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Part 1 California Administrative CodePart 2 California Building Code, Volumes 1 & 2Part 2.5 California Residential Code (NEW)Part 3 California Electrical CodePart 4 California Mechanical CodePart 5 California Plumbing CodePart 6 California Energy CodePart 8 California Historical Building CodePart 9 California Fire CodePart 11 California Green Building Standards Code - CALGreen, 1st State-Adopted Green CodePart 12 California Referenced Standards Code
2009 International Code for Property Maintenance2009 International Existing Building Code, Chapters 9, 14 and Appendices A1, A2, A3, A4 & A5
Los Gatos Town Code
• Single-family dwellings of wood frame construction not more than two stories and/or including basement in height.
• Multiple dwellings containing no more than four dwelling units of wood frame construction not more than two stories and basement in height. Not more than four dwelling units per lot.
• Garages or other structures appurtenant to dwellings, of wood frame construction not more than two stories and basement in height.
• Agricultural and ranch buildings of wood frame construction.*• Nonstructural store fronts, interior alterations or additions, fixtures, cabinetwork, furniture, or other appliances or equipment including nonstructural work necessary to provide for their installation.
• Nonstructural alterations or additions to any building necessary to or attendant upon the installation of such storefronts, interior alterations or additions, fixtures, cabinetwork, furniture, appliances, or equipment.
• May not design any component that affects the safety of any building or its occupants, including but not limited to structural or seismic components.
* Unless the building official having jurisdiction deems that an undue risk to the public health, safety or welfare is involvedStructural Engineers * have no Limitations; may design any building of any type.
Applicable Statutes - 6731, 6736, 5537.1 of B & P Code
Civil Engineers * may design any building except hospitals or schools.
Applicable Statutes - 15013 of H & S Code 5537.5, 6731, 6735 of B & P Code
Architects * may design any type building except the structural portion of a hospital.
Applicable Statutes - 15048 of H & S Code, 5500.1, 6737 of B & P Code
Not all homes or commercial buildings need a backflow valve. New structures, new installation or alterations of plumbing fixtures require the installation of a backwater valve if the lowest finished floor elevation is less than one foot above the uphill manhole cover of the public sewer system. Existing homes or commercial buildings located in older parts of Los Gatos may have been constructed or had plumbing repairs completed before the requirement of a backwater valve and may need backflow protection. Los Gatos Town Code section 22.20.055(b) provides the Town of Los Gatos is not liable for damage resulting from sewer overflow where the property owner or other person has failed to install and maintain a backflow valve.The Town suggests that while you are working on your plumbing system you have your plumber or West Valley Sanitation District investigate your property to see if a backwater valve is necessary to protect your property. Although the cost can vary, the one-time cost may save your personal property and help eliminate potential unnecessary hardships. Backwater Valve Handout
Public drop-in counter hours are Monday - Friday, 8 AM - 1 PM. Planners may be available by appointment during non-counter hours by calling (408) 354-6874. Map & Directions to Town Civic Center
To find out more information about the General Plan Update, visit General Plan Update Website.
Council meeting are held on the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays (except Holidays) at 7:00 p.m. in the Town Council Chambers, located at 110 E. Main Street
For matters that are not on the Town Council agenda, input may be given at a Town Council meeting during 'Verbal Communications'. Up to three minutes may be allotted to each speaker. Public Guide to Town Council Meetings
The Town of Los Gatos and Police Department are offering this new service to further its goal of "knowing everyone in the community," a worthwhile endeavor which has already demonstrated its value to the community. For more information, contact the Personnel and Community Services Divison at (408) 354-6842.
The Chamber of Commerce has an event calendar that lists upcoming community-wide events.
For more information, call (408) 399-5770 Monday-Friday between 8:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m. or (408) 354-8600 after hours.
For Santa Clara Valley Water District Flood safety tips and to find other sandbag locations, visit the website below.
• Explanation of the relationship to and consistency with the General Plan;• Location and distribution of land uses, including the amount of each type and the development densities and intensities;• Development standards and guidelines for each land use;• Transportation circulation, other infrastructure, and public facilities to support the planned level of development; and• Implementation strategies, including financing of infrastructure.
Once a Specific Plan is adopted, development applications for the area are reviewed by the municipality for consistency with the Specific Plan as well as other applicable governing land use documents in the community.
The North 40 Specific Plan Advisory Committee (N40 AC) was established by the Town Council on March 7, 2011. The goal of the N40 AC was to serve as an Advisory Committee to the Town Council and the Planning Commission through coordination with staff and interaction with the community. The N40 AC consisted of nine members from the General Plan Committee, and up to six members of the community from the General Plan Update Advisory Committee. The N40 AC began meeting in March of 2011 and concluded their work on October 15, 2013. All meetings were open to the public and community members provided input at the meetings and in writing. The N40 AC considered all public comments in its deliberations. The N40 AC meeting minutes and reports are available here.
