BILL NUMBER: AB 2557	AMENDED
	BILL TEXT

	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  MAY 25, 2012
	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  MAY 1, 2012
	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  MARCH 29, 2012

INTRODUCED BY   Assembly Member Feuer

                        FEBRUARY 24, 2012

   An act to  amend Section 2929.3 of   add and
repeal S   ection 2929.35 of  the Civil Code, and to
amend Section 17980.7 of the Health and Safety Code, relating to real
property.



	LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


   AB 2557, as amended, Feuer. Real property: maintenance and
abatement.
   Existing law, until January 1, 2013, requires a legal owner to
maintain vacant residential property purchased or acquired through
foreclosure. Existing law also authorizes a governmental entity to
impose civil fines for failure to maintain that property of up to
$1,000 per day for a violation, after notice and an opportunity to
correct the violation is given.
   This bill would  , until January 1, 2016,  authorize a
person whose property  is in Los Angeles County and who  is
injuriously affected or whose enjoyment is lessened by a property
owner's violation of those property maintenance provisions to bring
an action for injunctive relief. The bill would require a person who
seeks an injunction to provide the legal owner by mail a written
description of the conditions that gave rise to the violation, and
identify the person's intent to seek an injunction if action to
correct the violation is not commenced and completed within a
specified period of time. The bill would authorize an action to be
brought either in a small claims court or  superior court
within the county in which the property is situated.  
the Superior Court of Los Angeles County.  The bill would also
authorize a prevailing plaintiff to recover court costs and
reasonable attorney's fees if the action is brought in  the 
superior court.
   Existing law provides for abatement of substandard conditions in
buildings and authorizes an enforcement agency to issue an order or
notice to repair or abate violations of specified building standards.
Under existing law, if the owner of a property with substandard
conditions fails to comply within a reasonable time period with the
terms of the order or notice, the enforcement agency, tenant, or
tenant association or organization may seek, and the court may order,
the appointment of a receiver for the substandard building.
   This bill would also authorize any district attorney, county
counsel, or city attorney with jurisdiction over the substandard
building, acting in the name of the people, to seek a court order for
the appointment of a receiver for the substandard building.
   Vote: majority. Appropriation: no. Fiscal committee: no.
State-mandated local program: no.


THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:
   
