Historic Bills Change CA Development Laws Part 2

Historic Bills Change CA Development Laws
Part 2

By: Alexandra M. Jack, Esq. and Meghan M. Dunnagan, Esq.

October 13, 2021

Continuing our series discussing the recently approved Senate Bills (SB) 9 and 10, this post will provide information on the second Government Code section added by SB 9. If you missed the first blog in this three-part series, you can find it here.

Senate Bill 9 – Government Code § 66411.7

Government Code § 66411.7 now allows a property owner to split their parcel into two. This code section permits ministerial approval for lot splitting, and bypasses the CEQA and Coastal Act of 1976 processes, similar to the code section discussed in the previous blog.1 To qualify for a ministerial approval, the proposed parcel split must meet several criteria, including:

(1) neither parcel created by the split can be smaller than 40% of the original parcel;

(2) each parcel size must be a minimum of 1,200 sf, (government agencies can adopt smaller minimum lot sizes at its discretion);

(3) the parcel cannot contain existing low-income housing, be covered by a rent control ordinance, or be occupied by a tenant;

(4) land within a historic district (one that is included on the State Historic Resources Inventory, or one that is within a county/city landmark or historic property or district) cannot be split;

(5) a parcel that has already been through the parcel splitting process or a parcel where the adjacent parcel has the same owner and said adjacent parcel has already been split, cannot be split;

(6) the property owner must occupy one of the resulting parcels for a minimum of three (3) years;

(7) the rental term of an additional unit must be longer than 30 days; and

(8) parcels cannot be split to create new commercial or office buildings.1

The new code section regulating parcel splitting has additional exemptions to the standard development process. First, the government agency cannot require conditions of approval as part of a ministerial parcel split that meets all of the applicable criteria.1 Second, if the parcel has an existing nonconforming status, the nonconforming status does not have to be brought to a conforming status for approval of the parcel split.1 Lastly, a duplex is permitted on each parcel zoned for single-family residence.1 Thus, if a property owner splits his or her property and builds a duplex on the resulting parcels, a total of four market-rate units are permissible on land that would otherwise allow only one single-family home.

Stay tuned for future articles in this series as we discuss SB 10, look at the major arguments in support and opposition of these two (2) new Senate Bills, and talk about overlap with existing laws such as those regarding accessory dwelling units (ADUs).

The information presented in this Article is not to be taken as legal advice. Every person’s situation is different. If you are facing a legal issue of any kind, get competent legal advice in your State immediately so that you can determine your best options.

Source Notes
1 Senate Bill 9

Recent and Popular Articles From Our Blog:

2020 Blogs:

2021 Blogs: