number.
Recology San Bruno is the exclusive franchised debris box hauler for San Bruno and you must use them if you are interested in any type of debris box. View the Recology San Bruno website for additional information. If you plan on renting a storage bin, POD, or similar container and temporarily storing it on the street in front of your home while you fill it, you will need an encroachment permit.
Please refer to our Traffic Calming Program Brochure (PDF) for information on how to initiate the process and the principles and guidelines of the Traffic Calming Program. Please email Public Works or call 650-616-7065 if you have additional questions.
Reach Codes are more restrictive Local Amendments to the State’s Energy Code and CalGreen Building to require new residential, multifamily dwellings, and non-residential building developments to: (1) be built to all electric standards (with some exceptions); (2) install solar photovoltaic systems; and (3) install electric vehicle (EV) charging station infrastructure to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG).
A number of Bay Area cities have adopted Reach Codes to reduce GHGs and meet climate protection goals. For new buildings, Reach Codes limit the use of natural gas (which releases GHGs) and require building electrification, solar system installation to support renewable energy, and electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure to meet growing EV charging demand. Natural gas usage in buildings is one of the largest sources of GHG emissions accounting for approximately 40% of all carbon emissions. Switching to a heat pump water heater can reduce household GHG emissions by up to 70% annually, and switching from a gas furnace to a high-efficiency air-source heat pump can reduce household GHG emissions by up to 54% annually.
Power outages can affect both natural gas and all-electric buildings. Typically, electricity is restored more quickly than natural gas after a disaster. PCE is exploring how to minimize risks from power outages and is currently providing residential incentives for solar installation and battery backup systems.
The Reach codes only apply to New Construction. In switching appliances in an existing building or during remodeling, residents are not impacted by Reach Codes.
Projects that have been entitled by the Planning division are exempt from Reach Codes.
The Recreation Division office hours are 8 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday.
San Bruno City Park is located at 251 City Park Way. You may also use the cross streets of Crystal Springs Avenue and Oak Avenue.
Although youth sports' sign-ups are normally held at the Recreation Division, the individual sports organizations actually process the registrations. The Recreation staff never takes registrations for non-departmental youth sports. Youth sports' contact names and phone numbers can be found in the Recreation Services Department Quarterly Activity Guide.
The San Bruno Park Pool is permanently closed due to the upcoming construction of the Recreation and Aquatics Center. To learn more about the project, please visit the Recreation and Aquatics Center (RAC) Information Page.
Alcohol is allowed in the park only in rented picnic areas with an alcohol permit (purchased through the Recreation Division). Alcohol is not allowed at any of the sports fields.
Inflatable jumpers are currently allowed at areas Number 1, Number 3, Number 5, Number 6, Number 7, Number 8, Number 12, and Number 14 in San Bruno City Park, area Number 3 at Commodore Park, and area Number 1 at Grundy Park. Please view the approved jumper company list here. Generators are required for all jumper rentals.
In the aftermath of the devastating 2010 Pacific, Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) gas pipeline explosion, which destroyed 38 homes, damaged over 70 and killed 8 people in San Bruno's Crestmoor neighborhood, the City negotiated a restitution settlement with PG&E in the total amount of $70 million. The City Council determined that the funds should be used for the long-term, enduring benefit of the entire San Bruno community. In 2013, consistent with the terms of the settlement agreement between the City and PG&E, the City established the independent not-for-profit San Bruno Community Foundation (SBCF) to manage the restitution settlement funds and to oversee use of the funds.
In 2015, SBCF sponsored a broad-based Community Listening Campaign to identify the community's priorities for use of the restitution settlement funds. The Community Listening Campaign identified the community's highest priorities to be the replacement and/or addition of new community facilities to support delivery and expansion of community programs and services. The specific community facilities listed as priorities through the Listening Campaign were a new Library, Recreation Center and Swimming Pool to replace existing facilities, and a new Community Center to meet the community's need for meeting and community gathering/event space. Following completion of the Listening Campaign, SBCF identified its intent that $50 million of the restitution settlement funds would be dedicated for design and construction of one or more community facilities.
In 2016, recognizing that $50 million would not be sufficient to construct all of the facilities the community had identified as priority needs, the City conducted a subsequent facilitated community discussion process to identify which among the four community facilities discussed should proceed to design and construction as the community's highest priority for use of the $50 million allocated by SBCF. That process concluded in February 2017 with the San Bruno City Council's approval of the Community Facility Prioritization report which identified replacement of the Recreation Center and Aquatics Center as the community's highest priorities.