An Environmental Impact report (EIR) for the Draft Specific Plan was prepared and circulated for public comment in early 2014. The document received 35 comments. The Planning Commission considered the Draft Specific Plan and EIR at two meetings in July and August of 2014 at which 25 people provided public testimony. The Commission also considered all written public comments as documented in the reports available on the North 40 website. The Planning Commission deliberated on all of the information and public comments, and forwarded its recommendations to the Town Council for the Council’s consideration which occurred on August 13, 2014.
The Town Council considered the Draft Specific Plan and EIR on eight occasions between September 2014 and June 2015. During these proceedings, the public had multiple opportunities to submit written comments and provide verbal testimony as documented on the North 40 website, Council videos, and written reports and summaries. The Final EIR was certified on January 5, 2015 and the North 40 Specific Plan was adopted on June 17, 2015, incorporating the modifications approved by the Council based on its deliberations, consideration of public testimony, Planning Commission recommendations, and all other information contained in the record.
The North 40 reflects the special nature of our hometown. It celebrates our history, agricultural heritage, hillside views, and small town character. The North 40 is seamlessly woven into the fabric of our community, complementing other Los Gatos residential and business neighborhoods. It is respectful of precious community resources and offers unique attributes that enrich the quality of life of all of our residents.
Guiding Principles to Achieve this Vision
• The North 40 will look and feel like Los Gatos. • The North 40 will embrace hillside views, trees, and open space. • The North 40 will address the Town’s residential and/or commercial unmet needs. • The North 40 will minimize or mitigate impacts on town infrastructure, schools, and other community services.
The Council reduced the development amount from the recommended quantities by the North 40 Advisory Committee (364 housing units and 580,000 square feet of non-residential development). The Planning Commission and Town Council meeting minutes and reports are available here.
Click here for the Draft EIR Appendices.
Click here for the Final EIR.
• Albright-Los Gatos Business Park• Sutter Health-Palo Alto Medical (15400 Los Gatos Boulevard)• Stanford Cancer Center (Corner of Los Gatos Boulevard and Samaritan Drive-San Jose)• CVS (15650 Los Gatos Boulevard)• Swanson Ford Mixed Use Development (Corner of Los Gatos Boulevard and Blossom Hill Road)• Dell Avenue Area Plan (Campbell)• Additional smaller pending or recently approved projects were also included
The TIA analyzed the cumulative traffic impacts associated with the North 40 in the context of these pending or ongoing development applications. The TIA includes any mitigation measures that are proposed or required as a result of these projects and analyzed the required mitigation measures associated with the North 40 Specific Plan to reduce potential traffic impacts to a less than significant level pursuant to State law regarding environmental analysis, the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).
The housing element law is the State’s primary market-based strategy to increase housing supply, affordability, and choice. The law recognizes that in order for the private sector to adequately address housing needs and demand, local governments must adopt land use plans and regulatory schemes that provide opportunities for, and do not unduly constrain, housing development. By law, every jurisdiction must plan for its fair share of new housing for all income segments of the community.
The housing element process begins with the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) and Department of Finance (DOF) identifying the total housing need for the San Francisco Bay Area for an eight-year period. The Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) then distributes this need to local governments based on a methodology developed by representatives of the nine County Bay region and adopted by the ABAG Executive Board.. The methodology considered existing local General Plans, projected job growth, transit locations, and other factors. As a result, housing policy in the State rests largely upon the effective implementation of local general plans and, in particular, local housing elements. Housing element law also requires the HCD to review local housing elements for compliance with State law and to report its written findings to the local government.
Los Gatos was required to plan for 619 housing units per State law.
The Planning Commission conducted its required public hearings on the draft Housing Element and also made its recommendations. The Town Council considered both sets of recommendations as well as additional public testimony when it made the final decision to adopt the housing element. The Council’s final decision on planned locations for new housing included the North 40. All of the deliberations and materials regarding the Housing Element can be found here.
Technical Appendices: Click here.
The meeting minutes and reports for the Housing Element Advisory Board (HEAB) can be found on the Town website: Click here.
In response to the Town’s draft housing element, the HCD determined that the Town did not demonstrate adequate sites, appropriately zoned to meet the jurisdictions share of the regional housing needs. In order to obtain certification of the Town’s housing element from HCD, the Town had to designate sites including providing zoning that allows owner-occupied and rental multi-family uses “by-right” with minimum densities and development standards.
The phrase "use by right” shall mean the local government's review of the owner occupied or multifamily residential use may not require a conditional use permit, planned unit development permit, or other discretionary local government review or approval that would constitute a “project” for purposes of Division 13 (commencing with Section 21000) of the Public Resources Code [CEQA]. Any subdivision of the sites shall be subject to all laws, including, but not limited to, the local government ordinance implementing the Subdivision Map Act. A local ordinance may provide that “use by right” does not exempt the use from design review. However, that design review shall not constitute a “project” for purposes of [CEQA]. Use by right for all rental multifamily residential housing shall be provided in accordance with subdivision (f) of Section 65589.5.25. The concept is to require the community to identify sites that are available for development with affordable housing without any discretionary review, 25 §65589.5(f) permits a local agency to require developments to comply with development standards consistent with meeting the quantified objectives and to impose fees to provide services and facilities.
