PublicCEO: BB&K Municipal Law Team Discusses New Public Agency Laws - Part 2

Best Best & Krieger LLP
Contact

Best Best & Krieger LLP

Land Use, Telecommunications, Environmental and More

As noted in Part I of this two-part series, California lawmakers passed a number of new laws last year that greatly impact how public agencies serve their constituents.

Part II of this series explores the moves legislators made to address the State’s affordable housing crisis, including a measure exempting certain affordable housing properties from locally imposed Mello-Roos taxes (Assembly Bill 1743) and another establishing statewide rent caps and eviction rules (AB 1482).

Here is a recap of these laws, along with those addressing natural disaster evacuation routes, the California Environmental Quality Act, coastal protection and wildfire prevention. Unless otherwise noted, these new laws went into effect on Jan. 1.

State Relaxes Regulations, Streamlines Development Process
In an effort to spur housing development to meet the State’s rising housing demands, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed 15 bills last year that, among other things, streamline local development procedures and pave the way for Californians to build more accessory dwelling units.

  • AB 101: Taking effect in October 2019 after the 140-page bill was signed, AB 101 gave the California Department of Housing and Community Development more regulatory and financial tools to hold cities accountable for compliance with the state’s housing-element law.
  • AB 1486: California public agencies now have an expanded role under the Surplus Land Act to satisfy new housing-element requirements. The law revised the definition of a “local agency” to not only include every city, county and district (including school districts) but also sewer, water, utility and local and regional park districts, among others, empowered to acquire and hold real property. With the law impacting an agency’s existing practices relating to the disposal of surplus land, agencies should carefully evaluate their policies and procedures to avoid a penalty for noncompliance. AB 1486 took effect Jan. 1, but its penalty provisions go into effect in 2021.
  • AB 1482: The Tenant Protection Act of 2019, or AB 1482, takes some pressure off local agencies to address rising rents by setting statewide rent caps and eviction rules. Now, in any 12-month period, a residential landlord can only increase a tenant’s rent by 5 percent plus the percentage change in the cost of living or 10 percent, whichever is less. The law applies to all rent increases after March 15, 2019. Additionally, under AB 1482, a landlord cannot remove a tenant without just cause depending on the length of occupancy and housing type.
  • SB 330: The new law makes many changes including limiting the ordinances and policies cities and counties can apply to housing developments. Among its changes, SB 330 established a new preliminary application process that requires all public agencies to compile a checklist specifying what is required to complete a development application. The law also includes streamlining provisions that limit the number of hearings that a compliant project can be subject to.
  • AB 881, SB 13, AB 68, AB 671, AB 139, AB 670 and AB 587: To accelerate the development of accessory dwelling units, or ADUs, a number of laws were passed that further limit local regulation of ADUs. Under the laws, ADUs will be allowed in more locations and there will be fewer opportunities for agencies to regulate the size of ADUs or implement parking requirements (AB 881, SB 13 and AB 68) ADU’s are exempt from owner occupancy requirements until Jan. 1, 2025. Cities and counties will need to include ADUs, and report what they are doing to promote ADUs in their housing elements (AB 671 and AB 139). Additionally, homeowners’ associations are also restricted from limiting ADUs (AB 670) and the separate sale of ADUs is allowed in some situations (AB 587).
  • AB 1763, AB 1255, AB 1483 and SB 6: The 2019 housing package included a number of bills modifying California’s housing density bonus, information and reporting rules. The density bonus law was amended to authorize development incentives that encourage 100 percent affordable housing projects (AB 1763). Also, among the new laws, cities are required to establish a central inventory of all surplus government properties (AB 1255). This was previously only required of counties. SB 6 requires the Department of General Services to list inventory sites suitable for development in a database on its website and requires the sites to be included in each local agency’s housing element. AB 1483 makes changes to the Government Code and Health and Safety Code to increase transparency requirements for development project applicants.
  • AB 1743: Certain properties used for affordable housing are now exempt from locally imposed Mello-Roos special taxes. The “welfare exemption” already provided that real property used for charitable purposes – including affordable housing – were not subject to ad valorem property taxes. AB 1743 in effect, extends this exemption to include Mello-Roos taxes.


