About the Local Agency Formation Commission
The Stanislaus Local Agency Formation Commission (LAFCO) is responsible for coordinating logical and timely changes in local governmental boundaries, adopting Spheres of Influence for each city and special district within Stanislaus County, and preparing Municipal Services Reviews for agencies within its purview. LAFCO is an independent agency operated by three staff, governed by a five-member Commission, and functions in accordance with Government Code Section 56000, the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Local Government Reorganization Act of 2000, et. seq. The Act sets forth three main goals of LAFCO:
- Encourage the Orderly Formation of Local Governmental Agencies
- LAFCOs review proposals for the formation of new local governmental agencies and changes of organization in existing agencies. The complexity of local government, with agency boundaries often unrelated to one another and sometimes overlapping at random, can lead to higher service costs to the taxpayer and general confusion with regard to service jurisdictions. LAFCO decisions strive to balance the competing needs for affordable housing, economic opportunity, and conservation of natural resources.
- Preserve Agricultural Land Resources
- LAFCO must consider the effect that any proposal will produce on existing agricultural lands. By guiding development towards vacant urban land and away from agricultural preserves, LAFCO assists with the preservation of valuable agricultural resources.
- Discourage Urban Sprawl
- Urban sprawl can best be described as irregular and disorganized growth occurring without apparent design or plan, characterized by the inefficient delivery of important urban services (police, fire, water, and sanitation) and the unnecessary loss of agricultural land. By discouraging sprawl, LAFCO discourages the misuse of land resources and promotes a more efficient system of local governmental agencies.
- California Association of Local Agency Formation Commissions (CALAFCO)
- County Directory for California Association of Local Agency Formation Commissions
- Government Compensation in California - Public Employee Salaries
- Enterprise System Catalog (SB272)
- Guide to the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Local Government Reorganization Act of 2000 [PDF format - Dec. 2021]
- 50 Years of LAFCOs: A Guide to LAFCOs - California's Local Agency Formation Commissions [PDF format - Dec. 2013]
- What's So Special About Special Districts? - A Citizen's Guide to Special Districts in California [PDF format - Oct. 2010]
- Little Hoover Commission Special Districts: Improving Oversight & Transparency