Reasons for Exemption
Class 2- consists of replacement or reconstruction of existing structures and facilities where the new structure will be located on the same site as the structure replaced and will have substantially the same purpose and capacity as the structure replaced, including but not limited to: (a) Replacement or reconstruction of existing schools and hospitals to provide earthquake resistant structures which do not increase capacity more than 50 percent, (b) Replacement of a commercial structure with a new structure of substantially the same size, purpose, and capacity, (c) Replacement or reconstruction of existing utility systems and/or facilities involving negligible or no expansion of capacity, (d) Conversion of overhead electric utility distribution system facilities to underground including connection to existing overhead electric utility distribution lines where the surface is restored to the condition existing prior to the undergrounding.
Class 3 - Construction and location of limited numbers of new, small facilities or structures; installation of small new equipment and facilities in small structures; and the conversion of existing small structure from one use to another where only minor modifications are made in the exterior of the structure. In addition, none of the conditions described in Section 15300.2 apply to this project. The proposed wireless facility, including the lease area, wireless faux monopine, equipment within the lease area, and facility fencing is not located within a biotic resource area, sensitive habitat, visible from a scenic roadway or visual resource area or Include significant hazardous substances. Propane tanks are common to residential development in the rural area and not considered to include significant hazardous materials. The site is also not identified on the hazardous site list by the Environmental Health Agency. Pursuant to section 15061, the commonsense exemption applies here because the replacement facility is designed as a faux monopine and located in a forest setting surrounded by tall trees which camouflage the facility as a pine tree and landscape screening is provided to screen private understory views to the extent feasible. Limited private views of the facility tree trunk and top of faux monopine are not considered environmental impacts. Thus, there is no reasonable possibility that the replacement facility would have an environmental impact.