If ever there were a year that would seem ripe for housing element reform, it's 2003.
Yet there is little discussion of comprehensive reform, nor even much active discussion on whether to move forward into the next cycle of RHNAs and housing element updates in 2005.
Since 1996, California voters have approved $11.1 billion worth of resource bonds. However, tracking how that money has been spent, how the remainder is proposed to be allocated — and even determining how much money is available — have proven tricky.
A takings lawsuit by Lake Tahoe area property owners against the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA) has been tossed out by the Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals because the court had already ruled on the matter.
Placer County did not violate state law by including two projects in one environmental impact report, the Third District Court of Appeal has ruled. The county did not abuse it discretion by covering a 31-lot subdivision and a large church — which started out as two parts of the same project — in one EIR, the court held.
Although Sacramento is short of money these days, the state capital does not lack for policy initiatives that directly or indirectly affect land use.
In fact, veteran lobbyists say they can remember few years when legislators introduced so many policy bills.
The State Department of Water Resources has settled a lawsuit filed by the Planning and Conservation League over the 1995 "Monterey Agreement," which, among other things, spelled out how State Water Project (SWP) water would be allocated during droughts. The settlement calls for the agency to more fully disclose its ability to deliver water.
Tejon Ranch owns what might be the largest contiguous stretch of land controlled by one property owner in California. Since the mid 19th century, the Tejon Ranch property, located along present-day Interstate 5 in Los Angeles and Kern Counties, has served primarily for cattle grazing and sport hunting. But Tejon Ranch Company, a publicly traded corporation, is now pursuing major development projects on opposite ends of the ranch.