Create an Account - Increase your productivity, customize your experience, and engage in information you care about.
Show All Answers
You can help the City by reporting the location of abandoned carts. These are several ways to report abandoned carts:
1. Call Customer Service Hotline (831) 768-3133
2. e-mail location to email@example.com
Please call our main office at (831) 768-3050 during business hours to report illegal construction activity. You may also file a complaint online 24 hours a day, seven days a week by visiting our website and filled out the
Because construction and demolition materials are a significant and growing part of landfill waste in California, the City of Watsonville and the California Green Business Standards Code require recycling of at least 65% of materials generated at construction and demolition projects. The City has developed the Construction Waste Management Plan in order to help contractors meet the requirement.
For more information, click
Yes. The number and types of cannabis businesses allowed in the City are outlined below:
* Non-storefront delivery permits may only be obtained as an add-on permit to a permitted cultivation, manufacturing, or processing facility in good standing within the City of Watsonville.
No. Because of COVID-19 Shelter in Place Orders, the Community Development Department is not open to the public. All applications are required to be submitted via mail. Applications must be postmarked by 4:00 p.m. Thursday, October 1, 2020.
The City will only accept payment by certified check, cashier’s check, or money order made payable to The City of Watsonville.
Please send your application and payment to:
City of Watsonville
Community Development Department
250 Main Street
Watsonville, CA 95076
Yes. We have a utility payment drop box behind our building on Union Street in which you may drop off your application if you do not want to put it in the mail. The utility payment drop box is checked by staff daily. Be sure to address the application to the Community Development Department.
There are separation requirements for all cannabis facilities. The table is listed below:
* Separation distance from K-12 schools shall be measured from property line to property line. Separation distance for cultivation facilities shall be measured from parcel line of sensitive use to nearest wall of cultivation facility. Separation distance for all other cannabis facilities shall be measured by path of travel from nearest parcel line of sensitive use to the front door of the facility. Separation distance from K-12 schools shall be measured from property line to property line.
You must submit an application for a Zoning Verification Letter to determine whether the potential business location meets ordinance requirements, including required separation from sensitive uses.
To download an application for a Zoning Verification Letter, click here.
The separation requirements are different for cultivation, processing, distribution, testing, manufacturing, and retail sales of cannabis. Maps showing potentially eligible cannabis facility locations are listed below. Please note that determination of eligibility can only be obtained through a Zoning Verification Letter.
Pre-Application. All applicants must submit a Pre-Application during the identified application period on forms provided by the City. A physical location is not required to be identified during the Pre-Application process, but will focus on the qualifications of the applicant team, general security requirements, and operations plan, among other things.
Interview. The City will interview up to 3 more applicants than the number of available permits for each business category. The applicants invited to interview will be those with the most competitive Pre-Application package. Business invited to interview must pay the additional interview fee within 5 business days of notification of interview.
Conditional Use Permit. The most competitive applicants after the interviews will be invited to apply for a Conditional Use Permit to establish a cannabis business. The applicant will have 6 months to secure a physical location and obtain approval of all required local and state permits.
The City will only accept applications for cannabis permits during specific application periods.
The revised ordinance only requires background checks for owners and managers.
Background checks will be conducted through a third party consultant during the pre-application process. The fee for each individual is $300 and paid directly to the third party. The entire process is completed online through a secure portal. Those applicants invited to apply for Conditional Use Permits must then submit for Live Scan background checks.
Yes, all owners, managers and employees must be issued an identification badge from the Police Department, in accordance with WMC Section 14-53.208. No owner, manager or employee shall engage in any activities associated with a cannabis business without first obtaining a valid identification badge.
The Live Scan process involves submitting fingerprints to the DOJ, which will review for criminal offender record information (CORI). CORI reports will be provided to the City of Watsonville for the sole purpose of determining eligibility for operating a cannabis facility. Those who do not meet criminal history eligibility requirements will be disqualified.
To download a request for Live Scan form, please click here.
