Agriculture and Natural Resources
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Department of Water Resources Flood Management Legislative Proposals
Last week, the Department of Water Resources (DWR) released a summary of their flood management legislative proposal. The actual bill language has yet to be shared with stakeholders. A few components are currently addressed in AB 156 (Laird) and SB 17 (Florez).
According to the summary, the land use components of the proposal would:
· Require all cities and counties to amend the safety element of their general plans beginning in 2010 according to specific requirements for lands at high risk of flooding.
· Require school districts to comply with general plan floodplain policies.
· Require general plans to limit new development in flood hazard zones without adequate protection.
· Require cities and counties within the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valley to develop a strategy to provide 200-year flood protection by 2022 for existing development in deep floodplains protected by project levees.
· Require charter cities’ zoning decisions to be consistent with the general plan’s floodplain provisions.
· Amend the development agreement statute to limit its use to vest development rights on potentially flood-prone lands after January 1, 2008.
· Prohibit cities and counties in the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valley, after January 1, 2010, from approving residential subdivisions in deep floodplains within any levee flood protection zone unless the subdivision is located in an existing developed area; or the city or county has affirmed that there is a reasonable plan to achieve 200-year protection by 2022; or the residential units are constructed 1 foot above the base flood elevation associated with a 200-year flood.
· Limits the use of vesting tentative subdivision maps after January 1, 2008.
DWR’s legislative proposals also address cost sharing formulas, flood risk notification (AB 156 (Laird)), liability (notes support for AB 70 (Jones), and flood insurance. CSAC will continue to include details regarding DWR’s proposal as they become available.
AB 5 (Wolk) – Request For Comment
AB 5, by Assembly Member Lois Wolk, was amended on June 6. This measure would apply only to the Sacramento-San Joaquin Valley. It would continue to require the Department of Water Resources to prepare a Central Valley Flood Protection Plan. The June 6 amendment would “require” local agencies to comply with the flood protection standards set forth in the Central Valley Flood Protection Plan or adopt a local plan of flood protection. It would continue to give priority for state bond funds to local agencies that have adopted local flood protection plans. AB 5 is currently pending on the Assembly Floor.
AB 70 (Jones) – Oppose
AB 70, by Assembly Member Dave Jones, moved off the Assembly Floor on June 6. The June 4 amendments would provide that a city or county may be subject to liability for property damage caused by a flood if a court finds the city or county’s actions increased the state’s exposure to liability by unreasonably approving new development in a previously undeveloped areaprotected by a state flood control project. These amendments resulted in the California Building Industry Association removing its opposition. CSAC, the Regional Council of Rural Counties, and the League of California Cities remain opposed to AB 70.
AB 162 (Wolk) – Support
AB 162, by Assembly Member Lois Wolk, moved off the Assembly Floor on June 13. This bill would require cities and counties to address in a more comprehensive manner flood management in their general plans. The components of AB 162 are consistent with CSAC’s Flood Protection Principles and Policy Guidelines that direct CSAC to support the strengthening of flood protection policies in state general plan law.