Safety Elements Must Include Evacuation Routes for Disasters
Under AB 747, each city and county is required to revise the safety element of its general plan to include evacuation routes for fire and geological hazards. The law is in response to the devastating impacts of the 2018 Camp Fire that killed 85 people, due, in part, to an insufficient evacuation of the area.

In order to qualify for federal disaster funding, cities and counties must adopt a local hazard mitigation plan every 5 years. AB 747 requires that changes to the safety element must occur in the next LHMP revision or after Jan. 1, 2022, or if a jurisdiction has not adopted an LHMP, by Jan. 1, 2022.

Data Restrictions Lifted on Mobile ISP’s for First Responders, Community Outage Isolations
While battling the 2018 Mendocino Complex Fire, fire officials experienced a significant data transmission slowdown of their mobile emergency communications. The data plan was “unlimited” but included a data usage allotment that slowed data speeds once the allotment was exceeded.

Addressing the public safety concerns of such practices, AB 1699 requires mobile Internet service providers to lift data speed restrictions on mobile accounts of first response agencies, upon request, in an emergency, including fires, floods, earthquakes, cyberterrorism and other disasters.

With the passage of SB 670, phone service telecommunications providers that provide access to 911 services must notify the state Office of Emergency Services when an community isolation outage limits a customer’s ability to make 911 calls within 60 minutes of discovering the outage. The provider must also include an estimated time to repair and restore the service.

Water: Mitigating Climate Change, Addressing Stormwater Discharge Compliance

  • AB 65: California voters approved Proposition 68 in 2018 allocating more than $20 million to the California State Coastal Conservancy’s Climate Ready Program. The program is aimed at helping coastal communities adapt to climate change by improving their coastal resources. AB 65 details the projects the SCC must prioritize, including projects that utilize green infrastructure and provide multiple public benefits along the coast. The law also authorizes the SCC to provide technical assistance to coastal communities that use natural infrastructure.
  • SB 205: California cities that issue business licenses will now need to verify if an applicant that conducts a business operation that is a regulated industry is enrolled with the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit program. This applies to all applications for initial business licenses and license renewals submitted on and after Jan. 1, 2020. (The BB&K Legal Alert Cities Issuing Business Licenses Will Need to Verify NPDES Permits First discusses the actions cities will need to take in further detail.)


Fire: Easing the Harmful Effects of Smoke, Preventing Wildland Fires
A growing concern of the Air Resources Board, which oversees the State’s air quality and protects the public from the harmful effects of air pollution, is the health impacts of wildfire smoke exposure.

AB 836 created the Wildfire Smoke Clean Air Centers for the Vulnerable Populations Incentive Pilot Program that will mitigate the harmful effects of smoke by providing grants to retrofit ventilation systems to enhance indoor air quality in community buildings. The effort aims to establish a network of safe wildfire centers.

Under the law, the Board will identify vulnerable populations and strategic locations. Funding for the program is contingent upon appropriation by the Legislature. The new law sunsets on Jan. 1, 2025.

To prevent wildland fires, state and federal laws require electric utility companies to trim or remove trees. The Wildfire Safety Division of the Public Utilities Commission oversees vegetation management in the State and approves/denies wildfire mitigation plans annually submitted by electrical companies. Under SB 247, the vegetation management requirements of an electrical company’s mitigation plan have changed.

Under the new law, the electrical provider must notify the Division after completing a substantial portion of its vegetation management requirements. The Division is required to audit the work and give the company a reasonable time to correct any deficiencies. The report is available to the public.