The new Recreation Center and Aquatic Center is planned as a single project to be located in San Bruno City Park, 251 City Park Way, in the same general area as the existing San Bruno Swimming Pool and Veterans Memorial Recreation Center. The City of San Bruno worked with Group 4 Architects to develop the strategic conceptual design, including the public outreach process, as well as the schematic design and construction drawings. Construction of the new Recreation and Aquatics Center began in September 2021 and is expected to be completed during Fall 2023.
Construction is currently estimated to complete during Fall 2023. We are just as excited as you for the new beautiful facility! The schedule provides a high level overview of what to expect. As more information becomes available, the schedule and project updates will be updated; visit the Recreation and Aquatics Center Project page to learn more.
A camera has been installed to capture an image of the project activities every 30 minutes. You can watch the new facility be built, and/or go back in time to see how the work progresses. Access the Project Camera to have a look!
The Recreation and Aquatic Center Advisory Committee is comprised of two representatives from each of the City Council, Planning Commission, Park and Recreation Commission and the San Bruno Community Foundation. The Advisory Committee is scheduled to receive an update on the project one month, beginning in October 2021.
Currently the Advisory Committee includes the following members:
The Recreation and Aquatic Center Project Construction Documents went out for bid on January 15, 2021. The following are the bid results, with an award to Lathrop Construction Associates, Inc. approved at the June 8, 2021 City Council meeting.
Visit the San Bruno Recreation and Aquatic Center page for information on land use/zoning, planning approvals, and Environment Impact Report (EIR) documents.
Recreation offices are temporarily located at 618 San Mateo Avenue. You can register in person, Monday through Friday, between the hours of 8 am and 5 pm (excluding holidays). Registration is also Available Online.
To report an issue, please email us. Our Project Manager will be in contact with you directly. For urgent on site matters, contact Griffin Structures Construction Manager: Robert Carnes by calling 805-440-9888.
A streetscape plan is typically prepared for a limited geographic area within a city and is an articulation of the community's vision of the street governed by the neighboring uses, economic activities, modes of transportation and safety. The goal of this Streetscape Plan is to re-enforce San Mateo Avenue as a vital commercial street that serves the needs and priorities of the community.
The outcome of the Streetscape Plan will be a design of an enhanced street with:
The San Bruno General Plan, adopted in 2009, envisions San Mateo Avenue as a symbolic heart of the city. This vision is outlined through various implementation policies in the city's General Plan. Particularly, in the Land Use, Urban Design, Economic Development, and Transportation policies.
In 2013, building upon the implementation policies of the General Plan, the City adopted the Transit Corridors Plan (TCP) which articulates the community's vision for revitalized commercial corridors in proximity to the San Bruno Avenue Caltrain Station. The TCP also identifies San Mateo Avenue Streetscape improvements as a short-term implementation project to enhance the Central Business District.
While San Mateo Avenue has experienced an upswing in activity in recent years with new cafes and increased restaurant patronage, it remains an underutilized focal point within the city. Through this Streetscape Plan, the City envisions to re-enforce San Mateo Avenue as a vital downtown commercial street that serves the needs and priorities of the community.
On January 8, 2019, the City Council approved to execute the development of the City's San Mateo Avenue Streetscape Plan. Please visit the City Council Meetings page to review the presentation and the staff report.
The overall project area will encompass south San Mateo Avenue, which is comprised of the public right-of-way on San Mateo Avenue between San Bruno Avenue at the Caltrain Station to the north and the El Camino Real intersection to the south.
To gather maximum community input and feedback, the City with the help of the consultant team will host multiple community meetings such as a workshop, a pop-up event, stakeholder meetings, traditional community meetings, Planning Commission, and City Council meetings. The details of all the meetings will be updated on the City's website. Anyone who is interested in the San Mateo Avenue Streetscape Plan is welcome to attend these meetings.
Want to receive future meeting updates? Please complete our Interest List Form to receive email notifications. Email notifications will be sent 10 days prior to the meeting date.