Here are the steps for obtaining an identification badge:
The fees for the cannabis application process are:
The City of Watsonville adopted an ordinance to mitigate the barriers to equity within the commercial cannabis market place for populations that have been negatively or disproportionally impacted by cannabis criminalization and for pursuing aid from compassionate cannabis care programs. The ordinance can be found here. Equity applicants are those that have submitted documentation to the City in compliance with the Equity Ordinance that prove that they have been negatively impacted by cannabis criminalization and from pursuing compassionate care programs.
In order to qualify as an equity applicant or equity business, please refer to the application for equity status.
One permit from each cannabis business category is set aside for equity applicants, so that equity applicants will only be competing against other equity applicants for that license. Equity applicants are exempt from paying application fees. However, any fees associated with Live Scan or background checks are the responsibility of the equity applicant.
Cannabis Use Permits are not transferrable. They are issued to a business entity and do not run with the land. If a Cannabis Use Permit is surrendered or revoked, the City may open up an application period for applicants to apply for that permit.
The City requires a modification of your Use Permit anytime there is a change in ownership of the business.
The revised ordinance allows cultivation on up to 2 parcels, up to 22,000 square feet in area. If the expanded cultivation area or property will be financed with new investors or a new ownership structure, a new Use Permit will be required. If you are proposing to expand using the same ownership structure and investment group, a Minor Modification to your existing Use Permit will be required.
The non-storefront delivery permits will only be processed during the application period and will be competitive. Permits for non-storefront delivery for existing cultivation/manufacturing businesses will be through a Minor Modification application if the same ownership and financing structure are to be used as the existing cannabis business.
For new manufacturing/cultivation/and or processing businesses that are applying for a permit during the application period, the application must indicate all permits being applied for.
Yes. A permit application fee is required for each type of cannabis business.
Contact Customer Service at (831) 768-3133 and your bin will be picked up at no charge. The $10 fee is non-refundable. The compost bin is property of the City of Watsonville.
Composting is a natural, biological process that recycles organic materials such as food scraps, leaves and yard trimmings into a rich (fertile, dark, sweet smelling) soil-like material called compost or humus (pronounced hyu, like you.) It improves the health of both soils and plants when added to the garden or indoor plants.
Materials like vegetable and fruit scraps, eggshells, coffee grinds, tea bags and much more can be placed in a container to decompose. Almost anything that is organic material and not animal based is a good candidate for composting.
This is a voluntary program for residents who want to participate in diverting food scraps from the landfill and instead composting in their own backyard.
These funds will cover training and delivery services provided
Composting makes a valuable soil amendment. Through this process of decomposition, food scraps and yard trimmings remain as beneficial natural resources instead of becoming wastes, and entering the waste stream. Our food comes from nature, so better to put it back where it came from. In nature, the concept of waste does not exist!
According to the EPA, 30% of household waste is food. This can be composted instead of throwing it away in the garbage can
The property owner is responsible for property maintaining this area (see City of Watsonville Municipal Code Title 7 Chapter 2). This responsibility includes maintenance of damaged or displaced concrete, abatement of weeds or debris, and the maintenance of trees and shrubs whether on private or public property. Replace and trimming of street trees and shrubs is further governed by the Parks & Community Services Department.
The owner of property adjoining a sidewalk area is liable for injuries caused by that owner's failure to maintain the sidewalk area in a safe condition (see City of Watsonville Municipal Code on sidewalks, Title 7 chapter 2.)
Visibility - When parkway strip shrubbery interferes with vehicle operator visibility, trimming to a maximum height of thirty inches is required. Thirty (30) inches maximum height, 25 feet minimum sight distance at corners).
Walkway and Gutter Clearance - Trimming of ground cover or shrubs is required when there is an encroachment onto the sidewalk or gutter and must clear seven ft. (7'+) over the sidewalk.