CEQA: Land Transfers, Community Plans & Permanent Supportive Housing

  • AB 782: This measure codifies a California Environmental Quality Act exemption for the acquisition, sale or other transfer of interest in land by a public agency for the preservation of natural conditions existing at the time of transfer, including plant and animal habitats, among others. The granting or acceptance of funding by a public agency for those purposes is also exempt.
  • AB 1515: The law prohibits a court from attacking, reviewing, setting aside, voiding or annulling the acts of a local agency, including a charter city, in the approval of a development project that meets certain requirements on the basis that the agency did not comply with CEQA when adopting an update to its community plan. While the provisions remain in effect until Jan. 1, 2025, their repeal will not affect any right or immunity granted to a development project that meets the specified requirements before that date.
  • SB 744: In 2016, California voters passed the “No Place Like Home” Program allocating $2 billion in bonds to counties to develop supportive housing for the homeless and seriously mental ill. This was followed by AB 2162 in 2018 that streamlined the process for supportive housing developments. The passage of SB 744 takes this process further by precluding CEQA review in some instances. The law specifies that a public agency’s decision to seek funding from — or the Department of Housing and Community Development’s award for — the NPLH is not a project requiring CEQA review. If a NPLH project isn’t eligible for approval as a use by right, the lead agency must prepare and certify the record of a proceeding for the environmental review.


Part One of this two-part series focused on the recent legislation that brought changes to election, campaign finance and other local government laws.

This article first appeared in PublicCEO.com on Feb. 12, 2020. Republished with permission.

[View source.]

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Best Best & Krieger LLP | Attorney Advertising

Written by:

Best Best & Krieger LLP
Contact
more
less

Best Best & Krieger LLP on:

Readers' Choice 2017
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:
*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.
Custom Email Digest
- hide

JD Supra Privacy Policy

Updated: May 25, 2018:

JD Supra is a legal publishing service that connects experts and their content with broader audiences of professionals, journalists and associations.

This Privacy Policy describes how JD Supra, LLC ("JD Supra" or "we," "us," or "our") collects, uses and shares personal data collected from visitors to our website (located at www.jdsupra.com) (our "Website") who view only publicly-available content as well as subscribers to our services (such as our email digests or author tools)(our "Services"). By using our Website and registering for one of our Services, you are agreeing to the terms of this Privacy Policy.

Please note that if you subscribe to one of our Services, you can make choices about how we collect, use and share your information through our Privacy Center under the "My Account" dashboard (available if you are logged into your JD Supra account).

Collection of Information

Registration Information. When you register with JD Supra for our Website and Services, either as an author or as a subscriber, you will be asked to provide identifying information to create your JD Supra account ("Registration Data"), such as your:

  • Email
  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Company Name
  • Company Industry
  • Title
  • Country

Other Information: We also collect other information you may voluntarily provide. This may include content you provide for publication. We may also receive your communications with others through our Website and Services (such as contacting an author through our Website) or communications directly with us (such as through email, feedback or other forms or social media). If you are a subscribed user, we will also collect your user preferences, such as the types of articles you would like to read.

Information from third parties (such as, from your employer or LinkedIn): We may also receive information about you from third party sources. For example, your employer may provide your information to us, such as in connection with an article submitted by your employer for publication. If you choose to use LinkedIn to subscribe to our Website and Services, we also collect information related to your LinkedIn account and profile.

Your interactions with our Website and Services: As is true of most websites, we gather certain information automatically. This information includes IP addresses, browser type, Internet service provider (ISP), referring/exit pages, operating system, date/time stamp and clickstream data. We use this information to analyze trends, to administer the Website and our Services, to improve the content and performance of our Website and Services, and to track users' movements around the site. We may also link this automatically-collected data to personal information, for example, to inform authors about who has read their articles. Some of this data is collected through information sent by your web browser. We also use cookies and other tracking technologies to collect this information. To learn more about cookies and other tracking technologies that JD Supra may use on our Website and Services please see our "Cookies Guide" page.

How do we use this information?

We use the information and data we collect principally in order to provide our Website and Services. More specifically, we may use your personal information to:

  • Operate our Website and Services and publish content;
  • Distribute content to you in accordance with your preferences as well as to provide other notifications to you (for example, updates about our policies and terms);
  • Measure readership and usage of the Website and Services;
  • Communicate with you regarding your questions and requests;
  • Authenticate users and to provide for the safety and security of our Website and Services;
  • Conduct research and similar activities to improve our Website and Services; and
  • Comply with our legal and regulatory responsibilities and to enforce our rights.

