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AB-644 Land use: general plan: safety element: fire hazard impacts.(2015-2016)

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Assembly Bill No. 644
CHAPTER 402

An act to amend Section 66474.02 of the Government Code, relating to land use.

[ Approved by Governor  October 01, 2015. Filed with Secretary of State  October 01, 2015. ]

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 644, Wood. Land use: general plan: safety element: fire hazard impacts.
The Subdivision Map Act requires the legislative body of a city or county to deny approval of a tentative map, or a parcel map for which a tentative map was not required, unless it makes certain findings. Under that act, the legislative body of a county is required to make 3 specified findings before approving a tentative map, or a parcel map for which a tentative map was not required, for an area located in a state responsibility area or a very high fire hazard severity zone, as defined.
This bill would exempt from those requirements the approval of a tentative map, or a parcel map for which a tentative map was not required, that would subdivide land identified in the open space element of the general plan for the managed production of resources, as defined. The bill would apply the exemption to the subdivision of land that is consistent with the open space purpose, and would require the land to be subject to a binding and recorded restriction prohibiting the development of a habitable, industrial, or commercial building or structure if the subdivision would result in parcels that are 40 acres or smaller in size. The bill would require all other structures to comply with specified defensible space requirements. The bill would additionally require the legislative body to make the 3 specified findings before later approving the removal of a binding restriction placed as a condition of a tentative map, or a parcel map for which a tentative map was not required, for land that was previously exempt from those requirements if the proposed subdivision would allow the development of a building or structure as specified.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 66474.02 of the Government Code is amended to read:

66474.02.
 (a) Before approving a tentative map, or a parcel map for which a tentative map was not required, for an area located in a state responsibility area or a very high fire hazard severity zone, as both are defined in Section 51177, a legislative body of a county shall, except as provided in subdivision (b), make the following three findings:
(1) A finding supported by substantial evidence in the record that the design and location of each lot in the subdivision, and the subdivision as a whole, are consistent with any applicable regulations adopted by the State Board of Forestry and Fire Protection pursuant to Sections 4290 and 4291 of the Public Resources Code.
(2) A finding supported by substantial evidence in the record that structural fire protection and suppression services will be available for the subdivision through any of the following entities:
(A) A county, city, special district, political subdivision of the state, or another entity organized solely to provide fire protection services that is monitored and funded by a county or other public entity.
(B) The Department of Forestry and Fire Protection by contract entered into pursuant to Section 4133, 4142, or 4144 of the Public Resources Code.
(3) A finding that to the extent practicable, ingress and egress for the subdivision meets the regulations regarding road standards for fire equipment access adopted pursuant to Section 4290 of the Public Resources Code and any applicable local ordinance.
(b) (1) Subdivision (a) does not apply to the approval of a tentative map, or a parcel map for which a tentative map was not required, that would subdivide land identified in the open space element of the general plan for the managed production of resources, including, but not limited to, forest land, rangeland, agricultural land, and areas of economic importance for the production of food or fiber, if the subdivision is consistent with the open space purpose and if, for the subdivision of land that would result in parcels that are 40 acres or smaller in size, those parcels are subject to a binding and recorded restriction prohibiting the development of a habitable, industrial, or commercial building or structure. All other structures shall comply with defensible space requirements described in Section 51182 of this code or Section 4291 of the Public Resources Code.
(2) Any later approval to remove a binding restriction placed as a condition of a tentative map, or a parcel map for which a tentative map was not required, that would allow the development of a building or structure for a parcel that has previously been exempted from the requirements of subdivision (a) pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subdivision shall be subject to the requirements of subdivision (a).
(c) This section shall not supersede regulations established by the State Board of Forestry and Fire Protection or local ordinances that provide equivalent or more stringent minimum requirements than those contained within this section.