2013 Legislative Activity Overview

2013 Legislative Overview

ECHO watches a wide variety of bills every legislative session. While some bills affect common interest developments (CIDs) explicitly, many bills have an “accidental” impact on our industry. We look for both kinds, and try to reduce the negative statutory burden on California CIDs. We also work to ensure that the legislation that becomes law - good or bad - is clear and enforceable.

2013 Overview

2013 was a relatively light year for CID legislation. While a number of concerning bills did come before the Legislature, most stalled early in the legislative process. Bills affecting smoking, electronic voting, and mandatory submetering were under consideration, but did not make it to the Governor. A few of the bills on our watch list have become two-year bills, meaning we will likely see them again in 2014. Below is a brief account of each bill on our watch list, and its final disposition for 2013.

Enacted Bills

The following bills were signed by the Governor and will become law on January 1st, 2014.

SB 298 - Contracts with Private Parking Enforcement

This region-specific bill authorizes the Orange County Board of Supervisors to contract for supplemental law enforcement services for homeowners’ associations to enforce Vehicle Code on the association’s owned and maintained roads. While this bill does not directly impact associations in other regions, it may lay the groundwork for future legislation. Position: Watch

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SB 510 - Resident Surveys in Mobilehome Conversions

This bill provides that a local agency is required to consider the results of a survey in making its decision to approve or reject a map related to the conversion of a rental mobilehome park to resident ownership. Position: Watch

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SB 745 - New Davis-Stirling Clean-Up

This annual housing omnibus bill contains non-controversial provisions that clean up mistakes within the new Davis-Stirling Act, effective in January 2014. Position: Watch

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SB 752 - Davis-Stirling for Commercial CIDs

This bill establishes a new body of law, separate from the Davis-Stirling Act, that governs exclusively commercial and industrial CIDs. Mixed commercial and residential associations are not affected. Position: Watch

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Two-Year Bills

The following bills were not signed into law in 2013. However, they passed out of their house of origin and did not fail during the legislative process. They will return in 2014, the second year of the 2013-2014 legislative session.

AB 968 - Elections in Small Associations

This bill seeks to carve out specific exemptions for small associations from existing law governing CID elections. In certain cases, the bill would allow small CIDs to forego the mailing of ballots, and permit both nominations and voting at the election meeting. The size of a “small” association changed several times, and currently stands at 15 units. Although the bill moved through the Legislature with bipartisan support, concerns from the Senate Housing and Transportation committee pushed the bill into a two-year process. ECHO is working with the author to refine the bill and address some lingering concerns. Position: Support

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AB 1360 - Electronic Voting in CIDs

This bill authorizes an association to conduct elections or other membership balloting by electronic voting. It also requires an association to provide each member with an opportunity to indicate that he or she will be voting electronically and to provide a member who did not indicate so with a paper ballot. ECHO is seeking additional clarification, including a definition of an “electronic balloting service provider.” Position: Support if Amended

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SB 391 - Document Recording Fees

In order to fund affordable housing, this bill would impose a fee for all documents that must be recorded in California, including governing documents. This bill poses several concerns for associations. While it is dead for 2013, it may return in another form next year.

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Unapproved Bills

The following bills did not pass out of their house of origin, and stalled during the legislative process. These bills have "failed," but could reappear in another form or with a new bill number in 2014.

AB 126 - Address Lists in Time-Shares

This bill requires a time-share association to maintain a complete list of the names and postal addresses of all owners of time-share interests in the time-share plan and to update the list at least every 12 months. The bill did not meet legislative deadlines and is dead for this year.

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AB 746 - Smoking Ban in Multi-Family Dwellings

This bill proposed to ban smoking in all multi-family dwellings in California. The sweeping nature of the legislation stirred up a predictable backlash, and the bill did not make it out of the Assembly Housing and Community Development committee. However, reconsideration was granted, and the bill may return in a new form next year.

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AB 1205 - Mobilehome Residency Law Mediation Act

This bill would create a mediation program for alleged violations of the Mobilehome Residency Law, and would impose financial assessments to maintain the program. ECHO sought an amendment that would exempt mobilehome parks that are governed by the Davis-Stirling Act. Position: Oppose Unless Amended

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SB 125 - Fire Prevention Fees

This bill exempts a property owner of a structure that is both within a state responsibility area and within the boundaries of a local fire district that provides fire protection services in the district from the payment of the fire prevention fee.

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SB 750 - Mandatory Submetering

This bill deals with water sub-meters and meters. While the bill intended to address landlords and tenants, the language did not exempt common interest developments. Position: Oppose Unless Amended

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