  SECTION 1.    Section 2929.3 of the Civil Code is
amended to read:
   2929.3.  (a) (1) A legal owner shall maintain vacant residential
property purchased by that owner at a foreclosure sale, or acquired
by that owner through foreclosure under a mortgage or deed of trust.
A governmental entity may impose a civil fine of up to one thousand
dollars ($1,000) per day for a violation. If the governmental entity
chooses to impose a fine pursuant to this section, it shall give
notice of the alleged violation, including a description of the
conditions that gave rise to the allegation, and notice of the entity'
s intent to assess a civil fine if action to correct the violation is
not commenced within a period of not less than 14 days and completed
within a period of not less than 30 days. The notice shall be mailed
to the address provided in the deed or other instrument as specified
in subdivision (a) of Section 27321.5 of the Government Code, or, if
none, to the return address provided on the deed or other
instrument.
   (2) The governmental entity shall provide a period of not less
than 30 days for the legal owner to remedy the violation prior to
imposing a civil fine and shall allow for a hearing and opportunity
to contest any fine imposed. In determining the amount of the fine,
the governmental entity shall take into consideration any timely and
good faith efforts by the legal owner to remedy the violation. The
maximum civil fine authorized by this section is one thousand dollars
($1,000) for each day that the owner fails to maintain the property,
commencing on the day following the expiration of the period to
remedy the violation established by the governmental entity.
   (3) Subject to the provisions of this section, a governmental
entity may establish different compliance periods for different
conditions on the same property in the notice of alleged violation
mailed to the legal owner.
   (b) A legal owner who fails to maintain a vacant residential
property in violation of paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) shall be
subject to an action for injunctive relief brought by any person
whose property is injuriously affected, or whose personal enjoyment
is lessened, by the property owner's violation. A person who seeks an
injunction pursuant to this subdivision shall provide the legal
owner a written description of the conditions that gave rise to the
violation and identify the person's intent to seek an injunction if
action to correct the violation is not commenced within a period of
not less than 14 days, and completed within a period of not less than
30 days, which shall be mailed to the address provided in the deed
or other instrument as specified in subdivision (a) of Section
27321.5 of the Government Code, or, if none, to the return address
provided on the deed or other instrument. An action brought pursuant
to this subdivision may be brought either in a small claims court or
the superior court of the county in which the property is situated.
If the action is brought in superior court, a prevailing plaintiff
may recover court costs and reasonable attorney's fees.
   (c) For purposes of this section, "failure to maintain" means
failure to care for the exterior of the property, including, but not
limited to, permitting excessive foliage growth that diminishes the
value of surrounding properties, failing to take action to prevent
trespassers or squatters from remaining on the property, or failing
to take action to prevent mosquito larvae from growing in standing
water or other conditions that create a public nuisance.
   (d) Notwithstanding subdivisions (a) and (c), a governmental
entity may provide less than 30 days' notice to remedy a condition
before imposing a civil fine if the entity determines that a specific
condition of the property threatens public health or safety and
provided that notice of that determination and time for compliance is
given.
   (e) Fines and penalties collected pursuant to this section shall
be directed to local nuisance abatement programs.
   (f) A governmental entity may not impose fines on a legal owner
under both this section and a local ordinance.
   (g) These provisions shall not preempt any local ordinance.
   (h) This section shall only apply to residential real property.
   (i) The rights and remedies provided in this section are
cumulative and in addition to any other rights and remedies provided
by law.
   (j) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1,
2013, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted
statute, that is enacted before January 1, 2013, deletes or extends
that date. 
   SECTION 1.    Section 2929.35 is added to the 
 Civil Code   , to read:  
   2929.35.  (a) A legal owner who fails to maintain, as defined by
subdivision (b) of former Section 2929.3, a vacant residential
property in Los Angeles County purchased by that owner at a
foreclosure sale, or acquired by that owner through foreclosure under
a mortgage or deed of trust, shall be subject to an action for
injunctive relief brought by any person whose property is injuriously
affected, or whose personal enjoyment is lessened, by the property
owner's violation.
   (b) A person who seeks an injunction pursuant to this section
shall provide the legal owner a written description of the conditions
that gave rise to the violation and identify the person's intent to
seek an injunction if action to correct the violation is not
commenced within a period of not less than 14 days, and completed
within a period of not less than 30 days, which shall be mailed to
the address provided in the deed or other instrument, as specified in
subdivision (a) of Section 27321.5 of the Government Code, or, if
none, to the return address provided on the deed or other instrument.

   (c) An action brought pursuant to this section may be brought
either in a small claims court or the Superior Court of Los Angeles
County. If the action is brought in superior court, a prevailing
plaintiff may recover court costs and reasonable attorney's fees.
   (d) This section shall remain in effect only until January 1,
2016, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted
statute, that is enacted before January 1, 2016, deletes or extends
that date. 
  SEC. 2.  Section 17980.7 of the Health and Safety Code is amended
to read:
   17980.7.  If the owner fails to comply within a reasonable time
with the terms of the order or notice issued pursuant to Section
17980.6, the following provisions shall apply:
   (a) The enforcement agency may seek and the court may order
imposition of the penalties provided for under Chapter 6 (commencing
with Section 17995).
   (b) (1) The enforcement agency may seek and the court may order
the owner to not claim any deduction with respect to state taxes for
interest, taxes, expenses, depreciation, or amortization paid or
incurred with respect to the cited structure, in the taxable year of
the initial order or notice, in lieu of the enforcement agency
processing a violation in accordance with Sections 17274 and 24436.5
of the Revenue and Taxation Code.
   (2) If the owner fails to comply with the terms of the order or
notice to correct the condition that caused the violation pursuant to
Section 17980.6, the court may order the owner to not claim these
tax benefits for the following year.
   (c) The enforcement agency, tenant, tenant association or
organization, or any district attorney, county counsel, or city
attorney with jurisdiction over the substandard building, acting in
the name of the people, may seek and the court may order, the
appointment of a receiver for the substandard building pursuant to
this subdivision. In its petition to the court, the enforcement
agency, tenant, tenant association or organization, or any district
attorney, county counsel, or city attorney with jurisdiction over the
substandard building shall include proof that notice of the petition
was served not less than three days prior to filing the petition,
pursuant to Article 3 (commencing with Section 415.10) of Chapter 4
of Title 5 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure, to all persons
with a recorded interest in the real property upon which the
substandard building exists.
   (1) In appointing a receiver, the court shall consider whether the
owner has been afforded a reasonable opportunity to correct the
conditions cited in the notice of violation.
   (2) The court shall not appoint any person as a receiver unless
the person has demonstrated to the court his or her capacity and
expertise to develop and supervise a viable financial and
construction plan for the satisfactory rehabilitation of the
building. A court may appoint as a receiver a nonprofit organization
or community development corporation. In addition to the duties and
powers that may be granted pursuant to this section, the nonprofit
organization or community development corporation may also apply for
grants to assist in the rehabilitation of the building.
   (3) If a receiver is appointed, the owner and his or her agent of
the substandard building shall be enjoined from collecting rents from
the tenants, interfering with the receiver in the operation of the
substandard building, and encumbering or transferring the substandard
building or real property upon which the building is situated.
   (4) Any receiver appointed pursuant to this section shall have all
of the following powers and duties in the order of priority listed
in this paragraph, unless the court otherwise permits:
   (A) To take full and complete control of the substandard property.

