A Cooperative Planning Effort

The Butte Regional Conservation Plan (BRCP) is being coordinated by the Butte County Association of Governments (BCAG) on behalf of:
Butte County  •  City of Chico
City of Oroville  •  City of Gridley
City of Biggs  •  Caltrans District 3
Western Canal Water District  •  Richvale Irrigation District 
Biggs West-Gridley Water District  •  Butte Water District
The BRCP is both a federal Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) and a state Natural Community Conservation Plan (NCCP). It provides streamlined state and federal endangered species act and wetlands permitting for transportation projects, land development and other covered activities over the 50 year term of the permits. It also provides comprehensive species, wetlands and ecosystem conservation and contributes to the recovery of endangered species within the Plan Area.

For further information, see our informational brochures below:

BRCP 8-page informational brochure highlighting the main components of the Plan.

BRCP 4-page informational brochure highlighting the benefits of the BRCP for the participating cities and county.

The current process of obtaining Endangered Species Act permits and implementing habitat mitigation is inefficient, resulting in uncertainty and unnecessary delays for project proponents at times resulting in ineffective habitat mitigation that provide insufficient long-term protection for the species they're trying to protect.

The Butte Regional Conservation Plan replaces the existing problematic permitting process with a smarter, simper process. It results in a coordinated regional approach to conservation and regulation that benefits species and habitat conservation, wildlife agencies and project proponents alike.

The BRCP is a win-win that helps ensure that growth and development of the cities and the County go forward in a timely and efficient manner while ensuring the conservation of species and habitats is accomplished in a more biologically sound fashion. Development activities, including housing, industrial parks, shopping centers, government buildings, schools, and infrastructure such as roads and bike paths contribute to our community and our economy, but they also have the potential to negatively affect state and federally protected species and their habitats, requiring permits from state and federal agencies.

The BRCP allows project proponents to follow straightforward guidelines in the BRCP, pay a fee, receive approval and permits for endangered species impacts at the local level, and proceed with their projects without negotiating with state and federal agencies in Sacramento.

The BRCP replaces the existing "project-by-project" environmental permitting process for federal and state species in Butte County, with a more certain, streamlined, and consistent process. This allows for projects to go forward to construction with local approvals and little or no involvement of federal and state agencies in Sacramento.

At the same time, the BRCP ensures all impacts on protected species are mitigated as required by state and federal laws, and also contributes to the recovery of species and the conservation of the ecosystems on which they depend through a well-planned and managed system of conservation lands established primarily through conservation easements over 50-years. Additional benefits of the BRCP are the preservation of open space and ongoing farming and ranch economies in the Plan Area that will maintain much of the rural character and natural beauty of our landscape.

Once adopted, the BRCP will primarily apply to two main groups: public and private project proponents who are implementing projects that affect lands containing habitat value, and land owners who voluntarily wish to sell a conservation easement on their land, or sell their land in fee title for conservation purposes.

The BRCP does not bring forth a new zoning requirement that will affect property owners, nor does it change protection requirements for species or habitat in the Plan Area.

For further information, see the BRCP Documents section above, and also our informational brochures below.

BRCP 8-page informational brochure highlighting the main components of the Plan.

BRCP 4-page informational brochure highlighting the benefits of the BRCP for the participating cities and county.

More Information
What's New
Development of the BRCP resumed in August 2018 after being on hold since March 2017 due to a lack of funding. BCAG was awarded a USFWS Section 6 Planning Assistance grant in April 2018 that will allow for the development of the final BRCP and EIS/EIR.  Click here for grant award announcements.
BCAG staff will be working with the consultant team at ICF to continue where they left off in March 2017 - finalizing revisions to the BRCP and EIS/EIR based on comments received during the 204-day public review period that stretched from November 2015 to June 2016. This work will be coordinated with the BRCP "applicants" (the participating cities, county, Caltrans, and water districts), state and federal wildlife agencies, and key stakeholder groups. Additionally, work is continuing on development of final permitting documents with the US Army Corp of Engineers to streamline the Section 404 permitting process. Stay tuned for more information.
More information on the BRCP:
BRCP 8-page informational brochure highlighting the main components of the Plan.
BRCP 4-page informational brochure highlighting the benefits of the BRCP for the participating cities and county.

White Paper on Economic Effects of Regional Habitat Conservation Plans. Prepared by Economic & Planning Systems, Inc for California Habitat Conservation Planning Coalition. This paper evaluates the hypothesis that regional HCPs confer substantial economic benefits to the private sector.
Executive Summary

Transportation and Habitat Conservation Plans Document - Improving Planning and Project Delivery While Preserving Endangered Species. Prepared by the University of California Transportation Center, results show that time and cost savings are major benefits to transportation projects permitted under regional HCPs.

Stakeholder Committee Meetings, Click to view
Public Workshops
A third round of public workshops were held on the dates below to receive input and provide interested members of the public with general information on the formal public draft BRCP, EIS/EIR and Regional General Permit/ILF Prospectus. To view the PowerPoint presentation provided by the project team at the workshops, click here.

Monday, January 25th, 2016
6:00 - 8:00pm
Chico Masonic Center
1110 W. East Ave, Chico

Tuesday, January 26th, 2016
2:00 - 4:00pm
Southside Oroville Community Center
2959 Lower Wyandotte Rd, Oroville

Tuesday, January 26th, 2016
6:00 - 8:00pm
Gridley City Council Chambers
685 Kentucky St, Gridley

Butte Regional Conservation Plan - Balancing Growth and Conservation

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