The City currently bills customers via a combined bi-monthly utility bill that includes water and sewer service charges and solid waste charges. This results in a single large bill that customers pay once every two months. The typical single family residential monthly sewer charges are $94.12. Billing through the County property tax roll is anticipated to provide many benefits to both ratepayers and the sewer enterprise fund, including:
In June 2023, the City Council will review and potentially take action on an ordinance that would amend the City Municipal Code to allow the City Council to take future action in 2024 to collect sewer service charges for all parcels in San Bruno on the County property tax bills. The one-year transition period provides time for owners to plan accordingly to transition from bimonthly to biannual payments.
In Spring 2024, the City could initiate the formal process under State law to make this change in who bills for these charges, effective July 1, 2024.
Most agencies in San Mateo County collect sewer service charges on the tax roll. The only agencies that do not are Burlingame, Brisbane, and Foster City. The City of Millbrae is currently in the process of transitioning sewer service charges to the San Mateo County property tax roll starting July 1, 2023.
If approved by the City Council in Spring 2024, all San Bruno sewer service customers would be subject to this change billing for services effective July 1, 2024.
Charges collected through the tax roll are the responsibility of the parcel owner, who pays the entire property tax bill. Owners may adjust their mortgage impound account set-asides to include these charges.
If this change is approved by the City Council, tenants of parcels that will have charges collected through the tax roll will not see a sewer service charge on their City of San Bruno utility bill after the transition takes place in July 1, 2024.
Sewer service charges collected through the tax roll will appear on the parcel owner’s tax bill the same way they do for property taxes. Charges are paid in the same manner and at the same time as property taxes. This means property owners will be responsible for paying charges by the due dates listed on their property tax bill.
Sewer service charges collected through the tax roll will be subject to any deadlines or penalties set by the San Mateo County Tax Collector’s Office.
No. Current rates will not increase as a result of collecting charges through the tax roll. The City will continue to follow the same public notification process for adopting rates increases.
Sewer services charges are not tax deductible.
Yes, the City will continue to bill customers for water services.
Sewer service charges collected through the tax roll will not impact the amount of property taxes, but will be added as a separate line item to the total tax bill. As such, the parcel owner will see an increase in the overall tax bill received, as it includes other fixed charges that billed in addition to property taxes.
Yes, City of San Bruno customers may still apply for the discounted sewer rates program established by the City Council that provides a 25% discount in rates for households with certain income limitations.
A small cell wireless facility typically consists of a small antenna placed on utility poles or street lights along with small pole-mounted radios and other accessory equipment. Small cells are typically installed on utility poles or street lights. The antennas and equipment can be mounted on top or on the side of the pole. In some cases equipment boxes are installed on the ground or underground.
Small cell facilities will help wireless service providers in meeting the continuously increasing demand for wireless telephone and data services. The increased use of smart phones, tablets, health monitors and other wireless devices in every-day life relies on a robust wireless network. A small cell network is designed to add capacity and improve coverage in San Bruno neighborhoods. These small wireless facilities are placed with the intent to fill in areas that do not have sufficient capacity. Increased capacity will help improve voice quality, reliability and data speeds for San Bruno residents, businesses, first responders and visitors using the wireless networks.
A typical small cell within the right-of-way is 50 feet or less in height, consists of one or more antennas and one or more equipment boxes. The antennas will be mounted either at the top of the pole or on the side. The equipment boxes will be attached to the pole, installed on the ground, or in the case of new streetlight installations, potentially in the base of the pole itself. While every system varies, the equipment boxes typically include a disconnect switch, and computers to control the antennas. Some wireless facilities may also feature an equipment box, on the same pole or in a box near the pole, that contains batteries used to provide temporary emergency power to the facility in case of a power outage.
Public right-of-way refers to a strip of land, which is used as a roadbed, either for a street, railway or other accessway. The land is set aside as an easement or in fee, either by agreement or condemnation. The public right of way generally consists of the roadway, sidewalks and a strip of land behind the sidewalk (which varies by neighborhood).
A number of factors dictate the range of small cells, including objects that can potentially block the signals such as trees or buildings. On average, these systems have an approximate range of 150 to 500 feet due to their low mounting height and low power output (either 66, 100, or 174 watts). For comparison purposes, a typical "macro" facility, with higher power usage (e.g. 10,000+ watts), and a higher mounting location, can have a range of a mile or two.
No. Under State and Federal law, telecommunications carriers have a right to install wireless facilities in the public right-of-way. The City, however, can regulate certain aspects of the design, location, and placement of those facilities.
After the Planning Commission approved the project, a neighbor appealed the decision to the City Council. The City Council upheld the appeal, finding that the facility was inconsistent with the height of other infrastructure in the neighborhood. Verizon then sued the City in federal court, seeking to invalidate the City’s current ordinance as too restrictive, and asking the court to overturn the City Council’s decision. The case is currently pending.
CBR Group on behalf of Verizon Wireless is the only company with active applications for new small wireless facilities in residential zones throughout the City. Other wireless companies have inquired about residential installations but to date no application has been received. The Verizon Wireless applications consist of adding an antenna and associated equipment onto existing facilities located within the public right-of-way. The table below includes a current list of the proposed small wireless facilities in the City. The City has not taken any official action on these applications except the application at 123 Elm Avenue which was denied by the City Council.
The City Council has joined a national coalition of more than 50 cities and local agencies in fifteen states to file suit in federal court opposing a new FCC order that would further reduce local control over small cell facilities. Other California cities that have joined are Burlingame, Fairfax, Monterey, San Jose, and the Marin Telecommunications Agency, along with nine cities in Southern California, including the City of Los Angeles. The cities seek to overturn the FCC order, which would otherwise go into effect in January 2019, and which would otherwise result in many small cell applications being approved with little or no local oversight.
5G is the fifth generation of mobile communication networks. Most consumers now use 3G or 4G/LTE networks, which were introduced to the public in 2001 and 2009, respectively. AT&T shuttered its 2G system in early 2017. Verizon, T-Mobile, and Sprint have said they’ll continue to operate their 2G networks through 2019, 2020, and 2021, respectively. It is anticipated that 5G systems will use existing cell towers and small cells.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC), in consultation with numerous other federal agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, has developed safety standards. The FCC explains that its standards incorporate prudent margins of safety. It explains further that radio frequency emissions from antennas used for cellular and PCS transmissions result in exposure levels on the ground that are typically thousands of times below safety limits. The FCC provides information about the safety of RF emissions from wireless telecommunications facilities on its website. See this FAQ for additional information and resources.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) provides information on its safety standards and determinations on its website.
Questions regarding potential Radiofrequency (RF) hazards from FCC-regulated transmitters can be directed to the Federal Communications Commission, Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau:
455 12th Street SWWashington DC, 20554Phone: 888-225-5322 (1-888-CALL-FCC)Email RF Safety
The Telecommunications Act of 1996 contains provisions relating to federal jurisdiction over the regulation of human exposure to RF emissions from certain transmitting devices. In particular, Section 704 of the Act states that “No state or local government or instrumentality thereof may regulate the placement, construction, and modification of personal wireless service facilities on the basis of environmental effects of radiofrequency emissions to the extent that such facilities comply with the Commission’s regulations concerning such emission.” (47 U.S.C. §332(c)(7)(B)(iv).) Further information on FCC policy with respect to facilities siting is available from the FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau and in the Local Government Official’s Guide to Transmitting Antenna RF Emission Safety (PDF).
Yes. Currently, the City’s existing Wireless Telecommunications Facilities Ordinance requires a Use Permit (UP) for the installation of wireless facilities both on private property or within the public right-of-way. A license agreement - and annual fee - is required for installations on City-owned poles. No license agreements have been entered into to date.
Installation of small cell facilities on existing street light poles may be deemed categorically exempt from the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) pursuant to, but not limited to, Sections 15302 and 15303 of the Guidelines for CEQA.
Streetlight poles are owned and maintained by the City of San Bruno. The majority of wooden utility poles are maintained and controlled by members of the Northern California Joint Pole Association (NCJPA) such as PG&E. Utility poles may have several utilities on any given pole, including electric, telephone, and cable providers.
Wireless carriers have proposed and installed similar networks in cities throughout the Bay Area and the United States.
The FCC has issued a declaratory order stating that a moratorium amounts to an “effective prohibition” of service in violation of Federal law. As such, the adoption of any moratorium is legally risky.
We are not aware of any cities, including those mentioned, with an outright prohibition on installations in residential zones. In fact, to do so would violate the Federal Telecommunications Act of 1996. Some cities that have attempted to impose such bans, or who have denied small cell facilities in residential areas (such as the City of San Bruno recently did at 123 Elm), have been sued in federal court by the carriers.
If a proposed FCC order goes into effect as scheduled in January 2019, it would prohibit cities from requiring carriers to prove that there is a "significant gap" in coverage and that they are using the "least intrusive alternative" to fill that gap. Instead, the FCC order establishes a new standard to govern local regulation. Pursuant to this new standard, cities cannot "materially inhibit" a carrier from competing "in a fair and balanced legal and regulatory environment," or from "densifying a wireless network, introducing new services, or otherwise improving service capabilities."