• Widening of Lark Avenue to accommodate additional traffic lanes, and • Modifications to Los Gatos Boulevard within the existing right-of-way, both south and north of Lark Avenue.
Additionally, the Specific Plan required that each phase of proposed development provide a traffic analysis to determine that the traffic and impacts studied within the EIR are not intensified with a proposed project within the Plan Area.
Developers and School Boards can voluntarily consider additional arrangements. For the southern portion of the North 40 Area, the Los Gatos Union School District Board entered into an agreement with the prospective developers regarding school issues. It can be viewed here.
The process through which the government acquires private property for public benefit is known as condemnation. Most condemnation proceedings turn on the value of the property at issue. How much a piece of property (or an interest in property) is worth depends on many factors. The zoning of the property and the value of surrounding properties provide useful guidance for the calculation. The many unique characteristics of a property often result in a different estimation of value between the property owner and the government. In addition to an appraiser and an attorney, each side may have additional experts, such as engineers and architects. Factors that are considered in property valuation include: its size, how it is zoned, what kinds of buildings and roads are on it, what it's currently being used for, what it could be used for, how accessible it is, what other businesses or land uses are adjacent or nearby, and whether there are tenants or other leaseholders involved.
Given the value of the North 40 with the adopted Specific Plan and zoning, it is unlikely that the Town would have the resources to purchase the land for fair market value under these processes even with corporate donations and other tax revenue.
Under the Town Code outside of the Specific Plan area, all uses involving the service of alcohol require a CUP. Because the Specific Plan establishes zoning rules specific for the North 40 area, restaurants offering alcoholic beverage service do not require a CUP. In contrast, under the Specific Plan, a standalone bar requires a CUP.
The Town Council can repeal or amend the North 40 Specific Plan. Chapter 6.5 in the Specific Plan specifically addresses the process for amendments. Any application that has been deem complete under the permitting streamlining act or subdivision map act would not be subject to the repeal or amendments that were made by Council.
The Town currently provides for non-discretionary review of new second units in Town. In addition, there are properties with multi-family zoning within the Town for new condominium or apartment developments.
Vehicles parking with in the residential permit areas must have a current parking permit on the vehicle. Overnight parking in downtown lots is prohibited where posted.
Office of Parking ViolationsTown of Los GatosP O Box 11113San Jose CA 95103-1113
You have 21 days from the original citation date in which to make an appeal - request an administrative investigation. The procedure for appeal is printed on the back of the citation. On-line appeals can be made by visiting www.pticket.com/losgatos
You will be required to fill out a "Parking Appeal Investigation" form, stating your reason(s) for believing the citation was issued in error or why you are not liable for the alleged violation. You will be notified of the decision by mail, usually within 30 calendar days.
Yes, If your Administrative Investigation is denied you may appeal. You have 21 days from the date the denial notification was mailed to file a written request with an explanation for this review. No official form is provided for this request. Mail your second appeal with the full amount of the citation to Los Gatos-Monte Sereno Police Department, Attn: Parking, 110 E. Main St., Los Gatos, CA 95030 or deliver in person to 110 E. Main Street, Los Gatos. The full amount of the citation will be refunded if your citation is dismissed, the amount is forfeited if the citation is deemed valid. If your second appeal is denied, an appeal may be filed in the Santa Clara County Civil Court within 21 days from date of denial of the second appeal. This court will review the factual aspects of the case, the administrative process, and the decision of the Hearing Examiner. The decision of the Civil Court may be communicated in person or by mail.
You may apply for a special event parking permit by calling Jackie Rose, Community Outreach Coordinator at (408) 354-6853 or by appearing in person at the Los Gatos-Monte Sereno Police Department, 110 E. Main St., Los Gatos, CA 95030, Monday through Thursday, between the hours of 9:00 am - 4:00 pm. and Friday, between the hours of 9:00 am -1:00 pm. Appointments may be needed.
Town of Los Gatos online parking management system is operated by Turbo Data Systems Inc. The online system provides capabilities for ordering, purchasing and managing your individual Residential Parking Permit account. The Town of Los Gatos issues residential and employee parking permits for specific locations in Town. There are six Residential Parking Permit Districts close to downtown Los Gatos and there is one Employee Permit District. The parking permits are valid only for residents and businesses in those specific districts and allow unlimited parking to permit holders within their district.
Yes, They may be acquired at the Los Gatos-Monte Sereno Police Department, Monday through Thursday, between the hours of 9:00 am - 4:00 pm. and Friday, 9:00 am - 1:00 pm. If you have any questions on the fees, please call 408-354-6853. Appointments may be needed.
