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Legislative Updates

Crunch Time

March 2, 2021

Four days left, and so much still to do.


Three significant planning issue bills are up for hearing today, on the final day of committee hearings.  Each one of these has some significant changes proposed as well.  They are:


SB164 – Housing Affordability Amendments – 2nd Substitute – this bill has not yet been adopted, but likely will be in committee at 8:00 this morning.  Here’s the comparison with the current version of the bill.  A lot of changes between these two, including the elimination of a lot of the inclusionary zoning language, elimination of the Housing Affordability Pilot Grants, and in its place providing for “predevelopment grants.”  Also the language on accounting for building and development fees that was included in this and a couple of other bills, has been stricken.  Lots to look at here.


HB98 – Local Government Building Regulation Amendments is scheduled for senate committee hearing at 2:00 this afternoon.  There may be some changes to this bill coming, nothing posted yet, but despite the League’s stance on this bill it still faces significant doubt if not opposition among many local government officials.  So much so that League President Mayor Caldwell (Ogden) made a plea in the League’s LPC meeting yesterday to stand behind the League’s position of neutrality on the bill because of the hard-fought negotiations that have taken place over the past several weeks and the need to show credibility in the negotiation process, otherwise legislators will lose trust in the League’s ability to speak for its members.  A good point, though when stories like this come out it makes it difficult for local officials!


HB82 – Single-Family Housing Modifications 5th Substitute is out but not adopted, will likely be considered and possibly adopted in committee this afternoon at 2:20.  Here’s the comparison with the current bill version.  Most of the changes have to do with documenting that a home has an accessory unit by recording a notice, prohibitions on short-term rental of ADUs, and setting up a notice of violation and an appeals process specific to ADUs.


HB409 – Municipal and County Land Use and Development Revisions was substituted and passed out favorably by committee yesterday, and is now on the House floor awaiting a vote.  The changes in the substitute are mostly related to the process of making changes to property or lot line changes between properties, but (warning! Editorial comment!) wow the mind-numbing complexity this kind of language adds to LUDMA, cheeze!  Good luck navigating your way through LUDMA nowadays!


No movement on any of the billboard bills – yet! (cue the music from the movie Jaws).


There has been action on a number of other bills we are watching, but they are all relatively minor, and we’ll summarize these in an end-of-session roundup.



Wilf Sommerkorn

Co-Chair, APA Utah Legislative Committee

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