20.32 – AC (CZ) DISTRICT

20.32.010            PURPOSES.

The purpose of this Chapter is to provide a district to preserve and enhance the use of relatively small pockets of prime agricultural soil and productive grazing lands in the County of Monterey while also providing the opportunity to establish support facilities for grazing uses and clustered residential uses.

20.32.020            APPLICABILITY.

The regulations in this Chapter shall apply in all "AC" districts subject to Chapter 20.62 (Height and Setback Exceptions) Section 20.66.030  (Agricultural Uses) and Chapter 20.70 (Coastal Development Permits) of this Title.

20.32.030            NONEXEMPT DEVELOPMENT.

The following list shall require a coastal development permit regardless of which category of allowed uses it falls into:

A.            Development which will cause a Significant Environmental Impact;

B.            Development within the Critical Viewshed as defined by Section 20.145.020.V (Big Sur);

C.            Development on slopes of 30% or greater (25% in North County) except as provided for in Section 20.64.230 (C) (2) and (3);

D.            Ridgeline Development;

E.            Development within 100 feet of mapped or field identified environmentally sensitive habitats;

F.            Development with positive archaeological reports;

G.        Land divisions;

H.            Development of new or expanded agricultural operations if 50% or more of the parcel has a slope of 10% or greater; or where the operation is to occur on soils with a high or very high erosion hazard potential, according to the Soil Conservation Service Soil Survey Manual.


A.        Except for those uses requiring a Coastal Development Permit, all soil dependent agricultural uses including crop and tree farming, dry land farming, livestock farming, greenhouses and vineyards;

B.         Single family dwellings for an owner, operator or employees employed on-site;

C.        All necessary, appurtenant accessory structures such as barns, stables, storage structures and farm shops;

D.            Guesthouses meeting the development standards of Section 20.64.020;

E.            Cultivation, cutting or removal of Christmas trees;

F.            Temporary residences, pursuant to Section 20.64.070, used as  living quarters during the construction of the first dwelling on a lot;

G.        Small family day care homes conducted within an existing structure;

H.        Water system facilities including wells and storage tanks serving 14 or fewer service connections, pursuant to Title 15.04, Monterey County Code and replacement of water tanks and wells where no increase in service connections is created.  Service connections do not include livestock watering facilities;

I.            Rooming and boarding of not more than 2 persons;

J.          The keeping of pets;

K.            Reserved;

L.         Home occupations, pursuant to Section 20.64.090;

M.        Stands for the sale of agricultural products grown on the premises having no permanent electricity, plumbing or paving;

N.        Hunting and fishing.

O.        Stands for the sale of agricultural products grown on the premises having permanent electricity, plumbing or paving where adequate restroom facilities exist on premises, subject to the approval of the Director of Environmental Health;

P.         Senior citizen units meeting the development standards of Section 20.64.010;

Q.        Farm employee housing facility for not more than five families or twelve single persons;

R.            Reduction in setback requirements for main structures, provided the proposed reduction is 10% of less of the required setback;

S.            Reduction in setback requirements for accessory structures, provided the proposed reduction is 80% or less of the required setback.

T.            Additions to existing approved wireless communications facilities pursuant to Section 20.64.310.


A.            Conversion of uncultivated land to cultivated agricultural use on land with 15% - 25% slopes ( North County Area Plan only);

B.         Public utilities and infrastructure;

C.            Commercial and noncommercial wind energy conversion systems;

D.            Conditional Certificates of Compliance;

E.         Genetic Engineering Experiments, pursuant to Chapter 20.64.140;

F.            Ridgeline development;

G.            Agricultural support facilities (ZA);

H.        Large family day care homes accessory to the agricultural uses on site (ZA);

I.            Keeping and raising of mink (ZA);

J.          Any building, structure, or enclosure for the purpose of maintaining a zoo or zoological garden for the purpose of raising, maintaining or exhibiting any wild animal or animals;

K.            Reserved;

L.            Assemblages of people, such as carnivals, festivals, races and circuses not exceeding 10 days and not involving construction of permanent facilities (ZA);

M.            Agricultural processing plants (ZA);

N.            Commercial hog and turkey raising on a minimum of 10 acres (ZA);

O.            Livestock feed yards on a minimum of 20 acres (ZA);

P.         Animal sales yards on a minimum of 10 acres (ZA);

Q.        Dairies on a minimum of 40 acres (ZA);

R.            Mushroom farms (North County Only);

S.         Poultry farms on a minimum of 5 acres (ZA);

T.         Water system facilities including wells and storage tanks serving 15 or more service connections;

U.        Legal nonconforming use of a portion of a structure extended throughout the structure (ZA);

V.        Legal nonconforming use changed to a use of a similar or more restricted nature; 

W.            Reserved;

X.        Hunting and fishing facilities (ZA); 

Y.        Public or private riding or hiking clubs with accessory structures and trails developed for such uses (ZA);

Z.            Commercial kennel;

AA.      Farm worker housing;

BB.      Farm employee housing facilities for more than five families or more than twelve single persons;

CC.      Cottage industries, pursuant to Section 20.64.095 (ZA);

DD.      Non-soil dependent nurseries and greenhouses;

EE.       Other agricultural uses of a similar character, density and intensity to those uses listed in this Section determined by the Planning Commission to be consistent and compatible with the intent of this Chapter and the applicable land use plan;

FF.       Subdivisions;

GG.      Lot Line Adjustments.