For example, the curb may not be painted green but if there is a sign posted that limits parking to 30 minutes - the 30 limits limitation will be enforced.
Another example would be at a fire hydrant that does not have an accompanying red curb. It is still a violation to park within 15 feet of a fire hydrant.
Yes, but only for FIRE LANE and HANDICAPPED STALL enforcement. One is mandated by the fire marshall and the other by the Town. Both are conditions of the property owners use permit.
Residents can call Los Gatos Communications - (408) 354-8600 to report parking problems or violations.
Call the Abandoned Vehicle Hotline (408) 399-5716, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week or complete a PDF complaint form http://www.losgatosca.gov/forms.aspx?FID=84" target="_blank">Abandoned Vehicle Complaint Form and fax it to (408) 354-0578. Or complete an online form by clicking on the link below. Have available a description of the vehicle, location, license number and how long it has been there. An officer will respond as soon as available. Please note that vehicles parked on private property are not the responsibilty of the Police Department. Only vehicles parked on Town owned streets, alleys, and off street parking facilities are responded to. If you have any questions about vehicles on private property, contact Code Compliance at (408) 399-5720.
If your vehicle was “impounded,” this means that the police department has placed a hold on the vehicle, and it may not yet be available for release. The most common reason for a vehicle impound is that it was driven by a suspended or unlicensed driver. If this is the case, the vehicle will be held for a period of 30 days, and you must wait for this time to elapse before requesting a release. After the 30 day period has passed, the registered owner may come to the police department to obtain a release. A fee set by Town Council will be charged for release of a stored or impounded vehicle. The registered owner will be required to show a valid driver’s license and proof of current registration for the vehicle. Should the registered owner not have a valid license, a current and valid government issued picture I.D. and the presence of a licensed driver, will be required. If the registration fees have been paid at DMV but a smog is still needed to complete the registration, the registered owner will need to bring in a 'moving permit' issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles. Note, you may also be charged by the towing company for towing and storage fees they incurred before they will release the vehicle.
If your vehicle was “stored”, it is available for immediate release. The procedure for this release is the same as for an impounded vehicle, but without the waiting period.
If your vehicle was "booted", you will need to pay any and all outstanding parking citations as well as the vehicle release fee within 72 hours of the "Boot" being placed on your vehicle tire. If the fees haven't been paid within the 72 hours, your vehicle will then be towed as a "stored" vehicle. You will then have to pay any incurred towed vehicle fees in addition to the vehicle release fee and any parking citations.
The Los Gatos Town Council adopted the 2020 General Plan on September 20, 2010. To view the 2020 General Plan document, please click 2020 General Plan. For information on the next General Plan update, please click here.
Please note: In order to use the Interactive GIS Map, you will need the latest version of Microsoft Internet Explorer, allow for pop-ups in the web browser, and download the AutoDesk map program when prompted. If unable to use GIS, please contact a Planner for zoning information.
For Aerial Photographs, Zoning and General Plan Information, please click on Legend: ON, and check the box for the appropriate map data. For Aerial Photographs, please note that you will need to zoom in until the Aerial Photographs option appears in the legend.
One accessory structure less than 120 square feet, is allowed in the required side or rear setbacks without any zoning approvals. Any accessory structure in excess of one will be subject to the requirements set forth by Section 29.40.015 of the zoning ordinance. All accessory structures more than 120 square feet are subject to the requirements set forth by Section 29.40.015 of the Zoning Ordinance.
Although your mailing address reflects Los Gatos as the city, your property is technically located in an unincorporated portion of Santa Clara County. Since your property has not been annexed into the Town of Los Gatos, your public services are provided by Santa Clara County, including services such as planning, development review, and building permits. For planning inquiries, please refer to the County of Santa Clara or contact the Planning Office directly at 408-299-5770.
If you own a property that abuts a Town boundary or is within 300 feet of a road that is maintained by the Town, you may be required to annex in conjunction with a development proposal. Typical projects that trigger annexation are subdivisions, new single-family homes and significant remodel projects that involve demolition of more than 50% of the existing home. You should contact the Santa Clara County Planning Department at 408-299-5770 to determine if your project will trigger annexation.
Town Code permits new accessory dwelling units on properties in the R-1, RD, RM, R-1D, HR, and RC zones. Requirements and limitations can be found in Section 29.10.320 of the Town Code. Answers to FAQs regarding accessory dwelling unit regulations can be found here. For additional information as how this might apply to a specific property you should contact a Planner.
First, determine the zoning district your property is located in by entering in your address or Assessor’s Parcel Number in our Interactive Map. Then, look up the permitted uses for your zoning district. If your use is not listed, refer to the Conditional Use Permit (CUP) Table to determine if your use requires a CUP. Uses that typically require a CUP include restaurants, banks, alcohol sales, child care facilities, formula retail stores and schools. Some personal service businesses require a CUP depending on location.
