Temporary Events

What is the process?

Step 1: Determine if temporary events are allowed.


  • In the top right hand corner, use the “Search...” feature to search for the property.  The property can be found using an address or Assessor’s Parcel Number.    


  • Click on the parcel to highlight it in yellow, and display basic property information.  Scroll down in the information box to the “Land Uses”, and identify the Land Use Category that is assigned to the property.   


  • Temporary events ARE allowed in the following Land Use Categories, with a Minor Use Permit:  
    • AG – Agriculture (on non-prime soils). 

      • To determine if the property has prime soils, click the blue “I want to...” button, and click “See Layer List”.  

      • Expand the “Environment” category.  Expand the “Physical Env” sub-category.  Expand the “Geology/Soils” sub-sub-category, and click the box for “Countywide Soils”.   

    • RL – Rural Lands  

    • RR – Residential Rural  

    • OP – Office and Professional  

    • CR – Commercial Retail  

    • CS – Commercial Services  

    • IND – Industrial  

    • REC – Recreation  

    • PF – Public Facilities 


  • Temporary events ARE NOT allowed in the following Land Use Categories:  
    • AG – Agriculture (on prime soils)  

      • To determine if the property has prime soils, click the blue “I want to...” button, and click “See Layer List”.  

      • Expand the “Environment” category.  Expand the “Physical Env” sub-category.  Expand the “Geology/Soils” sub-sub-category, and click the box for “Countywide Soils”.  

    • RS – Residential Suburban  

    • RSF – Residential Single-Family  

    • RMF – Residential Multi-Family  

    • OS – Open Space  

Step 2: Determine number of unobstructed access points.

  • A minimum of two unobstructed access points from the property to a publicly-maintained road must be present, or possible.   

  • If the property has less than two public access points, a Conditional Use Permit is required to waive this standard.   

Step 3: Schedule a Pre-Application Meeting (Optional)

A pre-application meeting is intended to aid prospective applicants in understanding the required rules and regulations that apply to their project and to reveal potential problems. The goal of providing a pre-application meeting is to make the permitting process as efficient and understandable as possible. These meetings are typically optional. If the applicant chooses to utilize this process, there is a separate fee that must be paid prior the meeting.

Request a Pre-Application Meeting.

Step 4: Complete a Land Use Permit Application

Step 5: Assemble the other required documents.

  1. Detailed Project Description that includes:  
    • Frequency of events  

    • Maximum number of attendees at each event  

    • Hours of operation  

    • Narrative summary of operations including shuffling, parking, catering, restrooms, etc. 

  2. Site Plan that illustrates the location of the events, access points, and other public facilities.   
  3. Traffic Report that estimates the quantity of traffic that will be generated by the venue and evaluates the impact of that traffic on existing roadway conditions.   
  4. Noise Study that identifies the impact of amplified sound at the property, and identifies methods to ensure compliance with County Code Section 22.10.120 or 23.06.040.  

Step 6: Apply Online

  1. Click on the PermitSLO link here: Land Use Permit Application
  2. Click Apply
  3. Log In or Register
  4. Upload the following before clicking Submit:
    1. Application Package
    2. Plan Set
      • Site Plan
      • Vacinity Map
    3. Legal Lot Verification
    4. Other Supplemental Information 
      • Detailed Project Description
      • Traffic Report
      • Noise Study


***Digital Copies are now required with submission***

Planning staff will look over the application submittal package and contact the primary contact with any questions. 

If you would like to learn more about our online services, click here: Learn about PermitSLO.

Step 7: Pay Invoice

Staff will email the billing contact an invoice. Pay invoice here* on PermitSLO.

Once the invoice is paid, the project review timeline will begin.

Please note for all Planning and Building applications, after 15 days of non-payment of invoice, the application will be voided and resubmittal will be required.

Step 8: Review by Staff

Department of Planning & Building staff reviews the application for consistency with applicable land use regulations.

Step 9: Environmental Review

Environmental Review will occur, and additional fees will be invoiced.

Step 10: Schedule a Hearing

Staff schedules the application for a public hearing called a Planning Department Hearing.

Step 11: Reach Decision

During the public hearing, the hearing body considers the application and reaches a decision to either approve, conditionally approve, or deny the application.

Step 12: Appeal Hearing (If Needed)

Any person can appeal a decision to the Board of Supervisors. Projects located within the Coastal Zone can be appealed to (or by) the California Coastal Commission.

Step 13: Record Agreements

Depending on the conditions of approval, the applicant may be required to enter into one or more legal agreements.

Step 14: Extend Approval (Optional)

The applicant may apply for a time extension to extend the approval date for one year. The maximum available time extensions are based on the land use entitlement type.

Step 15: Proceed with Entitlement

Approval of a land use permit only entitles the use itself. This approval includes conditions (such as requiring additional approvals from other agencies) and possible mitigation measures that the applicant must comply with. Because only the use is entitled with approval of a land use permit, any construction or grading is subject to separate permits.

Who is eligible?

This service is available to anyone applying for a land use permit for the use of any structure or land for events.   

Is there a charge for this service?

Please refer to the Department of Planning and Building Fee Schedule for application fees.

When and where is this service offered?

This service is available throughout the year during regular business hours except during scheduled holidays.


On October 6, 2009, the Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution interpreting the Temporary Events Ordinance.  This document summarizes the interpretation.   

Minor land use permits and conditional land use permits are discretionary permits that require a public hearing.   

Structures that will be used for temporary events may require modification to ensure compliance with the requirements for “Public Assembly” occupancy in the California Building Code.   

Fire sprinklers and other fire suppression systems may be required to ensure public safety. 

Temporary events are not allowed on a site containing a residential vacation rental, unless a land use permit authorizing temporary events has also been approved. 

If temporary events occur on a property without a land use permit, the Department will take enforcement action.  Information about illegal temporary event venues can be reported to Code Enforcement.   

The County, through adoption of various ordinances, has determined that there are certain types of uses that may have an impact on the area in which they are located. These types of uses require the approval of a land use permit, which sets conditions for the use's establishment and operation.