Supervisor Kate Sears - Housing in Tam Valley and the Gateway communities


County of Marin - Supervisor Sears


Dear Friends in Tam Valley, Almonte and our Gateway communities:


Thank you for the honor of serving as your District 3 County Supervisor, representing southern Marin. Having grown up in Mill Valley and Sausalito, I am keenly aware of what makes Tam Valley and our other local communities special.  


For several months now, there has been ongoing discussion and concern about housing in Tam Valley. While some of the dialogue is helpful, some of the information being shared is inaccurate or incomplete.


It’s important to have reliable information in order to understand basic concepts in planning and housing law and how they affect Tam Valley, Almonte and our Gateway communities. I want to reassure you that, contrary to what you may have heard or read, there is no current application to build “high density housing” in Tam Valley.


Planning is an ongoing responsibility of our county government. It is a continuous, day to day and year round task that is part of the legal responsibility of local government (representatives in consultation with the local communities) to determine how land is used and for what purposes. As your representative at the County of Marin, I take this responsibility seriously and want you to know that preserving and protecting community character and upholding our environmental values are my primary concerns in land use.


I hear and share your concerns.  Housing is a complex issue that deserves to be understood by us all. Identification of housing sites is for planning purposes; it does not mean that development proposals for these sites are currently under review or will be submitted in the future. Property owners are free to choose if and when they want to further develop their sites in conformance with the County's zoning rules and other development regulations.


To provide a clearer understanding of planning, housing and the entire breadth of issues under discussion, I have asked our County planning staff to develop a Tam Valley housing information webpage. It is called The Housing Element and Tam Valley.  It answers the basic questions that I have heard asked and lets you know how to be constructively involved in this important community dialogue.


The goal here is to let you know:

  • what is going on with housing and ongoing planning at the county and regional levels,
  • the big issues (traffic, environmental impacts, flooding and sea level rise) being examined and considered, and
  • how to stay informed and be constructively involved and heard.


Here is the link to The Housing Element and Tam Valley: 


Please read it carefully and take the time to fully understand the information provided. Feel free to share this information with friends, neighbors and others who you know would benefit from it.


Thank you for taking the time to study this issue with me and to let me know your thoughts and suggestions going forward.


To stay in touch, I have listed below several ways to communicate with me and to keep yourself informed about this and other issues.


I look forward to working with you!




Kate Sears

Supervisor, Southern Marin


Stay In Touch with Kate Sears and Keep Yourself Up To Date About Marin County News and Information


Here are several ways to stay in touch with me.


1) Sign Up for Kate Sears News and Information Updates:


You can sign up at this link:  to receive direct email updates on important events, meetings and issues. 


2) Follow Kate Sears’ news and information postings on Facebook: 


3) Call or write me at my office:


Please feel free to call me or my Aides Maureen Parton and Leslie Alden at 415-473-7331, or email me at