Lead Agency Sends a Notice of Preparation to the Responsible Agency
  1. What is a Notice of Preparation?
  2. When does a Notice of Preparation need to be prepared?
  3. Who needs to be sent a copy of the Notice of Preparation?
  4. What information must be included in a Notice of Preparation?
  5. How should the Notice of Preparation be sent?
  6. Does the Lead Agency need to wait until responses from other agencies to the Notice of Preparation are returned before preparing the draft EIR?
  7. When must responses to the Notice of Preparation be returned to the Lead Agency by?
  8. What must the response to the Notice of Preparation include?
  9. What happens if a Responsible Agency fails to provide the Lead Agency with a response or a well justified request for additional time?
  10. Is there a sample Notice of Preparation document that I can use as a template?

 

1. What is a Notice of Preparation?

A Notice of Preparation is a document stating that an EIR will be prepared for a particular project. It is the first step in the EIR process. (14 California Code of Regulations §15082)

2. When does a Notice of Preparation need to be prepared?

A Notice of Preparation needs to be prepared immediately after deciding that an EIR is required for a project. (14 California Code of Regulations §15082)

3. Who needs to be sent a copy of the Notice of Preparation?

Each Responsible Agency needs to be sent a Notice of Preparation as well as every federal agency that is involved in approving or funding the project. Each Trustee Agency responsible for natural resources affected by the project also needs to be informed. (14 California Code of Regulations §§15080 - 15096)

4. What information needs to be included in a Notice of Preparation?

The Notice of Preparation should provide the Responsible Agencies with sufficient information describing the project and the potential environmental effects to allow the Responsible Agencies to make a meaningful response. At a minimum, the information should include:

  • Description of the project .
  • Location of the project indicated on an attached map .
  • Probable environmental affects of the project.

A copy of the Initial Study may be sent with the notice to supply the necessary information. (14 California Code of Regulations §15082)

5. How should the Notice of Preparation be sent?

The Lead Agency should use either certified mail or any other method of transmittal which provides it with a record that the notice was received when sending a notice of preparation. (14 California Code of Regulations §15082)

6. Does the Lead Agency need to wait until responses from other agencies to the Notice of Preparation are returned before preparing the draft EIR?

No. The Lead Agency may begin work on the draft EIR immediately without awaiting responses to the Notice of Preparation. The draft EIR in preparation may need to be revised or expanded to conform to responses to the Notice of Preparation. A Lead Agency cannot circulate a draft EIR for public review before the time period for responses to the Notice of Preparation has expired. (14 California Code of Regulations §15082)

7. When must responses to the Notice of Preparation be returned to the Lead Agency by?

Within 30 days after receiving the Notice of Preparation, each Responsible Agency must provide the Lead Agency with specific detail about the scope and content of the environmental information related to the Responsible Agency's area of statutory responsibility. This information must be included in the draft EIR. (14 California Code of Regulations §15082, 14 California Code of Regulations §15103)

8. What must the response to the Notice of Preparation include?

The response to the Notice of Preparation, at a minimum, should identify:

  • The significant environmental issues and reasonable alternatives and mitigation measures which the Responsible Agency will need to have explored in the draft EIR; and
  • Whether the agency will be a Responsible Agency or Trustee Agency for the project.
(14 California Code of Regulations §15082)

9. What happens if a Responsible Agency fails to provide the Lead Agency with a response or a well justified request for additional time?

If a Responsible Agency fails by the end of a 30 day period to provide the Lead Agency with either a response to the notice or a well justified request for additional time, the Lead Agency may presume that the Responsible Agency has no response to make. (14 California Code of Regulations §15082.)

10. Is there a sample Notice of Preparation document that I can use as a template?

Yes. Here is a link to a sample Notice of Preparation.

Appendix J