Along with more than 50 other cities nationwide, the City issued the FCC to block the implementation of the proposed order. See this FAQ.
The City’s regulations may include provisions deeming installations in residential zoning districts, or near schools and parks as the City’s least preferred locations. This does not mean that they will never be installed at these locations, but the intent is to encourage carriers to seek out locations in other areas of the City. If ground-mounted equipment is proposed for installation on school property or in City parks, the agencies can control the placement of the wireless facility and require license agreements.
Improvements will vary depending on location and carrier. If you are interested in additional information please contact your service provider.
Current technological limitations make it difficult to place two small cell antennas on a single pole. It is unlikely at this time that, for example, both Verizon and AT&T would share a pole. Note, however, State and Federal law prohibits the City from denying a proposed installation on a pole with an existing wireless facility, if it complies with certain requirements including size limitations.
Questions regarding potential RF emissions from FCC-regulated transmitters can be directed to the Federal Communications Commission, Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau445 12th Street, SW Washington, D.C. 20554; Phone: 888-225-5322 (1-888-CALL-FCC);FCC by Email
If you have concerns in the future that the facility is not in compliance with the FCC Guidelines, you should report your concerns to the FCC's Enforcement Bureau:445 12th Street, SW,3rd floorWashington, DC 20554Phone: 202-418-7450.
For additional information regarding RF emissions safety and compliance, please see the following resources from various federal, state and independent sources. Please note that these links are provided for information purposes only and the views expressed in them should be attributed to the original source.
As we all continue to address more extreme, unpredictable climates and rainy seasons, San Bruno is committed to ensuring we are doing our part to maintain clean water in our region while minimizing flooding property damage to our local residents and businesses.
A properly maintained and functioning storm drain system is necessary to meeting these needs, yet a recent stormwater infrastructure analysis show the City's storm drain system is inadequate. During the rainy season, we are at risk of hillside erosion and overflow of our storm drain system citywide - which can pollute Bay waters - and puts our homes and businesses at risk of flooding that damages property and obstructs residents, police and emergency response.
Properly maintained stormwater infrastructure protects local properties from expensive flooding and water damage while also protecting the San Bruno Channel, the San Francisco Bay, and local water supplies from contamination. To prevent obstruction of local emergency response, it is critical that long-term repairs to our stormwater system continue to be made on a timely basis.
Much of San Bruno's aging stormwater system has been in use since the early 1900s. Upgrading and properly maintaining our local system will prevent public safety hazards caused by system failure, landslides, sinkholes and flooding while protecting local waterways and property.
We have received over 700 responses to our recent invitation to hear community input about our local stormwater issues. Below are the top priorities we have heard to date:
The proposed fee methodology calculation that was included in the Storm Drainage and Flood Protection Fee report can be viewed by entering your 9-digit Assessor Parcel Number (APN) without spaces or dashes on our Stormwater Fees page.
If you don't know your APN, you can easily obtain it through the County of San Mateo Planning and Building Map Viewer.
Unfortunately, the City is able to make only emergency repairs without adequate funding to address critical upgrades to the aging stormwater system. We also know now is the time to live within our means. To that end, the City Council has canceled a planned water and sewer rate increase and unanimously voted to propose an updated stormwater fee structure uniquely calculated so that each property pays its share based on the impact each property has on the stormwater system to address stormwater system needs.
Each property owner received a notification of their estimated fee under the proposed Storm Drain and Flood Protection Fee to address health and safety upgrades and better protect local waterways and property.
This election is not a secret ballot election. However, that is not due to a policy choice made by the City, but due to a requirement of California law.
Under California law, when a city conducts a property-owner mail ballot election for this sort of property-related fee, the ballot in the election is required to include:
Some residents have asked why their name and property address is on the ballot. The current stormwater fee has not been adjusted for the past 27 years, state laws regarding this sort of election have changed in the last decade, and many of our residents are used to participating in elections where every registered voter can cast a ballot. However, as noted above, the City cannot conduct a property-owner mail ballot election as a secret ballot election.
