BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                       



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          |SENATE RULES COMMITTEE            |                  SB 1319|
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                                 THIRD READING


          Bill No:  SB 1319
          Author:   Pavley (D)
          Amended:  4/13/10
          Vote:     21

           
           SENATE LOCAL GOVERNMENT COMMITTEE  :  4-1, 4/19/10
          AYES:  Aanestad, Kehoe, DeSaulnier, Price
          NOES:  Cox


           SUBJECT  :    Subdivisions:  contiguous parcels:  merger

           SOURCE  :     Author


           DIGEST  :    This bill allows a city council or county board  
          of supervisors to adopt a local ordinance that lets the  
          owner of contiguous parcels merge them, without complying  
          with the Subdivision Map Act's provisions, by recording an  
          instrument of conveyance or security.

           ANALYSIS  :    The Subdivision Map Act controls how local  
          officials approve property owners' proposals to create  
          smaller lots out of larger parcels.  The Map Act also  
          describes several methods for reversing that process,  
          including reversions to acreage, resubdivisions, local  
          options, and parcel merger.

           Reversion to acreage  .  Either the property owner or the  
          city or county can start proceedings to revert subdivided  
          land back to acreage.  The statutory procedures for a  
          reversion require the city council or county board of  
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          supervisors to hold a publicly noticed hearing and make  
          findings.

           Resubdivision  .  As an alternative to reversion, a city  
          council or county board of supervisors can adopt an  
          ordinance that allows property owners to resubdivide their  
          property by filing new parcel maps or new tentative  
          subdivision maps.  This procedure results in merging  
          formerly separate lots without reverting them to acreage.

           Local option  .  Another alternative allows a city council or  
          county board of supervisors to adopt an ordinance that  
          allows property owners to merge contiguous parcels that are  
          under common ownership, requiring only the recordation of a  
          merger document.

           Merger  .  The merger of previously subdivided parcels is a  
          formal proceeding that requires the city council or county  
          board of supervisors to adopt an ordinance that spells out  
          the conditions under which the city or county can force the  
          merger of contiguous parcels under the same ownership.  At  
          least one of the affected parcels must be undeveloped,  
          developed with only an accessory structure, or developed  
          with a structure that straddles the property lines.  One of  
          the parcels must meet at least one of seven named  
          conditions.  Before local officials can order a merger,  
          there must be publicly noticed hearings.

          This bill allows a city council or county board of  
          supervisors to adopt a local ordinance that lets the owner  
          of contiguous parcels merge them, without complying with  
          the Map Act's provisions, by recording an instrument of  
          conveyance or security.

           Comments  

          At an interim hearing in 1986, the Senate Local Government  
          Committee reviewed "California's Hidden Land Use Problem:   
          The Redevelopment of Antiquated Subdivisions."  Legislators  
          learned that local officials had created more than 400,000  
          parcels that were still vacant, but "too small, too remote,  
          or too dangerous to build on."  Private investors explained  
          the difficulties they faced in assembling parcels and  
          resubdividing them into marketable lots.  A subsequent  

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          proposal to enact a bold "land readjustment law" failed,  
          but legislators made other statutory improvements.

          Electrical utilities, both investor owned and public  
          agencies, want to expand their capacity to generate  
          electricity from renewable sources, including solar and  
          wind energy.  Commercial scale alternative energy  
          generating facilities often require large pieces of flat  
          property near existing power lines.  Conservationists want  
          to discourage alternative energy facilities from locating  
          on productive farmland or desert habitat.  They want to  
          find alternative locations that would be suitable without  
          further disturbing habitat or agricultural land.  Combining  
          the unbuildable lots in antiquated subdivisions could  
          create these sites.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :    Appropriation:  No   Fiscal Com.:  No    
          Local:  No

           SUPPORT  :   (Verified  4/20/10)

          The Nature Conservancy


          AGB:mw  4/20/10   Senate Floor Analyses 

                         SUPPORT/OPPOSITION:  SEE ABOVE

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