How is your information shared?

  • Content and other public information (such as an author profile) is shared on our Website and Services, including via email digests and social media feeds, and is accessible to the general public.
  • If you choose to use our Website and Services to communicate directly with a company or individual, such communication may be shared accordingly.
  • Readership information is provided to publishing law firms and authors of content to give them insight into their readership and to help them to improve their content.
  • Our Website may offer you the opportunity to share information through our Website, such as through Facebook's "Like" or Twitter's "Tweet" button. We offer this functionality to help generate interest in our Website and content and to permit you to recommend content to your contacts. You should be aware that sharing through such functionality may result in information being collected by the applicable social media network and possibly being made publicly available (for example, through a search engine). Any such information collection would be subject to such third party social media network's privacy policy.
  • Your information may also be shared to parties who support our business, such as professional advisors as well as web-hosting providers, analytics providers and other information technology providers.
  • Any court, governmental authority, law enforcement agency or other third party where we believe disclosure is necessary to comply with a legal or regulatory obligation, or otherwise to protect our rights, the rights of any third party or individuals' personal safety, or to detect, prevent, or otherwise address fraud, security or safety issues.
  • To our affiliated entities and in connection with the sale, assignment or other transfer of our company or our business.

How We Protect Your Information

JD Supra takes reasonable and appropriate precautions to insure that user information is protected from loss, misuse and unauthorized access, disclosure, alteration and destruction. We restrict access to user information to those individuals who reasonably need access to perform their job functions, such as our third party email service, customer service personnel and technical staff. You should keep in mind that no Internet transmission is ever 100% secure or error-free. Where you use log-in credentials (usernames, passwords) on our Website, please remember that it is your responsibility to safeguard them. If you believe that your log-in credentials have been compromised, please contact us at privacy@jdsupra.com.

Children's Information

Our Website and Services are not directed at children under the age of 16 and we do not knowingly collect personal information from children under the age of 16 through our Website and/or Services. If you have reason to believe that a child under the age of 16 has provided personal information to us, please contact us, and we will endeavor to delete that information from our databases.

Links to Other Websites

Our Website and Services may contain links to other websites. The operators of such other websites may collect information about you, including through cookies or other technologies. If you are using our Website or Services and click a link to another site, you will leave our Website and this Policy will not apply to your use of and activity on those other sites. We encourage you to read the legal notices posted on those sites, including their privacy policies. We are not responsible for the data collection and use practices of such other sites. This Policy applies solely to the information collected in connection with your use of our Website and Services and does not apply to any practices conducted offline or in connection with any other websites.

Information for EU and Swiss Residents

JD Supra's principal place of business is in the United States. By subscribing to our website, you expressly consent to your information being processed in the United States.

  • Our Legal Basis for Processing: Generally, we rely on our legitimate interests in order to process your personal information. For example, we rely on this legal ground if we use your personal information to manage your Registration Data and administer our relationship with you; to deliver our Website and Services; understand and improve our Website and Services; report reader analytics to our authors; to personalize your experience on our Website and Services; and where necessary to protect or defend our or another's rights or property, or to detect, prevent, or otherwise address fraud, security, safety or privacy issues. Please see Article 6(1)(f) of the E.U. General Data Protection Regulation ("GDPR") In addition, there may be other situations where other grounds for processing may exist, such as where processing is a result of legal requirements (GDPR Article 6(1)(c)) or for reasons of public interest (GDPR Article 6(1)(e)). Please see the "Your Rights" section of this Privacy Policy immediately below for more information about how you may request that we limit or refrain from processing your personal information.
  • Your Rights
    • Right of Access/Portability: You can ask to review details about the information we hold about you and how that information has been used and disclosed. Note that we may request to verify your identification before fulfilling your request. You can also request that your personal information is provided to you in a commonly used electronic format so that you can share it with other organizations.
    • Right to Correct Information: You may ask that we make corrections to any information we hold, if you believe such correction to be necessary.
    • Right to Restrict Our Processing or Erasure of Information: You also have the right in certain circumstances to ask us to restrict processing of your personal information or to erase your personal information. Where you have consented to our use of your personal information, you can withdraw your consent at any time.

