CSAC Bulletin Article

Housing, land Use and Transportation Signed, Vetoed Bill Summary

October 6, 2016


AB 516 (Mullin). Temporary License Plates: Support – Signed. Creates a temporary license plate program, which, among other goals, will help prevent toll evasion. CSAC supported this measure because California receives credits for toll revenues. These toll credits benefit federally funded transportation projects in all areas of the state.

AB 723 (Chiu). Housing Finance and CDBG Fix: Support – Signed. Ensures that “non-entitlement” jurisdictions under the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program are eligible to apply for future rounds of grants administered by the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD). CSAC supported this bill because it will ensure access to this vital funding source for housing and related infrastructure even if prior grant-funded projects have been delayed due to circumstances beyond a county’s control.

AB 1934 (Santiago). Mixed Use Development Bonus: Neutral – Signed. Creates until 2022 a program whereby local governments must negotiate mutually-agreed upon concessions and incentives with the developer of a commercial project that includes affordable housing units, or supports off-site development of affordable housing in conjunction with a commercial project. CSAC had initial concerns with the bill but removed concerns based on clarifying amendments, the sunset date, and a requirement that off-site affordable housing be constructed in the same jurisdiction as the commercial development.

AB 2208 (Santiago). Housing Element Site Inventory: Neutral – Signed. Allows a local government to include publicly-owned or leased sites that are residentially zoned and which can be developed at a higher density, or which contain an existing facility owned or leased by the local government that could accommodate housing, in its inventory of land suitable for housing development. CSAC had initial concerns with the measure, but took a neutral position based on amendments ensuring that the bill is permissive in nature rather than a mandate to include certain sites that may not be appropriate for housing in the inventory of suitable land, as well as a requirement that HCD provide implementation guidance.

AB 2299 (Bloom). Second Units: Support – Signed & SB 1069 (Wieckowski) Second Units: Neutral – Signed. These two bills amend California’s existing law governing the permitting of second residential units, which they renamed “accessory dwelling units” (ADUs). While local governments will continue to be able to designate zones where ADUs are permitted or prohibited, these bills removed the provision in existing law that allowed local governments to completely preclude the development of ADUs within the local jurisdiction. The bills also require that accessory dwelling units be approved through a ministerial process, and impose a 120-day timeframe for local agency action on permits.

In regard to parking standards, CSAC favored the approach taken by AB 2299 and elected to support that bill. The Governor ultimately approved both bills, however, including SB 1069’s prohibition on local government parking requirements when a second unit is proposed within one-half mile of a transit stop, in a historic district, in part of an existing primary residence or an existing accessory structure, or in an area requiring on-street parking permits but where they are not offered to the ADU resident, or the unit is within one block of a carshare vehicle. CSAC previously opposed SB 1069, but removed our opposition when problematic language related to fees for new second units was removed.

Finally, the bills provide that local agencies that do not have a compliant zoning ordinance by January 1, 2017 to ministerially approve ADU applications applying only the standards included in state law.

AB 2406 (Thurmond). Junior Accessory Dwelling Units: Support – Signed. Creates a voluntary statutory framework for local government approval of “junior accessory dwelling units” within existing homes. CSAC supported this measure because it offers a voluntary process whereby counties can promote the creation of additional housing units within existing homes.

AB 2501 (Bloom). Affordable Housing Density Bonus: Neutral – Signed. Streamlines and clarifies the state’s density bonus law. CSAC previously opposed the measure, but removed our opposition based on amendments that eliminated an arbitrary timeline for review and action on applications and the overly-broad “deemed-approved” remedy. CSAC-requested amendments also included provisions ensuring that local governments are not prohibited from requiring an applicant to provide reasonable documentation for a requested density bonus, incentives or concessions, as well as a continued requirement that concessions lead to actual cost reductions, which provide for affordable housing costs or affordable rental rates.

SB 1000 (Leyva). General Plans: Environmental Justice: Support – Signed. Requires that general plans be amended to either incorporate an environmental justice element or integrate related goals, policies, and objectives within the other elements. CSAC initially took a “support if amended” position, and moved into full support when the author took clarifying amendments and added provisions to only require local agencies to adopt an environmental justice element or related policies when two or more elements are updated concurrently on or after January 2018.

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