Forming a PRD


There are several steps to forming a PRD. It involves gathering community support, preparation of a formal boundary map, a petition, and Board of Supervisor’s approval. If the PRD intends to also request a ballot measure for a special tax for immediate improvements, an engineer’s report detailing scope and cost for the improvements is required. The County requests that the petition for formation and the request for a ballot measure for a special tax be combined (this streamlines the process and avoids multiple hearings before the County Board of Supervisors). 

Formation process

Step 1

The County recommends the local property owners assess the level of support for the creation of a PRD. If there is adequate interest, affected property owners shall establish an advisory committee (Committee) and appoint one person to act as a liaison with the County.

Step 2

The Committee will be responsible for preparation of the petition, which must include, at a minimum, a preliminary boundary map and a description of the location of any road to be improved or maintained. The formation documents should indicate whether the PRD is formed for a specific project, and/or for ongoing maintenance. To avoid confusion, the County also requests that the Committee submit a list of all properties within the PRD, which shall include the APNs, property address, and whether the property is improved or unimproved. The specific requirements for the petition are set forth in California Streets & Highway Code section 1162. The Committee should submit the draft petition and any other supporting documents to the Department of Public Works for review prior to obtaining signatures.

Step 3

The Committee must obtain an Affidavit of Valuations pursuant to California Streets & Highway Code section 1163. This may be obtained from the Assessor’s office at Assistant Assessor – Valuation at 415-473-7213. Exhibit C needs to be completed by the Assessor’s Office also.

Step 4

After the County has reviewed the petition and related documents and made any required revisions, the Committee should circulate the petition for signatures to the property owners. If the majority of the landowners, or owners of more than 50 percent of the assessed valuation of land within the proposed PRD, sign the petition then the Committee may submit the petition to the Department of Public Works. If the petition will also seek a ballot measure for a special tax, there are additional requirements set forth below.

Step 5

The Department of Public Works will schedule a notice of public hearing wherein it will request a formal hearing and publication and mailing of the notice as required by State law. If any property owner believes that their property does not benefit from the work proposed, the property owner should file a verified petition as set forth in Streets & Highway Code section 1168.5 prior to the date of the formal hearing.

Step 6

At the hearing, the County Board of Supervisors will determine whether the PRD should be formed. If the Board votes in favor of formation, the PRD is considered formed.


Typically, a PRD can be formed, and a special tax placed on the ballot within 12 to 18 months. Initial road work can usually occur 6 to 12 months after the special tax passes and a loan taken out.


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