If you work, live, play or even breathe anywhere in San Diego County, there is one part of County government that you interact with every day. It is the Land Use and Environment Group, or LUEG.
LUEG is comprised of seven departments whose functions range from building and maintaining county infrastructure to protecting our environment and public health, and from promoting agriculture and consumer protection to showing you how to better grow your garden.
If you drive anywhere on a county roadway, it’s the Department of Public Works that makes sure our nearly 2,000 miles of roadways, our bridges and guardrails, and even signs and traffic lights as well as those painted crosswalks are maintained. DPW runs our eight County airports including McClellan-Palomar and Gillespie Field. DPW crews plow the mountain roads during and after the winter storms and keep our storm channels and drains clear in preparation for those storms.
If you eat in a restaurant or buy something from a mobile food vendor you will see that grade card in the window telling you the business has been inspected and how it faired. Or, if you go to the beach and see signs posted on the safety of the water or check the internet beforehand that’s all done by the Department of Environmental Health. DEH also has a very active vector control program for mosquitoes, and other rodents that may carry disease. The Hazardous Incident Response TEAM (HIRT) is part of the HazMat section that responds to chemical spills and other emergencies.
Planning and Development Services inspects plans and even the buildings and houses under construction to ensure everything is built to code and safe.
If you shop at a local certified farmers market, or buy ornamental shrubbery, or even receive a shipment of flowers, it’s Agriculture, Weights and Measures that makes sure those shipments going in our out of the county are pest-free. If you buy gasoline, take a ride in a taxi, or buy anything that involves a scanned price, it’s a function of AWM to ensure you get what you pay for.
And to help you with your gardening, or any type horticulture, the Farm and Home Advisor, part of the UC Cooperative Extension, offers free advice. FHA also runs several other programs such as 4-H, family nutrition, and Marine and Natural Resources.
And so we can all breathe easier, the Air Pollution Control District works to maintain and constantly improve our air quality – today the best it’s been in the past six decades.
And of course we all like to play outdoors, or picnic, or hike or bike or camp. The Department of Parks and Recreation oversees more than 100 parks, campgrounds, community centers and preserves throughout the County – all to enhance our quality of life. It is true what they say, “Parks make life better.” And here in San Diego we have lots of them – literally something for everyone.
So whatever you do in San Diego County, as a resident or visitor, LUEG in one way or another is part of your life. But it’s not just about infrastructure, or agriculture, or beach water quality, or building for the future – it’s about YOU!
How you can contact LUEG departments
Agriculture, Weights & Measures (Kearny Mesa) 858-694-2739
Agriculture, Weights & Measures (San Marcos) 760-752-4700
The Farm & Home Advisor (Kearny Mesa) 858-694-2845
The Farm & Home Advisor (San Marcos) 760-752-4724
Environmental Health 858-505-6700
Planning and Development Services General Number 858-694-2960
Building Division: (858) 565-5920
Code Enforcement: (858) 694-2705
Zoning Counter: (858) 565-5981
Public Works 858- 694-2212
for additional numbers in Public Works, visit the DPW contacts website.
County Airports 619-956-4800
Road Maintenance (and to check on scheduled road closures) 858-694-3850
Pothole Hotline 1-877-684-8000
Wastewater 858-514-4990 (after hours 858-565-5255)
Parks & Recreation 858-694-3030
Reservations: 858-565-3600 or toll free at 877-565-3600
LUEG Administrative Offices: 619-531-6256 Fax: 619-531-5476
Mail: 1600 Pacific Highway, Room 212, Mail Stop A-6, San Diego, CA 92101
Land - Environment - Recreation - Infrastructure
General Manager / Deputy Chief Administrative Officer
Sarah Aghassi serves as the General Manager / Deputy Chief Administrative Officer for San Diego County’s Land Use and Environment Group. LUEG is comprised of the Departments of Public Works; Environmental Health; Planning and Development Services; Parks and Recreation; Agriculture, Weights and Measures; Air Pollution Control District, and the Farm and Home Advisor. The departments have a combined workforce of 1550 persons and an annual operating budget of $400 million.
Before appointment to her current position she served as the Director for the San Diego County Office of Strategy and Intergovernmental Affairs where she managed the legislative program and policy issues on behalf of the Board of Supervisors and responded to state and federal legislation that impact the operations, fiscal stability and programs and services of the county. Sarah was also the County of San Diego’s liaison for the American Recovery Act projects, managing more than $118 million in federal economic stimulus funds awarded to the County. Prior to joining the County, Sarah was Director of Public Policy for the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce.
Sarah is a licensed attorney in the state of California. She earned her law degree from University of the Pacific – McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, and her bachelor’s degree in International Relations from the University of San Diego.