Click here to find out.
Appear at the:Los Gatos/Monte Sereno Police Operations Building15900 Los Gatos BoulevardLos Gatos, CA 95032to report a crime 24 hours a day/7 days a week, to speak to a police officer, to pick up evidence or found property by appointment only, or to speak with a Detective by appointment only.
Copies of Police Reports: Authorized persons may receive a copy of a police report for a fee of $21.00. There is no charge for victims of domestic violence. Contact the Records Division at (408) 354-5257 to confirm that the report is ready for release.
Vehicle Releases: If your vehicle is ordered stored by the Los Gatos/Monte Sereno Police Department, contact the Records Division, during business hours, at (408) 354-5257, for information regarding release of that vehicle. During non-business hours, call (408) 354-8600.
9-1-1 and non emergency calls can be transferred to a translator. Los Gatos dispatchers are able to handle calls directly from the TTY.
When calling 9-1-1, it is very important to stay on the phone, even if 9-1-1 was dialed in error. Even if you hang up, prior to the phone ringing, we get the 9-1-1 call. The dispatcher is required to verify where the call is coming from. If you hang up and the dispatcher is unable re-contact you, a police officer will be sent to the location the 9-1-1 computer provides. By staying on the phone, the dispatcher will be able to verify the computer provided location is correct and that no emergency exists. Language Identification Guide
If your vehicle was “impounded,” this means that the police department has placed a hold on the vehicle, and it may not yet be available for release. The most common reason for a vehicle impound is that it was driven by a suspended, or unlicensed driver. If this is the case, the vehicle will be held for a period of 30 days, and you must wait for this time to elapse before requesting a release. After the 30 day period has passed, the registered owner may come to the police department to obtain a release. A fee will be charged, and the registered owner will be required to show a valid driver’s license and current registration for a vehicle. Depending if the vehicle needs a 'smog check' you might have to provide us with a 'moving permit' issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles. Should the registered owner not have a valid license, a current and valid issued government I.D. will be required as well as the presence of a licensed driver for release of the vehicle.
If your vehicle was “stored”, it is available for immediate release. The procedure for this release is the same as for an impounded vehicle, but without the waiting period.
California Highway Patrol2020 Junction Ave(408)467-5400
San Jose Police Department201. W. Mission StreetSan Jose, Ca 95110(408) 279-8383
The Town of Los Gatos and Police Department are offering this new service to further its goal of "knowing everyone in the community," a worthwhile endeavor which has already demonstrated its value to the community. For more information, contact the Personnel and Community Services Divison at (408) 354-6853. Resident Services
Set out your tree at the curb on your usual collection day - do not put the tree in your yard waste cart.
If your tree is over 6 feet tall, it must be cut in half. All decorations, tinsel, stands, and nails must be removed. Flocked trees are acceptable. For more information, contact West Valley Collection and Recycling at (408) 283-9250 or visit West Valley Collection and Recycling
Guadalupe Landfill(408) 268-166615999 Guadalupe Mines Road (in the Almaden area of San Jose)Hours: M-F, 8 a.m.- 4:45 p.m.
Other local landfills include:
Zanker Road Landfill(408) 263-2385705 Los Esteros Road (in the outskirts of Alviso)Hours: M-F, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Newby Island Landfill(408) 432-1234Near Highway 880 and Dixon Landing Road (near the border of San Jose and Milpitas)Hours: M-Sat. 8 a.m.-4p.m.
Los Gatos Rental Dispute Resolution Programc/o Project Sentinel298 S. Sunnyvale Avenue #209Sunnyvale, CA 94086Tel: 408-402-0307 x16Fax: 408-720-9809
For your convenience we have highlighted some of the typical event-related town fees that you may incur when planning your event in town depending on the elements of your event. We have also highlighted other event-related fees not associated with the Town that you may want to consider when planning your event budget.
TOWN RELATED EVENT COSTS
For a full list of fees please see the Town’s Comprehensive Fee Schedule. Please note that these fees will be adjusted annually by the average consumer price index for the calendar year and/or by the percentage increase in actual operating costs for the current year – whichever is greater.
Special Event Application Processing Fee
Temporary Sign Permit
Parks Special Use Permit
$95 - $150
Oak Meadow Bandstand
$65 - $150
Town Plaza Park Use
$55 per hour
Block Party Permit
$279.00 and up
Police On-Site Staff Support
Actual cost per hour
No Parking Signs
Non-Town Event Related Costs
Costs for these items are not specified as they will vary greatly depending on the vendor the organizer chooses to use. However, these are other items you should consider budgeting for when planning an event in Los Gatos.
All special event applications require the submission of a site diagram. A Site Diagram should include the following:
Consider the following in your planning: Impedance of emergency fire, police, or paramedic vehicles. Conflict with public transportation such as buses, shuttles, and trains. Interference with people trying to reach hotels, the airport, residences, businesses, places of worship, and public facilities. If your event involves road closures, please see the road closure related FAQs for further, detailed, important information.
