Here’s what you need to know:

  • After hearing strong public opposition against it, the the Fresno Planning Commission further continued to Sept. 7 consideration of the official plan line (OPL) for the West North Avenue alignment from South Marks to South Elm Avenue. The OPL establishes precise alignment of ultimate road right-of-way and is used as a planning tool for future development.
  • The commission approved a text amendment to the Fresno Municipal Code, relating to the expansion of zone districts where electrified fencing is allowed. 

Follow-up questions:

  • Will the commission vote or continue again the decision on the OPL for West North Ave alignment from South Marks Avenue to South Elm Avenue? 

The Scene

The Fresno Planning Commission meeting began on Wednesday, August 17, 2022, at 6 p.m. available via Livestream through CMAC.

One of the commission members conducted a roll call and pledge of allegiance and ran through the procedures. 

There were no changes to the agenda. The motion to approve the agenda was unanimously approved.


Chairperson – Peter Vang 

Vice Chair – Brad Hardie 

Commissioner – David Criner 

Commissioner – Haley M Wagner 

Commissioner – Kathy Bray 

Commissioner – Monica Diaz 

Commissioner – Robert Fuentes

Consent Calendar

  • None.

Reports by Commissioners

  • None.

Continued Matters ID – 22139

  • CONTINUED FROM AUGUST 3, 2022 Consideration of the Official Plan Line (OPL) for the West North Avenue alignment from South Marks Avenue to South Elm Avenue. (Council District 3) 
  1. RECOMMEND ADOPTION (to the City Council) of Environmental Assessment No. EA-18-004, filed May 18, 2018, resulting in a Mitigated Negative Declaration for purposes of the proposed project. 
  2. RECOMMEND APPROVAL (to the City Council) of the adoption of the Official Plan Line for the West North Avenue alignment from South Marks Avenue to South Elm Avenue pursuant to the Fresno General Plan Land Use and Circulation Map, and in accordance with Exhibit “D” of the Staff Report to the Planning Commission dated August 17, 2022. VII-A ID 22-1329 

Staff Presentation Notes- North Avenue OPL

  • What is an OPL?
    • Establishes precise alignment of ultimate road right-of-way to meet the requirements of the city’s general plan
    • Planning tool for future development
    • Reduces potential impacts to existing homes
  • This OPL will not construct a road and will help out with development projects that come in.
  • This OPL will memorialize the ultimate roadway width and will be used for future traffic signal projects.
  • Background:
    • What triggered the need for this OPL?
      • Current 2035 general plan and southwest fresno specific plan change west north avenue from a 4 lane arterial to a 2 lane arterial
      • Request was made to the public works department.
  • Constraints of the current 2035 general plan alignment
    • Existing homes along North Avenue
    • Fresno irrigation district infrastructure crossing North Avenue
    • Future development along North Avenue
    • Infrastructure along North Avenue
  • Chairperson Peter Vang asked the presenter if he has received any correspondence from the public in regards to this. 
    • The presenter said that he received some phone calls that asked when the city was going to start the project. Other concerns included truck traffic. 

Public Comments:

  • Emily Brant opposed this plan. She said, “we do not know how many people are going to be displaced.”
  • Diane Smith opposed this plan. She had two complaints. The staffpersons’ paperwork is not available. Exhibit D is also not available today. She said that people should be provided with the paperwork. She said that North Avenue is a two-lane.
  • Rita McPeters opposed this plan. She said that the presenter lied when he let people know about this information. She is very “upset” because no one in her area was notified about this meeting. “What are you guys doing?! Doing stuff without our backs and taking our land? My family have been here for 69 years. Taking our whole front yard is wrong.” 
  • Brunette Harris opposed this plan. “You guys just sit here and don’t do anything. Our community didn’t know anything about it. This is a phase-out.” She argues that the city never lets the public know about anything. 
  • Bobby (last name not disclosed) opposed this plan. “Someone sows and someone reaps.” She recounts that this plan will take the community out. She heavily disagrees and opposes.
  • Linda Harris opposes this plan. “This does not make any sense. You guys go to their house and tell them that you need to go, you need to go.” She says that the council is coming to everyone’s house and stealing their home for a plan. “How do you lay down and sleep when you take their homes.” 
  • Ivan Gordon opposes this plan. She has been living near the path for the last 32 years. “I’m not going to let people take my house for their convenience.”
  • Lisa Flores is a member of the AB 617 committee who spoke in defense of this plan. This plan will help development and causes of pollution in the community. She told the planning commission to try to look at the truck reroute study and improve the information that goes to the public. She spoke on the dangers of redlining and environmental racism. 
  • The presenter responded that they are doing their best to not affect the properties.
  • A commission member asked how much of the road will be taken from the properties. 
    • The city will pay the property owner for utilizing the sidewalk or yard if needed.

The motion to continue this matter to September 7 is approved.

New Matters ID 22 1320

  • Consideration of Text Amendment Application No. P21-05809 and related Environmental Finding for Environmental Assessment No. P21-05809, amending Section 15-2010 of the Fresno Municipal Code, relating to the Zone Districts where Electrified Fences are permitted. (Referred back to Planning Commission by City Council in accordance with Fresno Municipal Code Section 15-5810(b).) 
  1. RECOMMEND APPROVAL (to the City Council), of a finding set forth in Environmental Assessment No. P21-05809 dated April 20, 2022, that Text Amendment Application No. P21-05809 is exempt from the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) pursuant to the Common Sense Exemption that it can be seen with certainty that there is no possibility that the proposed text amendment may have a significant effect on the environment pursuant to CEQA Guidelines Section 15061(b)(3). 
  2. RECOMMEND APPROVAL (to the City Council) as set forth by the Planning Commission and staff of Text Amendment Application No. P21-05809, to amend Section 15 -2010 of the Fresno Municipal Code relating to the Zone Districts where Electrified Fences are permitted.

Public Comments

  • Keith Kaneco wanted to provide clarity on this plan. He wanted to enter into the record the actual draft language that the council accepted. The whole discussion was abutting development zones and abutting development uses.
  • Lisa Harris pointed out that she does not like the expansion of electric fences. She asks why this presentation was not more cohesive and this is now more confusing. 

Motion by Commissioner Fuente was unanimously approved.

Report By Secretary

  • None.


  • The meeting was adjourned at 7:28 p.m. The meeting lasted one hour and 28 minutes.

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