You can make a request to exercise any of these rights by emailing us at privacy@jdsupra.com or by writing to us at:

Privacy Officer
JD Supra, LLC
10 Liberty Ship Way, Suite 300
Sausalito, California 94965

You can also manage your profile and subscriptions through our Privacy Center under the "My Account" dashboard.

We will make all practical efforts to respect your wishes. There may be times, however, where we are not able to fulfill your request, for example, if applicable law prohibits our compliance. Please note that JD Supra does not use "automatic decision making" or "profiling" as those terms are defined in the GDPR.

  • Timeframe for retaining your personal information: We will retain your personal information in a form that identifies you only for as long as it serves the purpose(s) for which it was initially collected as stated in this Privacy Policy, or subsequently authorized. We may continue processing your personal information for longer periods, but only for the time and to the extent such processing reasonably serves the purposes of archiving in the public interest, journalism, literature and art, scientific or historical research and statistical analysis, and subject to the protection of this Privacy Policy. For example, if you are an author, your personal information may continue to be published in connection with your article indefinitely. When we have no ongoing legitimate business need to process your personal information, we will either delete or anonymize it, or, if this is not possible (for example, because your personal information has been stored in backup archives), then we will securely store your personal information and isolate it from any further processing until deletion is possible.
  • Onward Transfer to Third Parties: As noted in the "How We Share Your Data" Section above, JD Supra may share your information with third parties. When JD Supra discloses your personal information to third parties, we have ensured that such third parties have either certified under the EU-U.S. or Swiss Privacy Shield Framework and will process all personal data received from EU member states/Switzerland in reliance on the applicable Privacy Shield Framework or that they have been subjected to strict contractual provisions in their contract with us to guarantee an adequate level of data protection for your data.

California Privacy Rights

Pursuant to Section 1798.83 of the California Civil Code, our customers who are California residents have the right to request certain information regarding our disclosure of personal information to third parties for their direct marketing purposes.

You can make a request for this information by emailing us at privacy@jdsupra.com or by writing to us at:

Privacy Officer
JD Supra, LLC
10 Liberty Ship Way, Suite 300
Sausalito, California 94965

Some browsers have incorporated a Do Not Track (DNT) feature. These features, when turned on, send a signal that you prefer that the website you are visiting not collect and use data regarding your online searching and browsing activities. As there is not yet a common understanding on how to interpret the DNT signal, we currently do not respond to DNT signals on our site.

Access/Correct/Update/Delete Personal Information

For non-EU/Swiss residents, if you would like to know what personal information we have about you, you can send an e-mail to privacy@jdsupra.com. We will be in contact with you (by mail or otherwise) to verify your identity and provide you the information you request. We will respond within 30 days to your request for access to your personal information. In some cases, we may not be able to remove your personal information, in which case we will let you know if we are unable to do so and why. If you would like to correct or update your personal information, you can manage your profile and subscriptions through our Privacy Center under the "My Account" dashboard. If you would like to delete your account or remove your information from our Website and Services, send an e-mail to privacy@jdsupra.com.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

We reserve the right to change this Privacy Policy at any time. Please refer to the date at the top of this page to determine when this Policy was last revised. Any changes to our Privacy Policy will become effective upon posting of the revised policy on the Website. By continuing to use our Website and Services following such changes, you will be deemed to have agreed to such changes.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about this Privacy Policy, the practices of this site, your dealings with our Website or Services, or if you would like to change any of the information you have provided to us, please contact us at: privacy@jdsupra.com.

JD Supra Cookie Guide

As with many websites, JD Supra's website (located at www.jdsupra.com) (our "Website") and our services (such as our email article digests)(our "Services") use a standard technology called a "cookie" and other similar technologies (such as, pixels and web beacons), which are small data files that are transferred to your computer when you use our Website and Services. These technologies automatically identify your browser whenever you interact with our Website and Services.