An event timeline is required with the special event application. The event timeline should include as much information as possible at the time of the submission such as, equipment delivery/pick-up times, set-up/tear-down times of specific equipment, volunteer/staff arrival/departure times, event activities, etc. Typically, an excel format is best. We understand that this detailed of information may not be available at the time you submit your application, but we recommend submitting any information you have so that the Event Specialist may be aware of the elements of your event and inform you of any additional permits or requirements needed as a result of those elements. A more detailed timeline should be submitted closer to the event date.
Events with amplified sound, large crowds, street closures, and/or other elements which may otherwise inconvenience the surrounding businesses and residents require neighborhood notification. The event organizer must provide notice to businesses and residences typically within a 500-foot radius of the event location depending on the scope of the event, at least 2 weeks prior to the event. The organizer must include in the notification the time, location, type of event and anticipated noise or traffic disturbances. Notifications can be in the form of a letter, flyer or postcard or other documentation. The organizer must provide the Town Events Specialist with a copy of the notification prior to distribution for approval.
Per the Special Events Municipal code, Sec. 14.100.010, the organizer may not advertise their event until the organizer has received a Conditional Letter of Approval from the Town. To place banners advertising the event in town the organizer must apply for a Temporary Sign Permit through the Community Development Department. The Temporary Sign application can be found here. Posters in private businesses are permitted if the organizer has received written or verbal approval from the business owner.
If the event requires the use of a Town park such as Town Plaza Park, Oak Meadow Park, Civic Center Plaza or any other Town-owned park the organizer must indicate this in their special event application. The organizer is responsible for paying for any park use fees as indicated in the Town’s Comprehensive Fee Schedule, in addition to the special event application fee and all other town related costs. The organizer must also abide by all regulations set-forth in the Town’s Facilities Use Policy. Among these policies, all events held in a public park must be open to the public and cannot restrict access. The Events Specialist will work with the Parks and Public Works Department to reserve the requested park as part of your special event application.
In addition to the park use fee, a refundable deposit may be required depending on the nature of your event to account for any possible damage that could be done to the park grounds. A post-event site evaluation will be done by a member of the Parks and Public Works department to determine if any damage occurred as a result of the event. If it is found that damage was done to any of the facilities or additional clean-up is needed this will be documented and the event organizer will be billed at full cost recovery rates for cleanup and repair.
For smaller park events such as children’s parties, organized recreational activities or classes that are contained entirely within a park and do not meet the other Special Events requirements, a Parks Special Use permit may be required. In these cases, the applicant may work directly with the Parks and Public Works department by visiting https://www.losgatosca.gov/1084/Park-Reservations-Permits-Fees.
Event organizers are required to provide a safe and secure environment for their event. This is accomplished through solid pre-planning and anticipating potential problems and concerns. The size, type, time of day, and location of the event as well as overall activities, are all factors that need to be analyzed by the Town when determining whether your event will need uniformed security.
Each special event application will be reviewed by the Town to determine if security is required. Events having the potential to draw a large crowd, such as street fairs or concerts, and include the consumption of alcohol are likely to require security. If security is deemed necessary for an event, the Town will require either private security or the Los Gatos Monte-Sereno Police Department (LGMSPD). If LGMSPD staff is required, the applicant is responsible for paying the hourly rate for each officer to the Town of Los Gatos. A minimum of two LGMS Police Officers at four hours is required. The Event Specialist will include those estimated costs in the estimated Town fees provided to the organizer prior to the event.
If additional LGMS Police Officers are needed on the day of the event due to larger than expected attendance or other factors, the organizer will be responsible for paying for those additional costs after the event. Organizers will not be billed for regular calls for service.
In cases where private security is being used they must meet the following criteria:
The organizer must submit the following pieces of information for approval of their requested security vendor. Please note that even if security is not required but the organizer wishes to use private security anyway, the company must still be approved.
For larger events the organizer is responsible for providing first aid onsite during the event. The first aid station must be indicated on the site map and a brief explanation of the first aid plan should be provided in the special event application. The first aid station should be staffed by qualified individuals trained and certified in basic first aid training.
Set-Up of Event
Event set-up must comply with the Los Gatos Municipal Code Sec. 16.20.010 and may not make, cause suffer or permit any noise disturbances within 100 feet of any building or place regularly used for sleeping purposes between the hours of 10:00 p.m. and 8:00 a.m., unless given specific approval from the Town. For events that occur over multiple days or set-up prior to 8:00 a.m. the organizer must submit a plan to the Town of Los Gatos Event Specialist and work with the Town to find the best option and location for set-up which causes minimal disturbance to the residents of Los Gatos. Event set-up cannot take place on an open roadway and cannot cause a roadway to be closed longer than the hours permitted by the Town.