   (B) To manage the substandard building and pay expenses of the
operation of the substandard building and real property upon which
the building is located, including taxes, insurance, utilities,
general maintenance, and debt secured by an interest in the real
property.
   (C) To secure a cost estimate and construction plan from a
licensed contractor for the repairs necessary to correct the
conditions cited in the notice of violation.
   (D) To enter into contracts and employ a licensed contractor as
necessary to correct the conditions cited in the notice of violation.

   (E) To collect all rents and income from the substandard building.

   (F) To use all rents and income from the substandard building to
pay for the cost of rehabilitation and repairs determined by the
court as necessary to correct the conditions cited in the notice of
violation.
   (G) To borrow funds to pay for repairs necessary to correct the
conditions cited in the notice of violation and to borrow funds to
pay for any relocation benefits authorized by paragraph (6) and, with
court approval, secure that debt and any moneys owed to the receiver
for services performed pursuant to this section with a lien on the
real property upon which the substandard building is located. The
lien shall be recorded in the county recorder's office in the county
within which the building is located.
   (H) To exercise the powers granted to receivers under Section 568
of the Code of Civil Procedure.
   (5) The receiver shall be entitled to the same fees, commissions,
and necessary expenses as receivers in actions to foreclose
mortgages.
   (6) If the conditions of the premises or the repair or
rehabilitation thereof significantly affect the safe and sanitary use
of the substandard building by any tenant, to the extent that the
tenant cannot safely reside in his or her unit, then the receiver
shall provide relocation benefits in accordance with subparagraph (A)
of paragraph (3) of subdivision (d).
   (7) The relocation compensation provided for in this section shall
not preempt any local ordinance that provides for greater relocation
assistance.
   (8) In addition to any reporting required by the court, the
receiver shall prepare monthly reports to the state or local
enforcement agency which shall contain information on at least the
following items:
   (A) The total amount of rent payments received.
   (B) Nature and amount of contracts negotiated relative to the
operation or repair of the property.
   (C) Payments made toward the repair of the premises.
   (D) Progress of necessary repairs.
   (E) Other payments made relative to the operation of the building.