Obstacles in the Parkway Strip - Elimination of tree stumps, large rocks, trash, holes, and some built-up planters is required. When the parkway strip is unimproved or landscaped and there is a drop, the parkway strip must be filled with dirt or other material (no asphalt) to eliminate tripping hazards.
Repair of the sidewalk concrete is required in the following circumstances:
Curb and gutter repair is required in the following circumstances:
Construction of curbs, gutters, and sidewalks in City streets may be performed by a "C8" or "A" licensed and insured contractor. A permit is required for concrete repair, and will be issued to licensed contractors for a fee by Community Development. You can also enter into a contract with Public Works to have the repairs made with a 12-month interest free loan.
With technology, you can now search the internet for local contractors or you can look in the yellow pages of the phone book. The "C8" or "A" licensed contractor selected must secure a concrete construction permit from Community Development.
Yes, all work and materials must be in conformance with the City of Watsonville Standard Specifications for Public Works Construction and Parks and Recreation ISA Standards.
Before placing any concrete you must have the forms, base, tree root removal, and saw cuts inspected. After approval, a City-approved concrete mix must be used. Finish must be a light brook finish with score marks to match the existing sidewalk. After the work is completed, you must call for a final inspection. A permit is required for all concrete work in the public right-of-way. To obtain a permit or arrange an inspection, call (831) 768-3110.
In an effort to beautify our City's neighborhoods, street trees are encouraged in front of each residence. The property owner is responsible for the maintenance of the street tree and for the cost of concrete repair, even though the concrete may have been raised by the street tree. Certain species of trees may raise concrete if preventative maintenance is not performed.
In extreme cases, street trees cannot be saved and must be removed before the sidewalk and/or curb and gutter can be replaced. City standards require replacement of the tree, to be selected from a list of approved street trees. Proper tree selection is critical and is reviewed by the City Arborist. The tree permit process in these cases must be pursued before a concrete permit can be issued. Tree permits are issued by the Public Works Director. Tree work permitting is governed by Chapter 7-11.
To reduce the chance of future concrete displacement, trees can be root-pruned and a root barrier installed. Care must be taken when root pruning to avoid damaging underground utilities.
Also deep-watering the tree, that is, applying a slow trickle of water over a 24-hour period, encourages deeper root growth which reduces the chance of sidewalk damage.
No, applicants should complete the online application using the link on the Human Resources page or on the Jobs page. If an applicant prefers not to complete the online application, you may complete the pdf application and submit it by mail, fax, in person, or as a .pdf attachment sent to Human Resources via email to the email address listed on the application. If you submitted your application using the online application, please do not also submit a pdf application.
Applicants should complete the online application found on the Human Resources and Jobs page. Applicants may also download a pdf application if that is preferred and must be submitted by mail, in person or emailed to the email address on the application. Employment applications are available at the City’s Human Resources counter during regular business hours (Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.). Make sure your application is received by the filing deadline to qualify for consideration. Postmarks are not accepted. If you have submitted your application online, please do not also submit a pdf application.
The job openings are updated as new jobs become available. You are encouraged to check the weekly current openings by checking the City's Human Resources Job's page.
Unfortunately, due to the high volume of applications we receive, we are only able to keep your application on file for the specific position for which you applied. If you advance far enough in the selection process you may be placed on an “Employment List” which may be used if an opening in the same job classification becomes available within one year of recruitment. However, this list may be abolished at any time if the needs of the City so require.
Once the recruitment has closed, the City will evaluate the applications and determine which applicants will move forward to the next step in the hiring process. Those selected to move forward will usually be contacted by phone within three weeks of the recruitment closing date. Those not chosen to move forward will receive a letter in the mail. Due to the high volume of applications we receive, the City is currently unable to send status updates to everyone who applies for a job. You may contact the Human Resources Department at 831-768-3020 to inquire about the status of your application.
If an ILL item is damaged or lost, there is usually a fee charged to the patron. This fee is determined by the lending library on a case-by-case basis.
Please call us with any questions. Stephanie Barraza is our Outreach Librarian and can be reached at 831-768-3418.