Clean-Up of Event
The event organizer is responsible for leaving the event area and the immediate adjacent areas in the condition of which they were found prior to the event. Clean-up must occur immediately after the event and within a reasonable time frame as to not disrupt or prohibit the public from accessing the area in a timely manner. The organizer must provide a cleanup plan to the Town at least two weeks prior to the event that indicates 1) sufficient staff (paid or volunteer) to handle cleanup throughout the day and after the event; and 2) sufficient equipment placed in effective locations (dumpsters, trash receptacles, hot coal barrels, and grease barrels). The Town does not provide street sweeping services for special events unless specifically requested by the organizer. In those cases, the organizer shall pay the hourly rate as indicated in the current fee schedule. Should the event organizer fail to perform adequate clean up or damage occurs to Town property and facilities, the organizer will be billed at full cost recovery rates for cleanup and repair. In addition, such failure may result in a denial of future approval for a Special Event Permit or the requirement of a cash deposit or surety bond for future events.
The organizer shall be responsible for providing adequate portable toilets at their event. The organizer must submit a portable toilet plan to the Town two weeks prior to their event by indicating the location and number of toilets on their site/route diagram. If the toilets are placed anywhere outside of the permitted event hours or location an encroachment permit may be required. See section 10 for more information on encroachment permits.
The Santa Clara County Department of Health Services recommends one (1) chemical toilet for every 250 people, or portion thereof. The figure is based upon the maximum number of people at your event during peak time. A percentage of disabled accessible toilets will also be required. For events providing food, the Santa Clara County Department of Environmental Health (SCCDEH) requires 1 portable toilet and one hand wash station for every 15 food service workers. The SCCDEH may have additional requirements that the event organizer must comply with if the event is required to obtain a permit from them.
When determining how many portable toilets will be needed for an event the organizer should consider the number of people attending, the length of the event and what type of food and drink will be sold or served. For events where alcohol will be present an additional 15%-20% of portable toilets should be added to the calculation. The chart below may serve as a guide in planning.
When holding an event in a Town park, public park toilets may be used. However, the organizer will be required to provide their own staff to service the park toilets during the event or may be required to pay for the Town’s Parks & Public Works staff to service the restrooms if the event is outside of their normal working hours.
The organizer may not direct attendees to use private restrooms unless already agreed up with the business owner prior to the event. Authorized placement locations for portable toilets and trash receptacles will be determined by the Town for each event. For more information on DEH requirements please visit: www.sccgov.org/sites/deh
The event organizer must properly recycle and dispose of waste throughout the term of the event and the area must be returned to its original condition immediately upon conclusion of the event. The event organizer is responsible for providing additional trash and recycling receptacles to accommodate all waste generated from the event.
The event organizer is responsible for event specific garbage and recycling as well as public, Town-owned trash and recycling receptacles throughout the duration and after the event. The organizer must provide a place to store the full waste bags during the event, such as a dumpster.
Dumpsters must be placed in an approved location and may be delivered 1-2 days prior to the event and removed 1-2 days after the event if needed. If the dumpster is blocking parking spaces or any other public area outside of the permitted event area or hours an encroachment permit may be required from the Town. See "What is an encroachment permit?" in these FAQs for more information.
If using a Town facility or park where there may be existing electric power access, it is the responsibility of the organizer to indicate in their application that they would like to use the power so the Events Specialist can coordinate with the Parks and Public Works Department to ensure the power will be available for access on the event date. If the organizer needs to access private electric power sources it is the responsibility of the organizer to request access from the property owner. When the organizer does not have access to power they may use a generator and may need to obtain a fire inspection permit from the Santa Clara County Fire Department.
The organizer may not use any public water access points and must receive the property owner’s approval if using private water sources. If the organizer has any event equipment, such as portable restrooms, that require electrical or water access and it is not available the organizer must use a self-contained system.
An encroachment permit is required from Parks & Public Works Engineering division for special events when the organizer wishes to place any event equipment on any public property such as a street, sidewalk or parking lot outside of the permitted event hours and locations that have been approved in the Special Event Conditional Letter of Approval. Examples include, portable restrooms, dumpsters, etc. that are placed on a public street or lot prior to the event date. The organizer should fill out an encroachment permit application and turn it in to the Event Specialist who will work with engineering on their behalf to obtain an approved permit. The specialist will also include the encroachment permit cost in the estimate and the final invoice to the organizer.
The encroachment permit application and additional information can be found at: https://www.losgatosca.gov/2342/Encroachment-Permits
The sale or furnishing of alcoholic beverages at a public event will require an additional permit from the State Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC). The applicant MUST obtain a Letter of Authorization from the Chief of Police to ABC before they will issue an ABC permit (30-day process). This application can be found at https://www.losgatosca.gov/2439/Special-Events-Information. The Organizer may submit this application along with their special event application to the Town Event Specialist for signature from the Chief. The Town Event Specialist will return the signed ABC Letter of Authorization to the organizer upon approval of the event so that the organizer may move forward with obtaining their alcohol permit from ABC.