   (F) Amount of tenant relocation benefits paid.
   (9) The receiver shall be discharged when the conditions cited in
the notice of violation have been remedied in accordance with the
court order or judgment and a complete accounting of all costs and
repairs has been delivered to the court. Upon removal of the
condition, the owner, the mortgagee, or any lienor of record may
apply for the discharge of all moneys not used by the receiver for
removal of the condition and all other costs authorized by this
section.
   (10) After discharging the receiver, the court may retain
jurisdiction for a time period not to exceed 18 consecutive months,
and require the owner and the enforcement agency responsible for
enforcing Section 17980 to report to the court in accordance with a
schedule determined by the court.
   (11) The prevailing party in an action pursuant to this section
shall be entitled to reasonable attorney's fees and court costs as
may be fixed by the court.
   (12) The county recorder may charge and collect fees for the
recording of all notices and other documents required by this section
pursuant to Article 5 (commencing with Section 27360) of Chapter 6
of Division 2 of Title 3 of the Government Code.
   (13) Nothing in this section shall be construed to limit those
rights available to tenants and owners under any other provision of
the law.
   (14) Nothing in this section shall be construed to deprive an
owner of a substandard building of all procedural due process rights
guaranteed by the California Constitution and the United States
Constitution, including, but not limited to, receipt of notice of the
violation claimed and an adequate and reasonable period of time to
comply with any orders which are issued by the enforcement agency or
the court.
   (d) If the court finds that a building is in a condition which
substantially endangers the health and safety of residents pursuant
to Section 17980.6, upon the entry of any order or judgment, the
court shall do all of the following:
   (1) Order the owner to pay all reasonable and actual costs of the
enforcement agency including, but not limited to, inspection costs,
investigation costs, enforcement costs, attorney fees or costs, and
all costs of prosecution.
   (2) Order that the local enforcement agency shall provide the
tenant with notice of the court order or judgment.
   (3) (A) Order that if the owner undertakes repairs or
rehabilitation as a result of being cited for a notice under this
chapter, and if the conditions of the premises or the repair or
rehabilitation thereof significantly affect the safe and sanitary use
of the premises by any lawful tenant, so that the tenant cannot
safely reside in the premises, then the owner shall provide or pay
relocation benefits to each lawful tenant. These benefits shall
consist of actual reasonable moving and storage costs and relocation
compensation. The actual moving and storage costs shall consist of
all of the following:
   (i) Transportation of the tenant's personal property to the new
location. The new location shall be in close proximity to the
substandard premises, except where relocation to a new location
beyond a close proximity is determined by the court to be justified.
   (ii) Packing, crating, unpacking, and uncrating the tenant's
personal property.
   (iii) Insurance of the tenant's property while in transit.
   (iv) The reasonable replacement value of property lost, stolen, or
damaged (not through the fault or negligence of the displaced
person, his or her agent or employee) in the process of moving, where
insurance covering the loss, theft, or damage is not reasonably
available.
   (v) The cost of disconnecting, dismantling, removing,
reassembling, reconnecting, and reinstalling machinery, equipment, or
other personal property of the tenant, including connection charges
imposed by utility companies for starting utility service.
   (B) (i) The relocation compensation shall be an amount equal to
the differential between the contract rent and the fair market rental
value determined by the federal Department of Housing and Urban
Development for a unit of comparable size within the area for the
period that the unit is being repaired, not to exceed 120 days.
   (ii) If the court finds that a tenant has been substantially
responsible for causing or substantially contributing to the
substandard conditions, then the relocation benefits of this section
shall not be paid to this tenant. Each other tenant on the premises
who has been ordered to relocate due to the substandard conditions
and who is not substantially responsible for causing or contributing
to the conditions shall be paid these benefits and moving costs at
the time that he or she actually relocates.
   (4) Determine the date when the tenant is to relocate, and order
the tenant to notify the enforcement agency and the owner of the
address of the premises to which he or she has relocated within five
days after the relocation.
   (5) (A) Order that the owner shall offer the first right to
occupancy of the premises to each tenant who received benefits
pursuant to subparagraph (A) of paragraph (3), before letting the
unit for rent to a third party. The owner's offer on the first right
to occupancy to the tenant shall be in writing, and sent by
first-class certified mail to the address given by the tenant at the
time of relocation. If the owner has not been provided the tenant's
address by the tenant as prescribed by this section, the owner shall
not be required to provide notice under this section or offer the
tenant the right to return to occupancy.
   (B) The tenant shall notify the owner in writing that he or she
will occupy the unit. The notice shall be sent by first-class
certified mail no later than 10 days after the notice has been mailed
by the owner.
   (6) Order that failure to comply with any abatement order under
this chapter shall be punishable by civil contempt, penalties under
Chapter 6 (commencing with Section 17995), and any other penalties
and fines as are available.
   (e) The initiation of a proceeding or entry of a judgment pursuant
to this section or Section 17980.6 shall be deemed to be a
"proceeding" or "judgment" as provided by paragraph (4) or (5) of
subdivision (a) of Section 1942.5 of the Civil Code.
   (f) The term "owner," for the purposes of this section, shall
include the owner, including any public entity that owns residential
real property, at the time of the initial notice or order and any
successor in interest who had actual or constructive knowledge of the
notice, order, or prosecution.
   (g) These remedies shall be in addition to those provided by any
other law.
   (h) Nothing in this section or in Section 17980.6 shall impair the
rights of an owner exercising his or her rights established pursuant
to Chapter 12.75 (commencing with Section 7060) of Division 7 of
Title 1 of the Government Code.