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AB-2137 Planning and Zoning Law: court orders: housing development projects.(2019-2020)

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Date Published: 02/10/2020 09:00 PM
AB2137:v99#DOCUMENT


CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill
No. 2137


Introduced by Assembly Member Wicks

February 10, 2020


An act to amend Section 65755 of the Government Code, relating to land use.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 2137, as introduced, Wicks. Planning and Zoning Law: court orders: housing development projects.
The Planning and Zoning Law requires a county or city to adopt a comprehensive, long-term general plan for the physical development of the county or city that includes, among other mandatory elements, a housing element. Existing law requires a court, when issuing a final order or judgment in favor of a plaintiff challenging the validity of a general plan or mandatory element, to include one or more specified remedies in the order or judgment. Under existing law, these remedies include, among others, suspension of the authority of the city, county, or city and county to issue specified building permits, to grant zoning changes or variances, and to grant subdivision map approvals, as provided.
The Housing Accountability Act, which is part of the Planning and Zoning Law, prohibits a local agency from disapproving a housing development project for very low, low-, or moderate-income households, or an emergency shelter, or condition approval in a manner that renders the housing development project infeasible for development for the use of very low, low-, or moderate-income households, or an emergency shelter, including through the use of design review standards, unless it makes prescribed written findings. The act defines a housing development project for these purposes to mean residential units, mixed-use developments consisting of residential and nonresidential uses with at least two-thirds of the square footage designated for residential use, and transitional housing or supportive housing.
This bill would remove the option of a court, when issuing a final order or judgment in favor of a plaintiff challenging the validity of a general plan or mandatory element, to suspend the authority of the city, county, or city and county to issue specified building permits, to grant zoning changes or variances, and to grant subdivision map approvals, for housing development projects, as defined in the Housing Accountability Act.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 65755 of the Government Code is amended to read:

65755.
 (a) The court shall include, in the order or judgment rendered pursuant to Section 65754, one or more of the following provisions for any or all types or classes of developments or any or all geographic segments of the city, county, or city and county until the city, county, or city and county has substantially complied with the requirements of Article 5 (commencing with Section 65300):
(1) Suspend Except in relation to housing development projects, as defined in paragraph (2) of subdivision (h) of Section 65589.5, suspend the authority of the city, county, or city and county pursuant to Division 13 (commencing with Section 17910) of the Health and Safety Code, to issue building permits, or any category of building permits, and all other related permits, except that the city, county, or city and county shall continue to function as an enforcement agency for review of permit applications for appropriate codes and standards compliance, prior to the issuance of building permits and other related permits for residential housing for that city, county, or city and county.
(2) Suspend Except in relation to housing development projects, as defined in paragraph (2) of subdivision (h) of Section 65589.5, suspend the authority of the city, county, or city and county, pursuant to Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 65800) to grant any and all categories of zoning changes, variances, or both.
(3) Suspend Except in relation to housing development projects, as defined in paragraph (2) of subdivision (h) of Section 65589.5, suspend the authority of the city, county, or city and county, pursuant to Division 2 (commencing with Section 66410), to grant subdivision map approvals for any and all categories of subdivision map approvals.
(4) Mandate the approval of all applications for building permits, or other related construction permits, for residential housing where a final subdivision map, parcel map, or plot plan has been approved for the project, where the approval will not impact on the ability of the city, county, or city and county to properly adopt and implement an adequate housing element, and where the permit application conforms to all code requirements and other applicable provisions of law except those zoning laws held to be invalid by the final court order, and changes to the zoning ordinances adopted after such final court order which were enacted for the purpose of preventing the construction of a specific residential development.
(5) Mandate the approval of any or all final subdivision maps for residential housing projects which have previously received a tentative map approval from the city, county, or city and county pursuant to Division 2 (commencing with Section 66410) when the final map conforms to the approved tentative map, the tentative map has not expired, and where approval will not impact on the ability of the city, county, or city and county to properly adopt and implement an adequate housing element.
(6) Mandate that notwithstanding the provisions of Sections 66473.5 and 66474, any tentative subdivision map for a residential housing project shall be approved if all of the following requirements are met:
(A) The approval of the map will not significantly impair the ability of the city, county, or city and county to adopt and implement those elements or portions thereof of the general plan which have been held to be inadequate.
(B) The map complies with all of the provisions of Division 2 (commencing with Section 66410), except those parts which would require disapproval of the project due to the inadequacy of the general plan.
(C) The approval of the map will not affect the ability of the city, county, or city and county to adopt and implement an adequate housing element.
(D) The map is consistent with the portions of the general plan not found inadequate and the proposed revisions, if applicable, to the part of the plan held inadequate.
(b) Any order or judgment of a court which includes the remedies described in paragraphs (1), (2), or (3) of subdivision (a) shall exclude from the operation of that order or judgment any action, program, or project required by law to be consistent with a general or specific plan if the court finds that the approval or undertaking of the action, program, or project complies with both of the following requirements:
(1) That it will not significantly impair the ability of the city, county, or city and county to adopt or amend all or part of the applicable plan as may be necessary to make the plan substantially comply with the requirements of Article 5 (commencing with Section 65300) in the case of a general plan, or Article 8 (commencing with Section 65450) in the case of a specific plan.
(2) That it is consistent with those portions of the plan challenged in the action or proceeding and found by the court to substantially comply with applicable provisions of law.
The party seeking exclusion from any order or judgment of a court pursuant to this subdivision shall have the burden of showing that the action, program, or project complies with paragraphs (1) and (2).
(c) Notwithstanding Section 65754.4 or subdivisions (a) and (b), in any action or proceeding brought pursuant to subdivision (d) of Section 65009, no remedy pursuant to this section or injunction pursuant to Section 65754.5 shall abrogate, impair, or otherwise interfere with the full exercise of the rights and protections granted to (1) an applicant for a tentative map pursuant to Section 66474.2, or (2) a developer pursuant to Sections 65866 and 66498.1.