How We Use Cookies and Other Tracking Technologies

We use cookies and other tracking technologies to:

  1. Improve the user experience on our Website and Services;
  2. Store the authorization token that users receive when they login to the private areas of our Website. This token is specific to a user's login session and requires a valid username and password to obtain. It is required to access the user's profile information, subscriptions, and analytics;
  3. Track anonymous site usage; and
  4. Permit connectivity with social media networks to permit content sharing.

There are different types of cookies and other technologies used our Website, notably:

  • "Session cookies" - These cookies only last as long as your online session, and disappear from your computer or device when you close your browser (like Internet Explorer, Google Chrome or Safari).
  • "Persistent cookies" - These cookies stay on your computer or device after your browser has been closed and last for a time specified in the cookie. We use persistent cookies when we need to know who you are for more than one browsing session. For example, we use them to remember your preferences for the next time you visit.
  • "Web Beacons/Pixels" - Some of our web pages and emails may also contain small electronic images known as web beacons, clear GIFs or single-pixel GIFs. These images are placed on a web page or email and typically work in conjunction with cookies to collect data. We use these images to identify our users and user behavior, such as counting the number of users who have visited a web page or acted upon one of our email digests.

JD Supra Cookies. We place our own cookies on your computer to track certain information about you while you are using our Website and Services. For example, we place a session cookie on your computer each time you visit our Website. We use these cookies to allow you to log-in to your subscriber account. In addition, through these cookies we are able to collect information about how you use the Website, including what browser you may be using, your IP address, and the URL address you came from upon visiting our Website and the URL you next visit (even if those URLs are not on our Website). We also utilize email web beacons to monitor whether our emails are being delivered and read. We also use these tools to help deliver reader analytics to our authors to give them insight into their readership and help them to improve their content, so that it is most useful for our users.

Analytics/Performance Cookies. JD Supra also uses the following analytic tools to help us analyze the performance of our Website and Services as well as how visitors use our Website and Services:

  • HubSpot - For more information about HubSpot cookies, please visit legal.hubspot.com/privacy-policy.
  • New Relic - For more information on New Relic cookies, please visit www.newrelic.com/privacy.
  • Google Analytics - For more information on Google Analytics cookies, visit www.google.com/policies. To opt-out of being tracked by Google Analytics across all websites visit http://tools.google.com/dlpage/gaoptout. This will allow you to download and install a Google Analytics cookie-free web browser.

Facebook, Twitter and other Social Network Cookies. Our content pages allow you to share content appearing on our Website and Services to your social media accounts through the "Like," "Tweet," or similar buttons displayed on such pages. To accomplish this Service, we embed code that such third party social networks provide and that we do not control. These buttons know that you are logged in to your social network account and therefore such social networks could also know that you are viewing the JD Supra Website.

Controlling and Deleting Cookies

If you would like to change how a browser uses cookies, including blocking or deleting cookies from the JD Supra Website and Services you can do so by changing the settings in your web browser. To control cookies, most browsers allow you to either accept or reject all cookies, only accept certain types of cookies, or prompt you every time a site wishes to save a cookie. It's also easy to delete cookies that are already saved on your device by a browser.

The processes for controlling and deleting cookies vary depending on which browser you use. To find out how to do so with a particular browser, you can use your browser's "Help" function or alternatively, you can visit http://www.aboutcookies.org which explains, step-by-step, how to control and delete cookies in most browsers.

Updates to This Policy

We may update this cookie policy and our Privacy Policy from time-to-time, particularly as technology changes. You can always check this page for the latest version. We may also notify you of changes to our privacy policy by email.

Contacting JD Supra

If you have any questions about how we use cookies and other tracking technologies, please contact us at: privacy@jdsupra.com.

- hide

This website uses cookies to improve user experience, track anonymous site usage, store authorization tokens and permit sharing on social media networks. By continuing to browse this website you accept the use of cookies. Click here to read more about how we use cookies.