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Report Application & Review Process

All Geologic and/or Geotechnical (Soils) Reports must be peer reviewed and accepted by registered County staff prior to approval of proposed development application(s). Separate or combined reports may be submitted but are required to be signed and stamped by the appropriately registered professionals. A fee for the report review is collected at the time of submittal of the Report(s). This fee may be charged in conjunction with a Building Permit application, or as part of a Discretionary Permit application.

The technical peer review focuses on compliance with the Guidelines for Engineering Geologic Reports and/or Guidelines for Geotechnical (Soils) Investigation Reports, as well as the completeness of the reports relative to applicable code requirements, geologic and engineering practice, and an overall review of the findings and conclusions.

The Report(s) must be based upon the same set of California Building Codes that the plans are designed to and must address the requirements of the building code. If the report is found to have deficiencies, a letter will be mailed to the report preparer as well as to the applicant describing the deficiencies. 

When the Report is accepted, the owner will be notified of its acceptance and any related requirements such as the need for the Geologist and/or Geotechnical (Soils) Engineer to review the final plans for conformance with report recommendations.  The Geologist and/or Soils Engineer will need to prepare form PLG300.

After issuance of the building permit, the County requires the Geologist and Soils Engineer, as applicable, to be involved during construction. Several letters or reports are typically required to be submitted to the County at various times during construction. Including, but not limited to, the following as typical examples:

  • When a project has a designated Geologic Building Envelope, the Geologist must certify that the foundation excavation is within the Envelope prior to pouring concrete.
  • When a project has engineered fills and / or grading, a letter from your Soils Engineer must be submitted to the appropriate Planning Department staff prior to foundations excavation. This letter must state that the grading has been completed in conformance with the recommendations of the Soils Report. Compaction reports or a summary thereof must be submitted with the letter.
  • Prior to placing concrete for foundations, a letter from the Soils Engineer must be submitted to the building inspector and to the appropriate Planning Department staff stating that the Soils Engineer has observed the foundation excavation and that it meets the recommendations of the Soils Report.
  • At the completion of construction, a final letter(s) (form PLG305) from the Geologist and Soils Engineer, as applicable, is required to be submitted to the appropriate Planning Division staff that summarizes the observations and the tests the registered professional has made during construction.

Please note - if the final letter(s) (PLG305) identifies any items of work remaining to be completed or that any portions of the project were not observed, you may be required to complete the remaining items of work, may be required to perform destructive testing, or may be required to record a Notice on your title describing the incomplete work in order for your permit to obtain a final inspection.

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