Chaffee County Planning & Zoning

To Schedule a Pre-Application Conference, CLICK HERE

Department Information

Planning & Zoning Staff work closely with other county departments, including Road and Bridge, Building Safety, and Environmental Health, to assist landowners in using their property, and to enforce the adopted Land Use Code to protect surrounding property owners from incompatible land uses. The Planning Department staff is responsible for advising the Board of Commissioners, the Planning Commission, and the public on land use and development issues. The planning staff accepts and reviews all land planning applications according to the County Land Use Code and County Master plans. The staff also prepares updates and revisions to the County's Land Use Codes for review by the Board of Commissioners to keep up with the changing values of the County's citizens.

Public Hearing Packets

Information and packets related to all Planning & Zoning matters set for public hearing is linked to the scheduled hearing date within the County's CivicClerk platform

Chaffee County Land Use Statistics

The County's land area is approximately 649,508 acres, which is equal to approximately 1014 square miles. Of this area, a large majority is managed by various federal, state and local government entities, including the US Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, the State Land Board, and the state Divisions of Wildlife and Corrections. Excluding the incorporated municipalities of Salida, Buena Vista and Poncha Springs, there are approximately 120,000 acres of privately owned land in Chaffee County.

Temporary Moratorium on Certain Land Use Applications

The Chaffee County Board of County Commissioners (BOCC) unanimously voted to adopt a temporary moratorium on the acceptance of certain types of land use applications, effective June 7th, 2022. The hiatus on acceptance of applications, adopted via Resolution 2022-41 at the BOCC’s regular meeting on June 7th, will allow for the county to ensure focus on the on-going Land Use Code (LUC) update project and support long-term land use decisions that are in alignment with the standards and procedures to be considered within the updated LUC. 

The temporary moratorium was extended on November 15, 2022 by unanimous vote of the BOCC via Resolution 2022-74, until adoption of new Land Use Code provisions relating to land subdivision standards and land use change procedures. The anticipated date of this adoption is September 2023.

This pause on acceptance of development applications also gives the County opportunity to work on developing water adequacy standards for proposed land use reviews, while it also pursues more comprehensive studies evaluating water adequacy and availability for long-range planning. Read more at 

Chaffee County Assessor Searchable Zoning Map

A Chaffee County searchable zoning map, which can provide information on property zoning, floodplains, and other helpful information, is available here. In order to view the zoning layers, you must select "County Zoning" on the Layer List within the map.

Short-Term Rentals (STRs)

The Fee Schedule for STRs was updated by the Board of County Commissioners on October 3, 2023. The current Fee Schedule is here. For questions on Short-Term Rental licenses, contact Brandon Wolff or call 719-530-5570.

Special Events

Please submit all Special Event Applications online using the Special Event Permit Application Form.

Payment of the $150 application fee can be taken over the phone via credit card (incurs an additional $5 service fee by the card processor), paid by check in person, or mailed to the Planning Department, Attn: Special Event Permit Application, PO Box 699, Salida, CO 81201

If you have questions about Special Events, please email the Planning Department or call 719-530-5630.

Calendar List of Special Events:  A list of County-approved Special Events and pending applications - including event dates - may be found here. This may be used as a guide for planning additional events in order to avoid conflicts. Please note that this list may not always be updated in real time, so please contact the Planning Department for additional information. 

Requirements for Special Events may be found in the Chaffee County Land Use Code - Section 4.2.5 - Special Events

Department Phone:      (719) 530-5630

Miles Cottom
Planning Director

Garry Baker
Planning Manager

Brandon Wolff
Planner II

Caitlynn Fortner
Planning Technician

Nick Gomer
Planning Technician

Wendy Gordon
Principal Planner - Environment & Natural Resources

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