Here’s a link to a 2019 Study that analyzed the Municipal Airport’s economic benefit.
The City works regularly with the help of several volunteer groups to keep the slough and river trails free of litter and debris. In the summer of 2018, Measure D funds will be utilized to regrade or repave the trails in a few key locations.
Although the City does not prohibit boating in the sloughs, it discourages it in order to protect the wetland habitat and its wildlife.
Note: For sections of the wetlands on the west side of the highway, the public must obtain permission from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to enter.
You may make an appointment with a Planner by directly contacting a Planner 24 hours in advance or stopping by during drop-in counter hours. Drop-in counter hours are 1:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. Over the counter permit processing is on Wednesdays from 7:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. The counter is closed during lunchtime from 12 to 1:30 p.m.
The Zoning Clearance is the procedure the City uses to determine whether a business meets the zoning requirements for a particular location and to approve the establishment of the business use at that location. The Zoning Clearance is a one-time clearance with a one-time fee to establish a business at a specific location.
The Zoning Clearance process gives the Planning Division an opportunity to verify that a proposed land use is allowed in the applicable zoning district and that the use complies with the development standards of the Zoning Ordinance. When a Zoning Clearance is requested, a staff planner reviews the business description and location and determines if the proposed use is principally permitted, subject to a Use Permit, or prohibited. The planner also reviews the proposed use for consistency with previous permits that may have been issued on the property.
Yes, the planner at the public counter can process a Business License application concurrently with your Zoning Clearance payment.
The City requires any food truck to obtain a Traveling Merchant Permit from the Watsonville Police Department to operate within the city limits. For more information on permit requirements, please read this memorandum on the matter.
Contact the Planning Division to find out what the Assessor Parcel Number is for your property. An Assessor Parcel Number is a unique parcel identification number assigned by Santa Cruz County to each parcel of record.
Fencing is not required in residential zoning districts but may be required in non-residential zoning districts. Review Part 14 (Fence Permits) of Chapter 14-12 (Zoning Permits) for Watsonville Municipal Code standards for fencing, including required setback from property lines, maximum height, and types of material allowed. Pursuant to Section 14-12.1400 and Section 14-32.020, and a Fence Permit is required for all fences constructed within the City of Watsonville in accordance with the design standards in Chapter 14-32 (Fences). A building permit is required for all fences greater than seven feet in height (where allowed).
Allowable home-based businesses are required to file a Home Occupation Permit application and a Business License application. A home occupation permit allows for business-related activities deemed to cause minimal impact(s) on neighboring parcels. Review the Chapter 14-12.1100 (Home Occupation Permit) for more information on home occupation permits.
A pre-application review process is recommended prior to the formal application of a development application. For a listing of associated fees, please review the Planning Fee Schedule. The cost of the pre-application is credited toward the formal application for the project.
Individuals may discuss proposals in person with a Planner at the Permit Center. For more information, contact the Planning Division at (831)768-3050 or firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Plans are available for review at the Community Development Department. Interested individuals are welcome to contact the Planning Division at (831)768-3050 or email@example.com, or stop by to speak to the project planner regarding the proposed project.
You will need a sign permit, in addition to applicable building permits. For more information, please refer to Chapter 8-6 of the Watsonville Municipal Code or contact the Permit Center at (831) 768-3050.
Yes, a banner requires a permit and is only permitted on a temporary basis, limited up to four times a year, not to exceed a total of 30 days in a calendar year. Applications are available here.
Density represents the number of dwelling units per net acre of land. Dwelling units include all residential units having sleeping, eating, cooking, and bathroom facilities, including single-family homes, mobile homes, townhouses, condominiums, duplexes (and other "plexes"), and apartment units. Net land area is calculated by taking gross acreage and subtracting undevelopable lands (e.g., wetlands) and the area in rights-of-way for streets and roads.
