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By San Clemente Councilmember Kathy Ward

Kathy Ward

San Clemente City Hall is located at 910 Calle Negocio in the Rancho San Clemente Business Park. All departments were merged to this building with the exception of Parks & Recreation, whose office is at the Community Center on Calle Seville.

Any of you who have come to our merged and new city hall for the past year witnessed the remodeling underway to create a lobby that would facilitate city public functions.

Do you need a permit, or to pay a water bill or talk to a city engineer? Those are just some of the services you can access by visiting the city’s new lobby.

There are many different departments and services the public can access at the counter in our lobby, and I’d like to share with you the functions of each department and what services they provide.

Public Works:

The Development Section reviews proposed development and redevelopment projects from inception to completion, including coordination with the Planning and Building Divisions of the Community Development Department.

Staff provides and coordinates review of, and issues permits for, the following: Grading plans; Improvement plans; Geotechnical boring permits; Encroachment work in the public right-of-way and City easements; Subdivision maps for both new development and major redevelopment projects.

Development staff also assists the public to answer questions and provide information on issues such as permits, property research and property line inquiries, development site plans, street improvements, tract maps, soils reports, and analysis of proposed projects.

Community Development:

The Community Development Department provides Planning and Building assistance to customers on an appointment and walk-in basis over the counter. The Building Division processes and provides information on building, mechanical, plumbing and electrical permit applications and informs the public of related State and City construction codes.

Residential permits comprise the majority of permits issued by staff. Since January, staff has issued 1,003 building permits, with an average per month of 143 permits. Staff also issued 1,437 plumbing, electrical, and mechanical permits, with an average of 205 per month.

The Planning Division assists the public with zoning questions and reviews and processes development applications for compliance with the City’s General Plan and Zoning Ordinance. The Planning Division assists 7,699 people annually at the counter and over the phone. Over this past year, the Planning Division took in 149 discretionary applications, 475 administrative applications and 2,890 zoning plan checks.

If you need to simply pay your water bill, buy a city parking permit or just have a question you need answered, our staff looks forward to helping you in the city’s new lobby.

The public should also know that OC Sheriff’s Lieutenant Edward Manhart and Administrative Sergeant Paul Ketchum of the city’s Police Services now occupy an office at city hall.

I would like to thank the public for their patience during our remodeling. I would also like to thank all of our employees for their patience, providing input, and for all you have done to facilitate the new improvements to make city hall functions the best they can be.

It is exciting to have a new functional lobby to provide services to you and to have most of our employee services together in one building. Please remember the entrance to the city hall reception area and service counters is now located at the front entrance of the building, and parking is also provided in front. If you have any questions before you visit city hall, please call 361-8200 for information.


Kathy Ward is a city councilmember who was elected in 2014 and re-elected in 2018.

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