City of Fort Bragg – Senior Planner



Class specifications are intended to present a descriptive list of the range of duties performed by employees in this classification. Specifications are not to reflect all duties performed within the job.

Under direction of the Public Works Director and/or Assistant Director – Engineering, performs complex and specialized planning work in the areas of current and long range planning, and economic development.

Long Range Planning
• Conducts and prepares studies and recommendations for the Planning Commission, City Council, and other public committees;
• Assists with the development of guidelines, policies, ordinances and procedures pertaining to land use planning and development;
• Prepares amendments to Local Coastal Program and General Plan;
• Performs a wide variety of professional and technical work in collecting, analyzing and presenting information relative to City planning and community development functions and activities; and
• Completes special projects as needed.

Current Planning
• Provides information regarding land use matters to the public;
• Provides liaison with consultants, developers and staff of other agencies on current planning activities;
• Completes development review for current planning projects, including but not limited to: coastal development permits, use permits, subdivisions, design review, CEQA and NEPA review, etc; and
• Prepares staff reports for the Planning Commission and City Council.

Economic Development

• Coordinate and support grant applications and reporting;
• Support ongoing economic development programs and policies; and
• Make recommendations to City Administration and City Council on economic development efforts in Fort Bragg.

Incumbent in this class works at an advanced journey-level on both simple and complex/specialized assignments such as large physical projects with significant environmental impacts and mitigation measures, and development of new or complex general plan policies. Incumbent works independently with minimum supervision. Incumbent may train staff as assigned.

The incumbent of this position spends more than 50 percent of his/her time as a mid-manager performing office work directly related to management policies or general business operations, monitoring department work for legal and regulatory compliance, in addition to supervising at least two full-time equivalent staff. The incumbent customarily and regularly exercises discretion and independent judgment. This position is, therefore, “exempt” under the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Supervision received is characterized by general administrative support and control rather than direct control over methods within the infrastructure of defined departmental objectives. Completed assignments may be reviewed upon completion by the Assistant Director – Engineering, Public Works Director, City Manager and/or City Attorney. This position has supervisory responsibilities over all non-supervisory Community Development staff. Incumbent may train or oversee project work completed by other City staff.

This is the most senior Planner position. Distinguishing characteristics over other Planner positions within Public Works/Community Development: a highly developed ability to work independently and exercise sound judgment in the pursuit of the general policies, plans and objectives prescribed for the department. Ability to independently perform planning work and, based upon professional analysis, recommend and implement planning policy.


Current Planning
• Act as project manager for complex and larger entitlement projects and applications that require specialized knowledge and/or experience in interpretation of land use and environmental policies and regulations. Assign projects to other planners and administrative staff in the department and supervise work.
• Lead Planning Commission meetings and hearings and review staff reports from other planners and administrative staff in the department.
• Perform research and compile data for complex or controversial projects, to implement a comprehensive plan, for preparation of staff reports, for planning studies, etc.
• Interpret land use and environmental policies and regulations to the general public, applicants, consultants, and representatives of public agencies.
• Review development applications for completeness and accuracy.
• Meet with applicants to negotiate proposed permit conditions.
• Review comments from the public and City departmental staff; prepare project reports with analysis and comments for public distribution, state environmental impacts and recommendations for mitigation measures and disposition of the projects. Review data and information received from other agencies and incorporate into report recommendations and/or environmental documents.
• Process use permits, lot line adjustments, coastal development permits, design review permits, annexations and variances.
• Review preliminary and final subdivision plots for compliance with planning laws, codes, and regulations.
• Prepare and present staff reports and environmental documents to decision-makers at public hearings; assist other staff in making formal presentations on land use and environmental policies and regulations at public meetings.
• Analyze supportive materials necessary for initial environmental assessments of projects and analyze the projects in conjunction with environmental documents to determine consistency with adopted State, and City goals, policies, plans and ordinances/resolutions. Prepare Negative Declarations and other environmental documents.
• Review building permits and requests for business licenses for compliance with zoning codes and ordinances.
• Monitor construction sites and ensures compliance with mitigation measures.

Long Range Planning
• Research land use, transportation requirements, community design, resource constraints, environmental thresholds, and other development or environmental issues; analyze data to consider impacts of development policies, compute descriptive statistics from data to incorporate in report; interpret adopted State and City policies, guidelines, ordinances/resolutions, and zoning regulations for the public.
• Develop and assist with Local Coastal Program (LCP) amendments and interface as needed with California Coastal Commission staff on the City’s LCP.
• Review and make recommendations regarding General Plan amendments, zoning changes and environmental impact reports. Prepare drafts of new or revised planning and zoning ordinances.
• Assist in developing and processing amendments to City zoning and subdivision ordinances.
• Work with advisory committees and/or participate in public workshops to obtain public input on the development/revision of policies and programs.
• Write land use and environmental policies and regulations for inclusion in city ordinances, resolutions, general plan, or environmental guidelines.
• Respond to controversial issues regarding land use and environmental policies and regulations.
• Review legislation, journals, and periodicals to keep updated on new information.
• Prepare maps, charts, and other graphic information.
• Prepare and issue notices of action and permit documents.
• Perform redevelopment, advanced planning and other duties as assigned.

• Aid in the selection and management of consultants by writing requests for proposals, developing contracts, monitoring performance and billings, and reviewing technical analyses and documents.
• Staff community meetings, including meeting facilitation, agenda setting, and meeting minutes as needed.
• Attend meetings and provide management and peers with status reports on assigned projects.

Possession of a valid Class C or higher California driver’s license.

Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university, including 15 semester units or 22 quarter units of course work in urban/rural and regional planning, environmental studies, or life, physical, or social sciences; and four years journey level professional experience in urban/rural and regional planning, planning policy development, or environmental review and analysis.

Master’s degree in urban/rural or regional planning, environmental studies, landscape architect, architecture; and minimum of three years professional experience in urban/rural and regional planning, planning policy development, or environmental review and analysis. Work experience with a coastal city government is highly desirable.

To apply and full details, including filing deadline, please go to: