LAFCO History & Laws

Since World War II, California has experienced explosive growth. In the 1950’s urbanization was occurring in an inefficient manner. A number of new or expanded cities had such irregular boundaries that service provision to some areas was infeasible. Numerous special districts were being formed to serve small or difficult to serve areas leading to inefficient or expensive service provision and the needless conversion of agricultural resources.

Farmers were concerned about the unprecedented loss of productive farmland particularly in Southern California, and today, in California’s Central Valley. To address these concerns, LAFCOs were created to act, where appropriate, to minimize the effects of unchecked urban sprawl upon finite prime agricultural and open space land resources, preserve open space and prime agricultural lands, inefficient service delivery systems and to promote orderly development. To accomplish this goal, LAFCOs are required to balance a number of factors including the need to provide the infrastructure for healthy growth with the need to conserve agricultural resources.

The Colusa Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) is a local agency created by the State Legislature in 1963 to assist the state in encouraging the orderly development and formation of local agencies. A LAFCO exists in each of the State’s 58 counties and each is independent of any county, city or independent special district within its jurisdiction.

The mission of the Local Agency Formation Commission of Colusa County is to serve the citizens, governmental agen-cies, and applicants of its jurisdiction by using its authority, knowledge and expertise to make beneficial changes in the structure of public agencies through special studies, programs and actions resulting in the resolution of conflicts; or-derly growth, development, and governance of communities within Colusa County; cost-effective delivery of services; and timely processing of applications.
LAFCO of Colusa County’s responsibilities include review of services provided within Colusa County and review and action on proposals for 1) formation of new local public agencies, 2) change in boundaries of existing local agencies, and 3) other changes in organization of local agencies, such as consolidations of agencies. In making such determinations, LAFCO’s efforts are directed to encouraging the efficient and economic delivery of public services, while protecting other important interests such as the preservation of agricultural and open-space lands.