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SB-83 Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program.(2021-2022)

As Amends the Law Today


 Division 20.6.6 (commencing with Section 30975) is added to the Public Resources Code, to read:

DIVISION 20.6.6 Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program

 This division shall be known, and may be cited, as the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program.
 The Legislature finds and declares all of the following:
(a) Anthropogenic climate change has been, and will continue to be, a very serious threat to the future of California. Rising global temperatures, and the subsequent melting of polar ice caps, has resulted in an increased rise in sea levels worldwide with significant ramifications for coastal communities.
(b) Current projections indicate California’s coast will experience a sea level rise of one-half of one foot by 2030, two feet by 2050, and seven feet by 2100. A higher sea level exacerbates the threats of coastal erosion, storm surge, and flood damage along California’s coastline and will very likely result in saltwater intrusion that will threaten drinking water supplies.
(c) Currently, the California coastline is home to 68 percent of the state’s population and is responsible for 80 percent of its gross domestic product. California’s ocean-based economy employs over 500,000 people and is valued at approximately forty-five billion dollars ($45,000,000,000) annually.
(d) Any attempt to properly address the threat of sea level rise must include a broad range of creative climate change mitigation strategies to limit greenhouse gas emissions and the worst impacts of climate change, and must include adaption and resiliency efforts designed to prepare communities for the impacts we cannot avoid.
 The following definitions shall apply for purposes of this division:
(a) “Bank” means the California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank.
(b) “Conservancy” means the State Coastal Conservancy.
(c) “Council” means the Ocean Protection Council established pursuant to Section 35600.
(d) “Fund” means the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Fund established pursuant to Section 30980.
(e) “Local jurisdiction” means a city, county, or resource conservation district in which a vulnerable coastal property is located. A county, resource conservation district, or joint powers authority, which may include a state agency, may act as the local jurisdiction for a city or county upon implementation of a memorandum of understanding between the two jurisdictions.
(f) “Vulnerable coastal property” means any coastal improved land containing a building or structure, or agricultural land, identified by a local jurisdiction that is vulnerable to sea level rise, as determined in accordance with the criteria developed by the council pursuant to Section 30978.
 (a) The council, in consultation with the conservancy, shall develop the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program. The program shall provide low-interest loans to local jurisdictions for the purchase of coastal properties in their jurisdictions identified as vulnerable coastal property, pursuant to this division.
(b)  Before January 1, 2023, the council, in consultation with other state planning and coastal management agencies, including, but not limited to, the Office of Planning and Research, the Strategic Growth Council, the California Coastal Commission, the State Lands Commission, the conservancy, and the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission, shall do both of the following:
(1) Adopt criteria and guidelines for the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program, including, but not limited to, all of the following:
(A) Required conditions for coastal properties to be identified as vulnerable coastal properties. The council shall consider all of the following factors when setting conditions for coastal properties to be identified as vulnerable coastal properties:
(i) Whether the property will be able to generate enough revenue to repay the loan.
(ii) The cost effectiveness of providing the property a loan.
(iii) Whether the property is part of the implementation of a local or regional plan to address the impacts of sea level rise.
(iv) Whether acquiring the property could provide public benefits, including, but not limited to, if the property could later provide sea level rise mitigation as natural infrastructure.
(B) Specific information required to be included in a vulnerable coastal property plan created by a local jurisdiction in order to determine the risks of sea level rise and related risks to that community, including, but not limited to, flooding and erosion.
(C) Criteria, including existing applicable laws and other standards, to identify when a vulnerable coastal property is no longer habitable.
(D) Criteria to determine how to adjust the program depending on available funding.
(2) Post all criteria and guidelines on the council’s internet website.
 (a) A local jurisdiction may apply for, and may be awarded, a low-interest loan through the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program from the conservancy only if the local jurisdiction completes both of the following:
(1) Develops and submits to the conservancy a vulnerable coastal property plan for its jurisdiction. The vulnerable coastal property plan shall include all of the following:
(A) An explanation of how the vulnerable coastal property or properties included in the plan meet the criteria developed by the council pursuant to Section 30978.
(B) The process and timeframe for the local jurisdiction to acquire the vulnerable coastal property included in the plan.
(C) The lease agreement for, or plan for leasing, any vulnerable coastal property included in the plan that demonstrates the rental income is sufficient to repay the loan.
(D) The management plan for any vulnerable coastal property included in the plan that covers the time period necessary to repay the loan.
(E) An explanation of how any structure included in the plan will be removed from the property when it can no longer be safely occupied without need for a shoreline protective device.
(2) All other requirements imposed by the conservancy under this division.
(b) The conservancy shall review a vulnerable coastal property plan submitted by a local jurisdiction pursuant to this section, and, if it determines the plan meets the criteria and guidelines pursuant to Section 30978, the conservancy shall approve the plan in writing. If the conservancy finds the plan does not meet the criteria and guidelines, the conservancy shall return the plan to the local jurisdiction with a clear explanation of why the plan fails to meet the criteria, and, if practicable, suggestions for improving the plan. The conservancy may consider available resources when deciding to approve or return a plan.
(c) (1) If awarded a loan under this section, a local jurisdiction shall use the moneys to purchase the vulnerable coastal property or properties included in the vulnerable coastal property plan through a fair and transparent purchase process.
(2) The local jurisdiction shall not use eminent domain to acquire vulnerable coastal properties included in this program.
 (a) There is hereby created in the State Treasury the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Fund, to be administered by the conservancy, for the purpose of providing low-interest loans to eligible local jurisdictions in accordance with the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program established under this division.
(b) Upon request of the conservancy, the bank shall make recommendations regarding the specific financing mechanisms and risk mitigation measures necessary and appropriate for the successful administration of the fund. Recommendations may include identifying available funds to make direct loans, or to capitalize trust funds for the purpose of guaranteeing loans made by a participating lender. Recommendations may also include a proposal for the issuance of revenue bonds by the bank, if feasible.
(c) The conservancy, upon appropriation by the Legislature for these purposes, may provide low-interest loans from the fund for purposes of the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program to any local jurisdiction that meets the requirements of Sections 30978 and 30979 in connection with the financing or refinancing of a vulnerable coastal property in accordance with an agreement, or agreements, between the conservancy and the local jurisdiction, either as a sole lender or in participation or syndication with other lenders. The financing shall not exceed the total value of the vulnerable coastal property being financed. The conservancy may cease providing loans and accepting vulnerable coastal property plans when there is insufficient money in the fund to do so.
(d) All moneys received for repayment of a loan, and any penalties, interest, and fees in connection with a loan, provided for purposes of the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program shall be deposited in the fund, for appropriation by the Legislature. Penalty moneys in the revolving fund shall be available, upon appropriation by the Legislature, for additional loans authorized under this division.
(e) The conservancy may use moneys in the fund, upon appropriation for this purpose, for administrative costs incurred in implementing the Sea Level Rise Revolving Loan Program.
 The implementation of this division is contingent upon an appropriation by the Legislature in the annual Budget Act or another statute for its purposes.