Floor area ration (FAR) represents the total gross square footage of a building or structure, but not including any area within the building utilized for off-street parking. FAR is used to place a limit on the overall size of a building in square feet relative to the size of a lot. The total square footage of building area allowed on a lot is determined by multiplying the FAR by the square footage of the lot on which the building is located. This diagram illustrates the same floor area for a one, two and four story building on a lot with a maximum FAR of 1.
The registered owner of the vehicle must be present with a valid driver license or with a valid ID and accompanied with someone with a valid driver license.
Vehicle registration must be valid. If registration is incomplete, a DMV Moving Permit will be required. The Vehicle Release Fee is $186.
Call dispatch at 831-471-1151 or request to speak to an officer at the
Call Assistant Administrative Analyst Angelica Jauregui 831-768-3386 and she will explain the process to you.
Entertainment Permits: 5-9.02 WMC requires anyone having an event with entertainment (as defined in WMC 5-09.01) open to the Public or at a private club, must obtain a permit from the WPD 30 days prior to the event. You can obtain an Entertainment Permit application from Watsonville Police Department Records division. The cost is $150.
Sound Permits: 5-34.01 WMC are required when using any sound amplifying device within the city limits on public or private property. In most cases the permits are valid till 10 p.m., but the sound must not disturb the peace of neighbors or businesses nearby.
You can apply for a permit by obtaining a Sound Permit application from the Watsonville Police Department Records division. The cost is currently $200.
Contact Enforcement Technology at 866-449-7581 or you can look up your citation via the
There is no application fee.
○ Prohibited sales and use of plastic foam (Styrofoam) products. This includes all food service ware, as well as coolers, containers, ice chests, shipping boxes, pool or beach toys, packing peanuts or other packaging materials, etc.
○ Prohibited use and distribution of straws, unless specifically requested. No straws provided shall be wrapped in plastic.
○ Required $0.10 customer charge for single-use cups to encourage the use of reusable cups and bottles. Customers with EBT and WIC cards are exempt from the charge.
○ Charges for single-use cups shall be clearly identified pre-sale for the customer on any ordering platforms and identified separately on any post-sale receipt.
○ The $0.10 customer disposable cup charge goes directly back to the business
○ All disposable food-service ware (take-out and dine-in) is required to be compostable and clearly labeled with the BPI compostable logo (as defined by ASTM standards).
○ Self-bussing food service vendors must provide three color-coded bins clearly labeled for food scraps + compostables (green), recyclables (blue), and garbage (black).
Beginning January 1, 2021, all disposable foodware products must be certified compostable as defined by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) or as defined by the City of Watsonville’s Organics (food scraps) processing contract for disposal. When you buy a product labeled "compostable," look for the BPI compostable logo, this has been certified ASTM. To learn more and/or to find certified compostable food-service ware products that meet ordinance requirements visit this site https://bpiworld.org/ or click here.
As of August 8, 2019, it is prohibited the sale and use of all plastic foam (Styrofoam) foodware. After January 1, 2021, disposable plastic food-service ware products are prohibited for take-out and dine-in. This includes, but not limited to: all food containers, clamshells, bowls, plates, trays, cartons, cups, lids, straws, stirrers, forks, spoons, knives, and other items designed for one (1) time use for prepared foods, including, without limitation, service ware for eat-in and take-out foods and/or leftovers from partially consumed meals prepared by food providers.
Check with your preferred local vendor to see if they carry these products. If not, encourage your vendor to carry them. Below is a list of nearby vendors that sell certified compostable foodware and other products that meet ordinance requirements. Remember to ask for the BPI Compostable logo. To find other certified compostable food-service ware products that meet ordinance requirements visit this site https://bpiworld.org/ or click here.
Yes, this ordinance applies to all food service providers, meaning any business, vendor, organization, entity, group or individual, including retail food establishments, located in the City of Watsonville that offers food or beverages to the public.
Compostable food service ware may go into the food scraps or garbage bin (never in the recycling bin). If your business or event does not have food scrap collection, please contact Customer Service at 768-3133 to get this program set up.
