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Central Coast Section News

Successful APA Mixer in San Luis Obispo
September 7, 2018

On August 8th, APA and AEP gathered together at Luis Wine Bar in Downtown San Luis Obispo for a joint mixer.  With approximately 30 attendees, the night was a success and was full of great conversation. Thank you to those who came out! Stay tuned for future events!

HCD Announcement: Changes on the Way for Housing Element Annual Progress Reports
September 7, 2018

Issue Date: 8/24/2018
As part of implementation of the 2017 Housing Package, the Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) is preparing changes to the Housing Element Annual Progress Report (APR) form, guidelines, and other materials. We want to share information about these upcoming changes with you and invite your feedback on how HCD can best redesign the APR and accompanying guidelines to collect a more usable and complete picture of housing production in California.


The APR system, which has been in place since 2010, measures both permit progress towards a jurisdiction's Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) and progress in implementing the programs and policies described in that jurisdiction's Housing Element.

What's New

Several bills in the 2017 Housing Package added new requirements and purpose to the APR. SB 35 uses permit progress towards RHNA, as shown by the APR, to determine which jurisdictions are subject to SB 35 permit streamlining. SB 35 also requires all cities - including charter cities, which were previously exempt - to submit APRs. Finally, both SB 35 and AB 879 add new housing data requirements to the APR that will enable a more complete understanding of California's housing pipeline. For a list of these new data requirements, please see the APR Frequently Asked Questions.

How You Can Help

In order to collect this new information, HCD will update the current APR form (both the online submittal system and the Excel form), guidelines, and instructions.
To guide HCD's APR redesign, we invite your feedback on how the existing form and guidance (linked below) can be updated to meet new requirements. The existing materials are:

To share your feedback, please email apr@hcd.ca.gov with "APR 2018 Input" as the subject.

A draft revised form and guidelines will be made available in October, followed by a public comment period and workshops
Thank you for sharing your feedback with HCD. If you have any questions, please contact us at apr@hcd.ca.gov.

Thank you, 
Zachary Olmstead
Deputy Director of Housing Policy Development

Transportation Planning Grants from Caltrans
September 7, 2018 to September 25, 2018


Volunteer Opportunity: National Bike Count/Survey Days in San Luis Obispo
September 7, 2018 to September 15, 2018

SLO Regional “Safety In Numbers” Active Transportation Counts

Attention partners, community activists, and Safe Routes to School champions. Your help is needed at key locations around the San Luis Obispo region to collect bike and pedestrian volume data as part of the official national count days. A short Volunteer Training Session will be held on Monday Sept. 10th 12:30-1pm at SLOCOG offices to overview the counting approach and tally forms packets will be distributed. Once the counts are finished, just return the forms to our office or scan and email. Remember… there is Safety in Numbers!

Dates, Times and Locations

Training Session:

  • Monday, September 10th 12:30-1pm


Official Counting Days (time specific to location):

  • Tuesday, September 11th
  • Wednesday, September 12th
  • Saturday, September 15th


For specific times and locations, see sign-up form: https://www.volunteersignup.org/QJL3M?classic

Interested? Contact John DiNunzio, SLOCOG Transportation Planner, jdinunzio@slocog.org (805) 781-5764

PDF icon National Count - SLOCOG
Grants for Wildfire Planning
September 7, 2018 to October 5, 2018

The U.S. Forest Service provides free planning related to the Wildland-Urban Interface code, such as: recommendations for updated planning policies and regulations, capacity-building trainings for planning staff; local wildfire hazard assessment; guidance on local mitigation plans; research and outreach tools. The funding is open to all local jurisdictions.

Applications are due October 5, 2018. For more information please see flyer or visit the program website at: planningforwildfire.org

PDF icon CPAW_Application_Flyer_2018.pdf
Central Coast Section Announces Planning Academy Dates in Santa Barbara for Fall 2018
September 4, 2018
The Central Coast Section of the American Planning Association has announced meeting dates for its popular Planning Academy series. The Planning Academy is designed to provide an overview of local government, how it is financed, and the impact of State and Federal laws, environmental policy, and planning issues facing the host County and its cities. The program includes weekly meetings to help participants become more informed, confident and comfortable in participating in local land use planning decisions.
Dates for the 8-week land use planning course are available at centralcoastapa.org/programs. Registration and course curriculum will be made available shortly, but be sure to save the dates!
State's Housing Department Using New Authority to Hold Local Governments Accountable to Comply with State Housing Laws
August 10, 2018

The California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) announces its process to hold cities and counties accountable to provide housing opportunities for more Californians. Enforcement powers granted under Assembly Bill 72 (Santiago, 2017) clarify HCD's authority to review a city's or county's compliance with state housing laws and revoke their finding of housing element compliance. HCD can also refer issues of noncompliance by a local government with this and other housing laws - such as the Housing Accountability Act and State Density Bonus Law - to the State Office of the Attorney General.
In this 5-minute video, Director Ben Metcalf, describes how HCD is implementing its new authority and holding local governments accountable.

