Summit Road Shaded Fuel Break


SCH Number
Public Agency
Santa Cruz County Resource Conservation District
Document Title
Summit Road Shaded Fuel Break
Document Type
NOE - Notice of Exemption
Document Description
This project will create a shaded fuel break by removing small trees, underbrush and low hanging limbs on trees within 100’ of Summit Road. Large (over 8” measured at diameter at breast height), healthy trees will be retained; dead/dying trees will be removed. Also removed will be trees leaning over the roadway that are at increased susceptibility to falling over the road during wildfires as well as dead trees that have fallen onto the ground. Where large, healthy trees are not present or there are large gaps in the tree canopies, small trees and/or shrubs will be retained, spaced about 15-20’ apart. Most of the cut material will be chipped and broadcast back onsite; material too large for chipping will be hauled off-site. By removing this vegetation, a future wildfire will burn with less intensity, at a slower rate of spread and with a decreased potential for fire to climb into treetops – making fire suppression easier and evacuation during a wildfire safer. Portions of this 100’ zone along the roadside will not receive any work where the project interfaces with the maintained yards of residents. This generally occurs within the 100’ “Defensible Space” residents have already created. Within this project the woody invasive species, such as French broom, will be cut and removed. The stumps of broom over one inch in diameter will be treated with herbicide; specimens smaller than this will receive a direct foliar application of herbicide. All application will occur with a Licensed Applicator in accordance with the guidelines specified by a licensed Pest Control Advisor (PCA). It is anticipated much of the project will be conducted during the summer and fall months, with follow-up maintenance occurring periodically, as needed.

Contact Information

James McKenna
Agency Name
Resource Conservation District of Santa Cruz County
Job Title
Board President
Contact Types
Lead/Public Agency

Matt Abernathy
Agency Name
Resource Conservation District of Santa Cruz County
Job Title
Forest Health and Wildfire Resiliency Program Specialist
Contact Types
Lead/Public Agency


Los Gatos
Santa Clara, Santa Cruz
Cross Streets
Highway 17 to cross streets at Highland Way and Mount Bache Road
Total Acres
Up to 68.5 acres
State Highways
Highway 17, Highway 35
Loma Prieta Joint School District
Laurel Creek
Other Location Info
Project is located on up to 165 individual parcels.

Notice of Exemption

Exempt Status
Categorical Exemption
Type, Section or Code
Sec. 15304 Class 4
Reasons for Exemption
The RCD is proposing the qualification of exemption from comprehensive CEQA analysis under the Class 4 category for minor alterations to land. This project will consist of fuels management activities for the creation of a shaded fuel break. The proposed project will reduce flammable vegetation and will not result in the taking of endangered, rare, or threatened plant or animal species, significant impacts to surface waters, or impact to cultural resources. For the reasons stated above, this project shall be exempt from the provisions of CEQA.
County Clerks
Santa Clara, Santa Cruz


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