All compostable foodservice ware should be disposed of in the food scrap (organics) bin and never in the recycling bin. The City then collects and transports it to the Monterey Regional Waste Management where it will be processed for industrial composting. This is why it is critical that all compostable items meet the ASTM-BPI standard. Look for the BPI logo. If your business does not have food scrap collection, then compostable foodware may be thrown in the garbage.
The $0.10 customer disposable cup charge goes directly back to the business.
This charge is to help change consumer behavior towards bringing reusable cups since single-use cups create unnecessary waste and pollute our environment. This charge is also to support the businesses in moving over to the more sustainable option of compostable cups (and food service ware in general).
No. All of the customer cup charges go directly back to the business.
Yes! It is encouraged that customers choose re-usable options for many single-use items, including cups. This is a critical part of meeting the new challenges in the world of recycling and garbage. Fewer and fewer products are recyclable. Reducing single-use products also helps keep litter off the streets and from entering our storm drains which lead to our waterways. Additionally, it helps prevent carbon emissions which contribute to climate change. Every single-use product must be manufactured, shipped, and then disposed of which takes energy to produce and then to transport. By choosing reusable cups, bags, water bottles, and more supports efforts to reduce the impacts of climate change.
Yes, all customers demonstrating, at the point of sale, a payment card or voucher issued by the California Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), or an Electronic Benefit Transfer Card (EBT) are exempt from the single-use cup charge.
Foodservice providers will accept reusable cups for either hot or cold beverages. However, food providers may refuse any customer-provided reusable cup that is cracked, chipped, corroded, appears to be unsanitary or appears inappropriate in size, material, or condition for the intended beverage. In this case, a foodservice provider may require the use of a reusable cup for a beverage consumed on the premises, or a disposable cup that conforms to the compostable disposable cup standards. Foodservice providers are also encouraged, but not required, to accept reusable containers for take-out or leftovers.
The City of Watsonville will be working with the businesses during the transition. If a business does not show progress towards the ordinance after the enforcement period begins, the City of Watsonville may enforce the provisions of this chapter under Municipal Code Chapter 1-2.
We recognize that every business has different space constraints and limitations. The City of Watsonville offers assistance in getting your three-bin waste stream system set up so that you can successfully meet the requirements. Please contact Customer Service at 768-3131 to schedule a site visit.
For more information, please contact Public Works Customer Service at 768-3133.
This service is available for residents of the City of Watsonville only. Address verification will be required. Wastes generated outside Watsonville city limits are not accepted.The Waste and Recycling Drop-Off is open:9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.Monday - Saturday
First, you must fill out a MWH Permit Application form to obtain a permit and access code in order to enter the facility. See How to apply for a MWH Discharge Permit for instructions on what to expect
Allow a minimum of one week after submitting the permit application before a permit will be issued.
Domestic septage, chemical toilet, and restaurant grease are accepted discharges from mobile waste haulers permitted by the City of Watsonville. See Table X for the mobile waste hauler dumping fee schedule. Disposal of other liquid wastes by permitted haulers requires contacting Source Control for approval.
You must fill out a MWH Load Identification Report each time you discharge. The forms are provided at the gray storage sheds located at each receiving station.
For septic and chemical toilet dumping, the MWH will require a 3″, 4″, or 6″ male cam lock fitting on the truck to connect using the hoses at the septic receiving station
For grease dumping, the MWH will require a hose of approximately 15’ with a 3″ male cam lock fitting to connect the truck to the grease receiving station.
The City of Watsonville WWTF is open to permitted mobile waste haulers between 7:00 am to 4:30 pm daily, 7 days a week. Gate codes issued to permitted MWH’s will not activate the gate outside of those hours.
To renew your City of Watsonville MWH discharge permit, Use this link to the MWH discharge permit renewal form. Return the completed form with the required documentation to Source Control before the expiration of the current permit in order to keep the gate code active.
Call Customer Service at 768-3133 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
You can view your water rates in the