HH.       Wireless communications facilities pursuant to Section 20.64.310.


20.32.060            SITE DEVELOPMENT STANDARDS.

A.            Minimum Building Site

The minimum building site shall be 40 acres unless otherwise approved as part of a clustered residential development.

B.            Development Density, Maximum

The maximum gross development density shall not exceed two single family dwellings or equivalent per parcel of 40 or more acres pursuant to Section 20.144.080.D.11 of this Title.

C.            Structure Height and Setback Regulations

The following structure height and setback regulations apply unless superseded by a structure height limit noted on the zoning map (e.g. "AC/40 (24)" would limit structure height to 24 feet), setback requirements when combined with a "B" district, setbacks shown on a recorded final or parcel map, or setback lines on a Sectional District Map.

1.            Main Structures

a.            Minimum Setbacks

Front:     30 feet

Side:       20 feet

Rear:       20 feet

Maximum Height:  35 feet

2.            Accessory Structures (Habitable)

a.            Minimum Setbacks

Front:     50 feet

Side:       6 feet

Rear:       6 feet

Maximum Height:  35 feet

3.            Accessory Structures (Non-habitable)

a.            Minimum Setbacks

Front:     50 feet

Side:       6 feet

Rear:       6 feet

Maximum Height:   35 feet

4.            Wells, pumps, pump houses and associated facilities

a.            Minimum Setbacks

Front:     5 feet

Side:       5 feet

Rear:       5 feet

Height:  35 feet

b. Agricultural windmills and wind machines for crop protection are exempt from the height provisions of this Chapter.

D.            Minimum Distance Between Structures

Main Structures:  10 feet

Accessory Main Structures:  6 feet

Accessory/Accessory:  6 feet

.           Building Site Coverage, Maximum:  3%

F.         Parking Regulations

All parking shall be established pursuant to Chapter 20.58.

G.            Landscaping Requirements

None, except as required as a condition of approval of a Coastal Administrative Permit or Coastal Development Permit.

H.        Lighting Plan Requirements

None, except as required as a condition of approval of a Coastal Administrative Permit or Coastal Development Permit.

I.          Sign Regulations

Signing for all development shall be established pursuant to Chapter 20.60.

J.          Building Site Area

The minimum building site area shall be forty acres.

20.32.070            SPECIAL REGULATIONS.

A.        Special Treatment Areas

An areas designated as "special treatment" area to permit on-site soil dependent agricultural operations such as greenhouses, the minimum parcel size shall be 40 acres.  Subdivision of land in this area shall be approved only under the following conditions:

1.         That the residential development rights on lots formed through subdivision approval be dedicated by means of an agricultural conservation easement to the County or a qualified organization such as that specified in Section 501 (c) (3) of the Internal Revenue Code;

2.         That a drainage management plan to mitigate run- off to adjoining farmlands has been prepared for the entire special treatment area;

3.         That appurtenant structures such as processing, packaging supply and boiler sheds will have concrete foundations no thicker than 4 inches and will be no larger than 4,000 square feet;

4.         That the allowance of 1 mobilehome will be only for a caretaker or security personnel and not for other residential purposes;

5.            That no uses other than agriculture will be allowed on subdivided lots.

B.            Manufactured Dwelling Units

Manufactured dwelling units meeting the standards of Section 20.64.040 are permitted subject to the requirements of any conventional dwelling unit in this Chapter.

C.            Subdivision

a.         Lands within the CAP (CZ) district may not be subdivided unless sufficient evidence is available to demonstrate that:

i. the subdivision will not reduce the agricultural viability of the existing parcel or parcels to be created; and

ii. the subdivision will not be detrimental to the agricultural viability of adjoining parcels.

b.         All divisions of agricultural lands within the CAP (CZ) district shall be conditioned to ensure continued long term agricultural use be requiring agricultural easements, agricultural preserve contracts or other suitable instruments.

D.            Development Siting

Development in the CAP (CZ) district shall be sited in a manner to reduce loss of productive agricultural land, provide efficient farming practice and patterns, reduce impacts on adjoining agricultural operations, and preserve existing environmental resources.