HCD Announcement

Central Coast Section Welcomes New Board Members in SLO County
August 10, 2018

The APA’s Central Coast Section is happy to introduce some of our newest board members for the SLO County Sub-Section; Sarah Howland and Spencer Johnson.

Sarah Howland – San Luis Obispo County’s Emerging Planner Representative

Sarah is a proud, third-generation resident of San Luis Obispo County and a Cal Poly alumni. She is currently enrolled as a graduate student for the Masters of City and Regional Planning program at Cal Poly SLO, specializing in environmental planning and community development. She is also currently employed as a Planning Intern for the County of San Luis Obispo’s Planning and Building Department. Sarah is most excited to coordinate networking events that facilitate connections in the planning community as the new Emerging Professional Planners (EPP) Representative for San Luis Obispo County.

Spencer Johnson – APA Central Coast Membership Inclusion Officer

Spencer is an Associate at Lisa Wise Consulting (LWC), Inc., where he focuses on long-range planning, zoning code updates, land use economics, and urban design. He acts as the Deputy Project Manager on several of LWC's national projects and specializes in integrating new urbanist principles into LWC products. Spencer holds a Bachelor of Science degree in City & Regional Planning from Cal Poly and, in addition to his involvement in APA, is actively engaged in the Congress for New Urbanism as an Accredited Professional.

Sarah Howland, APA  Central Coast Section Board Member

Spencer Johnson, APA Central Coast Board Member

Planner Spotlight | Rachel Raynor
July 22, 2018

An Associate Planner I, Raynor specializes in urban design and land planning at RRM Design Group in San Luis Obispo. She graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with a Bachelor of Science in City and Regional Planning. She had the opportunity to stay in SLO after graduating and is cherishing every moment being by the ocean, as she is originally from the Sacramento area. She spends her free time traveling, running, cycling, hiking, surfing, practicing yoga, and drinking lots of coffee. 

Raynor recently became APA Central Coast's Sub-Section for San Luis Obispo County and is bringing events and professional opportunities to SLO County. Be sure to find her at one of SLO's APA events. 

R.Raynor_SLO Sub Section Director

APA California Releases Legislative Update
July 13, 2018

By John Terell, AICP, Vice President Policy and Legislation; Sande George, APA California Lobbyist; and Lauren De Valencia y Sanchez, APA California Lobbyist

Remaining Hot Bills Getting Closer to the Governor’s Desk  

July 6th was the final policy committee deadline and the legislature is out for one month for its summer recess. 2018 has been  another busy year for planning-related legislation, however APA California has been able to successfully amend many of the bills by finding alternatives to the most controversial langauge. The Legislature will return on August 6thfor the final weeks of the 2018 session, which ends on August 31st.
The Governor Signs His Final Budget
On June 27th, Governor Brown signed his final state budget.  The 2018-2019 Budget will leave the state with $16 billion in reserves while still boosting state spending in many areas. Details of interest to planners include:
Saving for Uncertain Times
The state’s Rainy Day Fund, established by a vote of the people in 2014, saves money when the economy is strong for uncertain times ahead. By the end of 2018-19, the current economic expansion will have matched the longest in post-war history. This budget will grow the balance in the fund to $13.8 billion.
Counteracting the Effects of Poverty and Combatting Homelessness
The budget invests $5 billion to help address challenges with affordable housing and homelessness, including providing $500 million to assist local governments in their immediate efforts to help homeless Californians.
Strengthening Infrastructure
The budget delivers the first full year of funding under Senate Bill 1 – the state’s Road Repair and Accountability Act – with $4.6 billion in new transportation funding in 2018-19. The funding will repair neighborhood roads, state highways and bridges, fill potholes, ease congestion in busy trade and commute corridors and improve and modernize passenger rail and public transit.
Combating Climate Change
The budget includes a $1.4 billion Cap and Trade Expenditure Plan to invest in programs that further reduce carbon pollution and support climate resiliency efforts, including $210 million for forest improvement and fire prevention projects that protect the state’s forests from wildfires and $334.5 million for the California Energy Commission and the California Air Resources Board to begin the implementation of a multi-year initiative to accelerate sales of zero-emission vehicles through vehicle rebates and infrastructure investments.
How You Can Get Involved in Shaping APA California’s Legislative Positions
As bills are making their way through hearings and floor votes, APA California’s lobbying team lobbies legislators, staff and the Governor.  Part of that effort includes  sending letters to the authors and other members in support of or in opposition to their measures.  We encourage you to participate in APA California’s Legislative Review Team, whose members advise APA California on legislative positions, potential amendments and key planning policies. Information on the Review Team and sign up information are located on the APA California website legislation page. As always, we would also appreciate letters to legislators and the Governor from APA California members or their employers that are consistent with those positions. To review the letters, and for an alert on APA’s positions on all of the major planning-related bills, please go to the legislative tab on APA’s website at www.apacalifornia.com. All position letters will be posted on the APA California website “Legislation” page, which can be found here:  https://www.apacalifornia.org/legislation/legislative-review-teams/position-letters/. Position letters will continue to be posted here as they are written and updated – APA encourages you to use these as templates for your own jurisdiction/company letters. 
Hot Bills 
As noted above, the final policy committee deadline has passed (July 6). A number of bills continue to move that focus again on major changes to state laws impacting housing, including bills dealing with ADUs, Density Bonus law, RHNA allocations, fees and building permits.  As you’ll see below, APA California is now supporting twice as many housing bills than we are opposing.  We also continue to be actively engaged with legislators on those measures we oppose to address concerns and offer alternative amendments whenever possible to meet the authors’ goals while insuring the bill’s requirements are reasonable and feasible – and clear enough to be implemented. Through this process, APA California has been successful in amending a number of important bills.
Below is a list of some of the high priority bills APA California is currently lobbying. Position letters with more information on all of these bills are posted on the APA California website, as noted above.

