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Balancing Environment and Development

Balancing Environment and Development: Costs, Revenues, and Benefits of the Western Riverside County Multiple Species Habitat Conservation Plan

Lloyd Dixon
Paul Sorensen
Martin Wachs
Myles Collins
Mark Hanson
Aaron Kofner
Thomas Light
Michael Madsen
Lindell Marsh
Adrian Overton
Howard J. Shatz
Brian A. Weatherford
Copyright Date: 2008
Edition: 1
Published by: RAND Corporation
Pages: 270
  • Cite this Item
  • Book Info
    Balancing Environment and Development
    Book Description:

    The Western Riverside County Multiple Species Habitat Conservation Planmitigates development effects on 146 plant and animal species byestablishing a 500,000-acre conservation reserve. This monograph examinesland-acquisition strategies and costs, revenue adequacy and potential newfunding sources, the plan's habitat-conservation goals, and whether the planhas streamlined transportation and development permitting processes.

    eISBN: 978-0-8330-4824-0
    Subjects: Political Science, Transportation Studies

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-ii)
  2. Preface
    (pp. iii-iv)
  3. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-x)
  4. Figures
    (pp. xi-xii)
  5. Tables
    (pp. xiii-xvi)
  6. Summary
    (pp. xvii-xxxii)
  7. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xxxiii-xxxiv)
  8. Abbreviations
    (pp. xxxv-xxxviii)
  9. CHAPTER ONE Introduction
    (pp. 1-8)

    With increasing frequency across the country, population growth and development interests are colliding with environmental goals and regulations that protect threatened and endangered species’ habitats. Perhaps nowhere is this clash more evident than in western Riverside County, California—one of the fastest-growing metropolitan areas in the United States and the home of a diverse array of increasingly rare species. In the 1990s, policymakers in Riverside County found the regulatory process for reconciling environmental and development interests both ineffective and inefficient. Regulatory and legal systems slowed development projects and increased their costs. The required project-by-project mitigation for endangered-species impacts resulted in...

  10. CHAPTER TWO Value of Parcels Already Acquired by RCA
    (pp. 9-20)

    Estimating the current fair market value of parcels already acquired by RCA for conservation serves several ends. First, against the backdrop of an extremely volatile housing market, it provides RCA with a sense of how land values have changed during the period over which RCA has been assembling the reserve. Such information is helpful as RCA negotiates to purchase additional parcels. Second, once estimates of the land needed for the entire reserve are developed (as will be done in the following chapter), it allows projection of the funds needed to complete the reserve.

    To estimate the current value of RCA’s...

  11. CHAPTER THREE Value of Land Required for the MSHCP Reserve
    (pp. 21-50)

    In this chapter, we develop estimates for the market value (as of mid-2007) of the land that will be needed for the entire reserve. In the context of this chapter, the termreserve(orreserve assembly) refers to the additional 153,000 acres that RCA must assemble (including parcels that RCA has already acquired and parcels yet to be assembled—either through direct purchases or through developer transfers as part of the real estate–approval process), which, in turn, will complement the existing 350,000 acres of public land in western Riverside County to provide an overall conservation area of approximately 500,000...

  12. CHAPTER FOUR Financial Implications of Temporal Acquisition Strategies
    (pp. 51-70)

    In Chapter Three, we developed estimates of the cost of completing the reserve, given land values from mid-2007. The remaining required land will not be purchased all at once, however, and both the time frame in which the land is purchased and the future trajectory of land prices will determine the ultimate cost of assembling the reserve. In this chapter, we examine how such factors as the number of years over which RCA phases its purchases and the future trajectory of land values in the region affect total acquisition costs, expressed in terms of present value.

    RCA can control or...

  13. CHAPTER FIVE Costs of Implementing the MSHCP and Operating the Reserve
    (pp. 71-90)

    In this chapter, we forecast future RCA expenditures on habitat management, biological monitoring, and MSHCP implementation and oversight. The MSHCP implementation agreement requires that RCA pay for portions of the costs of implementing the plan and managing the reserve over the entire 75-year life of the plan.

    These costs are estimated using historical data on program expenditures and qualitative information elicited from subject-matter experts. We calculate a baseline cost estimate appropriate for planning purposes. We also identify a reasonable range over which the costs could vary because the future is highly uncertain and because many factors, such as how quickly...

  14. CHAPTER SIX Projected Revenue for RCA
    (pp. 91-108)

    RCA receives revenue from the local funding program (LFP) and uses it to fulfill the obligations of local permittees for reserve acquisition and reserve operation costs. Apart from the local funding sources, RCA also receives funds from federal and state entities. RCA uses these funds—mainly ESA Section 6 (Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund, or CESCF) grants—to acquire land to satisfy the federal and state obligations for reserve acquisition (56,000 out of 153,000 acres).

    This chapter describes the various sources of revenue for RCA and forecasts revenue for October 2007 through December 2079. It also examines revenue over the...

  15. CHAPTER SEVEN Additional Local Revenue Options
    (pp. 109-128)

    The analysis in the preceding chapters shows that the revenue sources currently in place for the MSHCP may not be sufficient to fund the local share of the reserve-assembly and operation costs. Current revenue streams may fall several billion dollars short of costs in present-value terms. In this chapter, we investigate different options for raising revenue from local sources. Ten options are considered, listed in Table 7.1.

    We begin by providing a brief review of the sources of funding for other HCPs. We then describe our approach for evaluating the 10 options for increasing local revenue for western Riverside County’s...

  16. CHAPTER EIGHT The MSHCP’s Effects on the Permitting Process for Transportation and Development Projects
    (pp. 129-160)

    An important expectation of the MSHCP is that it accelerate the permitting process for transportation and well as commercial-, industrial-, and residential-development projects in western Riverside County. In previous chapters, we have examined the costs of setting up and operating the reserve that the plan requires and the revenue sources to pay for it. In this chapter, we investigate the extent to which the MSHCP has, in fact, shortened the time needed to obtain the permits required to undertake road transportation and development projects. We examine the effects observed during the approximately four years since the MSHCP was adopted as...

  17. CHAPTER NINE Conclusion
    (pp. 161-168)

    Western Riverside County’s MSHCP is an ambitious effort intended both to streamline the approval process for transportation and development projects and to protect the habitat needed to support threatened and endangered species in a more coordinated way. This monograph has examined several issues related to the cost, revenue sources, and plan benefits. In this concluding chapter, we offer overall observations on the findings and identify issues that the RCA Board of Directors, RCA staff, and stakeholders should address moving forward.

    Our analysis shows that, as of mid-2007, the value of the land comprising a reserve of 153,000 acres was substantially...

  18. APPENDIX A Specification and Estimation of the Land-Value Model
    (pp. 169-178)
  19. APPENDIX B Examples of Simulated Land-Price Paths
    (pp. 179-182)
  20. APPENDIX C Revenue Sources for Existing Habitat-Conservation Plans
    (pp. 183-186)
  21. APPENDIX D Integrating Funding for Infrastructure Construction and Conservation
    (pp. 187-196)
  22. APPENDIX E The Effect of the MSHCP on Mobility in Western Riverside County
    (pp. 197-214)
  23. APPENDIX F Future Changes in the Permitting Process
    (pp. 215-224)
  24. References
    (pp. 225-232)