All alcohol consumption during the event must stay within the permitted area and be clearly defined with barriers such as a beer garden area or road closure. Signs measuring a minimum of 11”x17” must be posted at all exits that read, “No Alcohol past this point.” Security or volunteer staff will also be required at all exits to ensure that alcohol does not leave the permitted area. Private security or LGMS Police Officers may be required based on the number of event attendees (see “What are the security guidelines for events?” in these FAQs). The organizer must provide the following information to the Event Specialist prior to submission of the Letter of Authorization application.
Hours of sale must be approved by the LGMS Police Department. Police may close the sale of alcohol at any time during the event if they determine that these controls are not being adhered to or in the interest of public safety. Please note that the ABC may also visit the event site to determine that their requirements are met. The organizer is responsible for training their event staff to identify when the alcohol should not be served to an individual who is intoxicated.
For more information visit www.abc.ca.gov or call (408) 277-1200.
If your event meets any criteria listed below the organizer may need to obtain a Special Events permit from the Santa Clara County Fire Department.
It is the responsibility of the organizer to work with the SCCFD to obtain any necessary fire permits. There may be additional costs and requirements required by the SCCFD that the organizer must comply with. You can review the outdoor carnivals and fairs specifications document at: http://www.sccfd.org/images/documents/fire_prevention/standards/2.4.6_outdoor_carnivals_and_fairs.pdf for more information.
The organizer must submit proof of the permit application to the Events Specialist prior to the event. This application can be found at https://www.losgatosca.gov/2439/Special-Events-Information. Please contact the SCCFD for additional information. At www.sccfd.org or (408) 378-4010.
Events in which food will be cooked and/or served or sold to the public require a Temporary Event Permit from the Santa Clara County Department of Environmental Health. The organizer is responsible for applying for this permit and it must be submitted to the Town, along with all other applicable permits, at least two weeks before the event. Temporary events usually consist of one or more food booths/operations, also known as temporary food facilities (TFF). It is the responsibility of the Santa Clara Department of Environmental Health to review all TFFs to ensure the protection and food safety of the public.
Organizers may not use Town water access points for food booths or hand wash stations. The organizer may use private water access points if given written permission from the property owner prior to the event.
You can find more information about the costs and requirements for a temporary event permit at, https://www.sccgov.org/sites/cpd/programs/TE/Pages/home.aspx or by contacting the Santa Clara County Department of Environmental Health at (408) 918-3400.
Organizers should always consider parking in their event planning. Organizers should describe their plans for parking in the special event application and indicate these areas on the site map. If any of those parking accommodations include private properties, the organizer must work with the property owner to receive approval to use their property. If using Los Gatos High School as overflow parking, you must obtain a permit from Los Gatos-Saratoga Joint Union High School District: www.lgsuhsd.org or (408) 335-2000.
Events that include road closures are typically much more complex in nature due to the high level of safety precautions that must be taken, planning and potential inconvenience to the public and businesses. All events wishing to close any public right-of-ways such as roads, sidewalks, parking lots, etc. must indicate this in their special event application. Each request will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by Town staff.
Please read the following FAQ topics in these FAQs for further information on road closures.
All organizers requesting to close any portion of a street for their event must do the following:
In many cases it is also recommend that the organizer provide first aid such as through an organization like D.A.R.T as well as volunteers to help monitor closure points and/or race marshals in the case of runs, cycling races, etc.
There are three levels of road closures:
Please note that each road closure request will be evaluated on a case by case basis and other factors such as time of year or anticipated event volume may also be factored into determining the level of closure.
Due to the size and nature of a N. Santa Cruz closure, these requests must seek special approval and are limited to a certain number per year.
A traffic control plan (TCP) is a detailed plan including a map of the requested closure area and the placement, number and type of all traffic control equipment necessary to provide the safe and efficient movement of vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrians through or around temporary traffic control zones. A TCP is typically designed by a certified traffic control engineer. For level one road closures the organizer may create their own TCP. The information below will guide the organizer in creating their TCP. A preliminary TCP must be submitted with the special event application with a final TCP required at least 45 days prior to their event. The TCP must be reviewed by the Town’s traffic engineer and the Los Gatos Monte Sereno Police Department.
Submitted Traffic Control Plans shall include the following:
Any closure of public right-of-ways will require the use of Uniform Traffic Control equipment, these may include physical barriers (cones and barricades), traffic signs, lights, and more, to ensure public safety. The organizer will be responsible for obtaining their own equipment as the Town does not provide these. Implementation of the road closure and re-opening will be determined by the Town based on the complexity and level of the closure. If a Traffic Control Company is required to implement the closure the organizer is responsible for those costs. A list of traffic control vendors can be provided if needed.
For information about how to safety conduct an environmentally-friendly car washing event, contact the West Valley Clean Water Program (WVCWP) to receive a free Car Wash Kit and training at email@example.com.