AB 686 (Santiago)
Adds federal “affirmatively further fair housing” requirements to California law.
AB 1771 (Bloom)
Provides RHNA allocation reform.
AB 1804 (Berman)
Provides a CEQA infill exemption for counties.
AB 1905 (Grayson)
Prohibits staying or enjoining transportation projects under CEQA that are included in an SCS.
AB 2162 (Chiu)
Provides a “by right” process and expedited review for supportive housing.
AB 2263 (Friedman)
Limits parking requirements for historical reuse projects.
AB 2341 (Mathis) Eliminates consideration of aesthetic effects of projects in CEQA.
AB 2372 (Gloria)
Authorizes a floor area ratio bonus in lieu of a density bonus.
AB 2631 (Allen) Provides for a new “by right” process for housing separate from SB 35.
AB 2753 (Friedman) 
Requires new notification of density bonus status to applicant when application is deemed complete.
AB 2797 (Bloom) Requires density bonus, waivers and concessions to be permitted in a manner that is consistent with that law and the California Coastal Act.
AB 2856 (Melendez) 
Prohibits a court in a CEQA challenge related to housing project from staying the siting, construction or operation of the project.
AB 2890 (Ting)
One of three bills this year that make another round of major ADU changes. The bills have some similar and many conflicting provisions.
AB 2913 (Wood)
Extends the original life of a building permit from 6 months to one year for housing projects statewide.
AB 2923 (Chiu) 
Requires zoning around specified BART stations to be consistent with BART zoning plan, granting BART land use authority.
AB 3037 (Chiu)
Reinstates the redevelopment process for housing and infrastructure projects.
AB 3147 (Caballero) 
Freezes mitigation and other impact fees for 2 years for housing projects from date application is deemed “substantially complete”.
AB 3171 (Ting)
Provides funding for local homelessness programs.
AB 3194 (Daly) 
Provides that a proposed project is not inconsistent with applicable zoning standards and criteria, and shall not require a rezoning, if the proposed project is consistent with objective general plan standards and criteria but the local agency’s adopted zoning for the project site is inconsistent with the general plan.
SB 827 (Wiener) 
Overrides local zoning authority near transit.
SB 828 (Wiener)
Requires RHNA allocation reform and states intent that cities and counties should take reasonable actions to ensure that future housing production meet at a minimum their RHNA allocation.
SB 831 (Wieckowski) One of three bills this year that make another round of major ADU changes. The bills have some similar and many conflicting provisions.
SB 912 (Beall) 
Provides funding for homeless and affordable housing.
SB 1035 (Jackson) 
Clarifies the update requirements for flood, fire and climate adaptation assessments in the safety element. 
SB 1260 (Jackson) 
Provides for fire prevention and planning through prescribed burns.
SB 1469 (Skinner) 
One of three bills this year that make another round of major ADU changes. The bills have some similar and many conflicting provisions.
All Hot Bills
To view the full list of hot planning bills, copies of the measures, up-to-the minute status and APA California letters and positions, please continue to visit the legislative page on APA California’s website at www.apacalifornia.org.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact Lauren De Valencia y Sanchez at lauren@stefangeorge.com.

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