Code Section Group

Public Resources Code - PRC

DIVISION 20. CALIFORNIA COASTAL ACT [30000 - 30900]

  ( Division 20 added by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1330. )

CHAPTER 9. Judicial Review, Enforcement, and Penalties [30800 - 30824]

  ( Chapter 9 added by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1330. )

ARTICLE 2. Penalties [30820 - 30824]
  ( Article 2 added by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1330. )

30820.
  

(a) Any person who violates any provision of this division may be civilly liable in accordance with this subdivision as follows:

(1) Civil liability may be imposed by the superior court in accordance with this article on any person who performs or undertakes development that is in violation of this division or that is inconsistent with any coastal development permit previously issued by the commission, a local government that is implementing a certified local coastal program, or a port governing body that is implementing a certified port master plan, in an amount that shall not exceed thirty thousand dollars ($30,000) and shall not be less than five hundred dollars ($500).

(2) Civil liability may be imposed for any violation of this division other than that specified in paragraph (1) in an amount that shall not exceed thirty thousand dollars ($30,000).

(b) Any person who performs or undertakes development that is in violation of this division or that is inconsistent with any coastal development permit previously issued by the commission, a local government that is implementing a certified local coastal program, or a port governing body that is implementing a certified port master plan, when the person intentionally and knowingly performs or undertakes the development in violation of this division or inconsistent with any previously issued coastal development permit, may, in addition to any other penalties, be civilly liable in accordance with this subdivision. Civil liability may be imposed by the superior court in accordance with this article for a violation as specified in this subdivision in an amount which shall not be less than one thousand dollars ($1,000), nor more than fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000), per day for each day in which the violation persists.

(c) In determining the amount of civil liability, the following factors shall be considered:

(1) The nature, circumstance, extent, and gravity of the violation.

(2) Whether the violation is susceptible to restoration or other remedial measures.

(3) The sensitivity of the resource affected by the violation.

(4) The cost to the state of bringing the action.

(5) With respect to the violator, any voluntary restoration or remedial measures undertaken, any prior history of violations, the degree of culpability, economic profits, if any, resulting from, or expected to result as a consequence of, the violation, and such other matters as justice may require.

(Amended by Stats. 1993, Ch. 1199, Sec. 5. Effective January 1, 1994.)

30821.
  

(a) In addition to any other penalties imposed pursuant to this division, a person, including a landowner, who is in violation of the public access provisions of this division is subject to an administrative civil penalty that may be imposed by the commission in an amount not to exceed 75 percent of the amount of the maximum penalty authorized pursuant to subdivision (b) of Section 30820 for each violation. The administrative civil penalty may be assessed for each day the violation persists, but for no more than five years.

(b) All penalties imposed pursuant to subdivision (a) shall be imposed by majority vote of the commissioners present in a duly noticed public hearing in compliance with the requirements of Section 30810, 30811, or 30812.

(c) In determining the amount of civil liability, the commission shall take into account the factors set forth in subdivision (c) of Section 30820.

(d) A person shall not be subject to both monetary civil liability imposed under this section and monetary civil liability imposed by the superior court for the same act or failure to act. If a person who is assessed a penalty under this section fails to pay the administrative penalty, otherwise fails to comply with a restoration or cease and desist order issued by the commission in connection with the penalty action, or challenges any of these actions by the commission in a court of law, the commission may maintain an action or otherwise engage in judicial proceedings to enforce those requirements and the court may grant any relief as provided under this chapter.

(e) If a person fails to pay a penalty imposed by the commission pursuant to this section, the commission may record a lien on the property in the amount of the penalty assessed by the commission. This lien shall have the force, effect, and priority of a judgment lien.

(f) In enacting this section, it is the intent of the Legislature to ensure that unintentional, minor violations of this division that only cause de minimis harm will not lead to the imposition of administrative penalties if the violator has acted expeditiously to correct the violation.

(g) “Person,” for the purpose of this section, does not include a local government, a special district, or an agency thereof, when acting in a legislative or adjudicative capacity.

(h) Administrative penalties pursuant to subdivision (a) shall not be assessed if the property owner corrects the violation consistent with this division within 30 days of receiving written notification from the commission regarding the violation, and if the alleged violator can correct the violation without undertaking additional development that requires a permit under this division. This 30-day timeframe for corrective action does not apply to previous violations of permit conditions incurred by a property owner.

(i) The commission shall prepare and submit, pursuant to Section 9795 of the Government Code, a report to the Legislature by January 15, 2019, that includes all of the following:

(1) The number of new violations reported annually to the commission from January 1, 2015, to December 31, 2018, inclusive.

(2) The number of violations resolved from January 1, 2015, to December 31, 2018, inclusive.

(3) The number of administrative penalties issued pursuant to this section, the dollar amount of the penalties, and a description of the violations from January 1, 2015, to December 31, 2018, inclusive.

(j) Revenues derived pursuant to this section shall be deposited into the Violation Remediation Account of the Coastal Conservancy Fund and expended pursuant to Section 30823.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 35, Sec. 147. (SB 861) Effective June 20, 2014.)

30821.6.
  

(a) Any person or governmental agency who intentionally or negligently violates any cease and desist order issued, reissued, or amended by the executive director or the commission, or any restoration order issued, reissued, or amended by the commission, a local government that is implementing a certified local coastal program, or a port governing body that is implementing a certified port master plan may be liable civilly in a sum of not to exceed six thousand dollars ($6,000) for each day in which that violation persists. Any actual penalty imposed shall be reasonably proportionate to the damage suffered as a consequence of the violation.

(b) Sections 30809 and 30810 and subdivision (a) of this section do not authorize the issuance or enforcement of any cease and desist order as to any activity undertaken by a local governmental agency pursuant to a declaration of emergency by the board of supervisors of the county in which the activity is being or may be undertaken.

(Amended by Stats. 1993, Ch. 1199, Sec. 6. Effective January 1, 1994.)

30822.
  

Where a person has intentionally and knowingly violated any provision of this division or any order issued pursuant to this division, the commission may maintain an action, in addition to Section 30803 or 30805, for exemplary damages and may recover an award, the size of which is left to the discretion of the court. In exercising its discretion, the court shall consider the amount of liability necessary to deter further violations.

(Amended by Stats. 1993, Ch. 1199, Sec. 7. Effective January 1, 1994.)

30823.
  

Any funds derived under this article shall be expended for carrying out the provisions of this division, when appropriated by the Legislature. Funds so derived shall be deposited in the Violation Remediation Account of the Coastal Conservancy Fund until appropriated.

(Amended by Stats. 1982, Ch. 1618, Sec. 2.)

30824.
  

In addition to any other applicable penalty, any commission member who knowingly violates Section 30324 is subject to a civil fine, not to exceed seven thousand five hundred dollars ($7,500). Notwithstanding any law to the contrary, the court may award attorneys’ fees and costs to the prevailing party.

(Amended by Stats. 1993, Ch. 798, Sec. 5. Effective January 1, 1994.)

PRCPublic Resources Code - PRC2