State law requires that ballots must remain sealed until the commencement of tabulation. (Government Code Section 53755.5(b)(2)). State law also requires that:
During and after the tabulation, the ballots and, if applicable, the information used to determine the weight of each ballot, shall be treated as public records, as defined in [the California Public Records Act], subject to public disclosure and made available for inspection by any interested person. (Government Code Section 53755.5(b)(4)).
While property-owner mail ballot election for property-related fees are less common than registered voter elections, the California Supreme Court has specifically held that the California Constitution does not require secret ballots for this sort of property-owner mail ballot election. The City was aware of the election procedure required by State law, and flagged for property-owners the unusual aspect of this type of election in an effort to be transparent. The City printed on every ballot:
To ensure the privacy of your ballot prior to tabulation, please return it in the Ballot Return Envelope that was included with this ballot. This ballot becomes a public record once it is opened during tabulation.
It's worth noting that in 2014, the state adopted additional transparency practices for these types of elections due to some agencies abusing the process by trying to keep property owner ballot results secret. The result was amendments to the government code to require that these ballots be public records.
A permit is needed:
To report a Tree related issue, please contact the Parks Division at 650-616-7187.
City trees, including street trees, are pruned every four years by the City. Pruning areas have been established so that approximately one-quarter of the trees are pruned each winter. If you are concerned about the health of your tree, please fill out the online request form and the City arborist will come out and take a look at it.
A TV network doesn't necessarily own all the rights to all the programs they transmit. A network may have the right to transmit a movie, but only to TV sets, and not on WatchTVEverywhere. It all depends on the network.
Each TV network makes their own decision about what to offer on WatchTVEverywhere. For example, the live feed of CNN is available, but the live feed of TBS is not. Instead, TBS offers full episodes of their popular programs.
WatchTVEverywhere is a service that allows cable TV subscribers to view TV programs on devices other than a TV set. This can include a PC, a laptop, tablet or smartphone.
You can watch any WatchTVEverywhere program as long as it's on a network you subscribe to in your cable TV package. For example, you must subscribe to HBO through your cable company in order to watch HBO's WatchTVEverywhere programs.
To use WatchTVEverywhere, you must first complete a one-time registration. To get started:
Yes! We're working with many different programming providers to expand the number of networks, and the number of shows available on WatchTVEverywhere. Registered users are presented with the complete list of all the networks available to them. When new networks are added, you will see them in your menu of available programs when you log in.
Nearly all WTVE programs are available on all devices (PC, laptop, tablet, smartphone). Some networks may not have made all their programs available on all devices.
There's no limit to the number of devices you can use, however TV networks may limit the number you can use at the same time. Remember, it's important to keep your username and password confidential. Use of your credentials by others will result in the loss of your WTVE privileges.
It might. Check your data plan before you use WatchTVEveryhwere on a smart phone or wireless network. WTVE programs transmit a lot of data. This can be expensive if you have a limited data plan. We have no way to know when you have exceeded your data plan's limits. You are responsible for all charges billed to you by your mobile carrier.
WTVE works anywhere you can receive an Internet signal: in your house, at work, at the mall, at a hotel, the airport, a vacation home- anywhere! Wired connections and in-home WiFi will provide the best overall quality. The quality of WatchTVEverywhere service while traveling (airports, stores, etc) will vary with the signal strength and bandwidth of the Internet connection you use. Be extra careful when traveling, especially outside the U.S. Data roaming charges may apply, and they can be very expensive.
Nothing! At this time, there's no extra cost for WatchTVEverywhere, so feel free to explore. There is nothing on the site that will result in an extra cost to you (except overage charges from your cellular carrier, if applicable). As long as you can receive the TV Network in your "regular" cable channel lineup, you may view that network's TV Everywhere content, if available.
Chloraminated water is safe for people and animals to drink, and for all other general uses. However, as with chlorine, chloramine needs to be removed for fish and amphibian use, and for people or businesses requiring highly treated water. Precautions are taken to remove or neutralize chloramine in the kidney dialysis process, in the preparation of water for fish tanks and ponds, and in businesses using water in treatment processes and beverage manufacturing.
Unlike chlorine, chloramine cannot be removed from water by boiling, or by letting an open container of water stand to dissipate chlorine gas. It can only be neutralized, or removed with specific treatment methods.
Yes. Chloraminated water is completely safe to use on cuts and wounds.
Rubber parts on some household plumbing and water heaters may degrade faster than with other disinfection methods. When replacing rubber plumbing parts, ask for chloramine-resistant parts, which are readily available.