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Legislative Updates

The Last Day

March 5, 2021

We are down to the final day of the 2021 General Session of the Utah Legislature.  And for planning issue related bills, it’s all pretty much over (unless there’s a zombie apocalypse and the billboard bills come back – don’t laugh, I’ve seen it happen!)


The last three big bills still hanging fire we were watching all passed yesterday, except for a couple of minor procedural steps.  To remind, these were HB82 – Single-Family Housing Modifications, HB98 – Local Government Building Regulation Amendments, and HB409 – Municipal and County Land Use and Development Modifications.  As noted earlier, these (and a few other bills) usher in some significant changes to LUDMA and the way local land use regulation proceeds in future.  Be sure to get in on some post-session recap discussions in the coming weeks.  We’ll let you know details of those we hear about.


So, to a quick summary of what happened to the bills we were watching, by topic.


Housing Affordability

Bills that passed:

  • HB82 – Single-Family Housing Modifications – the 5th substitute version of the ADU bill, has lots of caveats
  • HB98 – Local Government Building Regulation Amendments – the 4th substitute version of this bill, much changed from the original with lots of caveats.  I debated whether to include this one in the section for housing affordability, proponents say it will help with affordability, many local officials say that’s doubtful (me included).
  • SB164 – Utah Housing Affordability Amendments – the 4th substitute version, took out the provisions on inclusionary zoning with promise to discuss during the interim, and did not change the number of moderate income housing policy options required

Bills that likely will pass today:

  • SB65 – Community Reinvestment Agency Amendments – among many other things, this bill would require CRAs to allocate a certain amount of property tax revenue for affordable housing
  • SB217 – Housing and Transit Reinvestment Zone Act – incentivizes more housing around transit stations

Bills that are dead:

  • HB273 – Single-Family Housing Amendments – this was a stand-by bill filed early in the session at the behest of House leadership in case the main ADU bill HB82 failed.  House leadership at one point said this issue was their number one priority.


And here’s a story about the main housing bills from Tony Semerad at the Trib (Tony’s a good egg, really researches issues well):



LUDMA Changes

Bills that passed:

  • HB82 – Single-Family Housing Modifications – I know, this bill is already listed in the Housing Affordability category, but it makes a lot of changes to LUDMA with some pretty detailed rules about ADUs.  Big addition to LUDMA
  • HB98 – Local Government Building Regulation Amendments – while much of this bill deals with building plan checks and inspections, it also has some significant limitations on design standards for one- and two-family dwellings, with lots of exceptions.
  • HB107 – Subdivision Plat Amendments
  • HB171 – Agricultural Land Use Regulation
  • HB409 – Municipal and County Land Use and Development Revisions – as noted earlier, lots of changes in here, especially to the provisions for lot line adjustments
  • SB130 – Regulation of Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations

Bills that will likely pass today:

  • HB256 – County Land Use and Development Amendments
  • SB201 – Public Notice Amendments
  • SB40 – County Recreational Area Amendments – terrible title for this bill, has to do with Mountainous Planning Districts

Bills that are dead:

  • HB273 – Single-Family Housing Amendments
  • HB281 – County Development Activities
  • HB401 – Fee Amendments
  • SB61 – Outdoor Advertising Amendments
  • SB120 – Outdoor Advertising Revisions
  • SB144 – Billboard Restrictions Amendments
  • SB221 – Short-Term Rental Amendments



Bills that passed:

  • HB115 – Municipal Boundary Modifications

Bills that are dead:

  • HB235 – Annexation Amendments
  • SB213 – Municipal Annexation Amendments




Bills that passed:

  • HB23 – Voter Referendum Amendments – among other things, this bill makes clear that the old language in state code is gone and that rezoning of individual properties is a legislative action and thus subject to referendum.
  • HB211 – Initiatives and Referenda Amendments


Other Bills of Interest to Planners

Bills that passed:

  • HB28 – Land Use and Eminent Domain Advisory Board Members
  • HB52 – Point of the Mountain Development Commission Act Modifications
  • HB63 – Impact Fee Amendments
  • HB297 – Colorado River Amendments
  • HB433 – Amendments Related to Infrastructure Spending
  • SB65 – Community Reinvestment Agency Amendments
  • SB113 – Transportation Amendments
  • SB131 – Public Education Buildings Standards and Process
  • SB194 – Utah Main Street Program

Bills that are likely to pass:

  • HB151 – State Infrastructure Bank Amendments

Bills that are dead:

  • HB364 – Utah Lake Authority
  • SB71 – Property Acquisition Amendments
  • SB111 – Records of Residential Property Owner Zoning Violations


Okay, that’s what I have.  If you are following anything I haven’t included that you think we should all know about, please send me a note!


And again, watch for the after-session wrap-ups from APA, the League and others that will be important to get you the details of what you need to do following this most intense and odd session.


Wilf Sommerkorn

Co-Chair, APA Utah Legislative Committee

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