Marin Local Agency Formation Commission

Planning Agency / Subdivision of the State of California

  • Protecting Against Urban Sprawl

    Urban sprawl can best be described as irregular and disorganized growth occurring without apparent design or plan. This pattern of development is characterized by the inefficient delivery of urban services (police, fire, water, and sanitation) and the unnecessary loss of agricultural resources and open space lands.
  • Local Organization

    LAFCO must consider the effect that any proposal will produce on existing agricultural lands. By guiding development toward vacant urban land and away from agricultural preserves, LAFCO assists with the preservation of our valuable agricultural resources.
  • Community Coordination

    Marin LAFCO (Local Agency Formation Commission) is responsible for reviewing proposals for the formation of new local governmental agencies and for changes in the organization of existing agencies.
  • Preparing Studies

    Marin LAFCO is responsible for regularly preparing studies to independently assess the relationship between service demands and community needs.
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Muir Beach Area Service Review and Sphere of Influence Update


Marin Local Agency Formation Commission

October 2007

Peter Banning, Executive Officer - Evelyn Ellis, Assistant Planner - Candice Bozzard, Commission Clerk

165 North Redwood Drive, Suite 160 San Rafael, California 94903


The staff of Marin LAFCO gratefully acknowledges the time and effort of the County of Marin, the Bolinas Fire Protection District, and Bolinas Community Public Utility District who provided information and insight during the preparation of this report.


This report is presented as part of a process mandated by Sections 56425 and 56430 of the Cortese-Knox-Hertzberg Local Government Reorganization Act of 2000. As stated in that section, “In order to carry out its purposes and responsibilities for planning and shaping the logical and orderly development and coordination of local government agencies so as to advantageously provide for the present and future needs of the county and its communities, the Local Agency Formation Commission shall develop and determine the sphere of influence of each local governmental agency within the county.” As used in this section, “sphere of influence” means a plan for the probable physical boundaries and service area of a local government agency.

In determining a sphere of influence, the Commission is required to consider and make written findings with respect to the following factors:

  • The present and planned land uses in the area, including agricultural and open space lands.
  • The present and probable need for public facilities and services in the area.
  • The present capacity of public facilities and adequacy of public services which the agency provides or is authorized to provide.
  • The existence of any social or economic communities of interest in the area if the commission determines they are relevant to the agency.

Changes to State law effective on January 1, 2001 require LAFCOs to study the service relationships between agencies providing municipal services within different sub-regions in each county prior to the periodic review of adopted spheres of influence. In this report, discussion of service review determinations required by Section 56430 precedes recommendations for the sphere of influence of the public agency under study, the Marin Healthcare District.

The actual effect of these or any other adopted spheres of influence will be to provide LAFCO and local communities with policy guidance on matters relating to the boundaries and organization of local government agencies. In short, the purpose of the Commission’s sphere determinations is to answer the question, “What local agencies should provide which services to what geographical area as communities change?” More information on LAFCO and on all of Marin County’s local governments, services and boundaries may be found on the Commission’s website at


Description of Community

The unincorporated residential community of Muir Beach is located in the southwestern part of Marin County. It is bounded on the west by the Pacific Ocean, on the east by Highway 1, and on the north and south by Federal park land under the Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA). The main access is through Highway 1.

Description of District

The Muir Beach Community Services District (MBCSD) was formed in 1958 under Section 61600 and 61601 et seq. of the California Government Code.

The district is responsible for water distribution, supply and treatment; road and access easement maintenance; recreation and assists the Muir Beach Volunteer Fire Department in the provision of supplemental fire protection service. A five- member Board of Directors, elected at-large, governs the MBCSD. A District Manager is responsible for administrative functions.

The MBCSD is located within the community of Muir Beach and encompasses approximately 820 acres. The District’s service area includes the Muir Beach residential area, Green Gulch Zen Center agricultural lands, Pelican Inn, and public lands of GGNRA (including Muir Beach). Facilities operated by the District include water wells, storage and distribution system, a community center and pedestrian trails. The MBCSD’s boundaries and sphere of influence are coterminous. A map of the MBCSD boundaries and its coterminous sphere of influence is shown on the following page.

Water System

The purpose for the District’s formation in 1958 was to take over the assets of the Muir Beach Water Company, which had been formed in 1928 to furnish water to the original Bello Beach Subdivision. In 1970, the District acquired the assets of the Seacape Mutual Water Company, which served the Seacape Subdivision properties.

The Marin LAFCO directory provides a list of government agencies, board members and other important information and agency facts. The directory also includes links to interactive maps which disaply city limits, community boundaries and other highlighted features.


LAFCO Directory