[Save Sacramento Neighborhoods] Take action on Sacramento & CA proposed densification laws - update from 4/20 alert

no2rezone at list.omsoft.com no2rezone at list.omsoft.com
Wed Apr 21 15:02:09 PDT 2021

Additions to yesterday’s (4/20) message:

   Although Planning Commissioners are appointed by District, the districts are not listed on the  <https://www.cityofsacramento.org/Community-Development/Meetings/Planning-and-Design> City’s website. The alert below has been modified to include emailing to all the  <https://www.cityofsacramento.org/Community-Development/Meetings/Planning-and-Design> Planning Commissioners: 

 <mailto:pdc.tyrone.buckley at gmail.com,%20 > pdc.tyrone.buckley at gmail.com,     <mailto:rkutect at gmail.com> rkutect at gmail.com,  <mailto:wangconnellypdc at gmail.com> wangconnellypdc at gmail.com,  <mailto:dcovill at cbnorcal.com> dcovill at cbnorcal.com,  <mailto:PDC.Nicolina at gmail.com> PDC.Nicolina at gmail.com,   <mailto:lynnlenzi2 at gmail.com> lynnlenzi2 at gmail.com,  <mailto:> aogilvie.sacpdc at gmail.com,  <mailto:> phil.pluckebaum at gmail.com,   <mailto:kreed.pdc at gmail.com> kreed.pdc at gmail.com,  <mailto:mwallacepdc at gmail.com> mwallacepdc at gmail.com,   <mailto:jyeepdc at gmail.com> jyeepdc at gmail.com


From: Save Sacramento Neighborhoods ListServe
Sent: April 20, 2021
Subject: Take action re this Thursday April 22 hearings on making Sacramento & CA more dense

For any questions or comments, please email Save Sacramento Neighborhoods at  <mailto:No2Rezone at gmail.com> No2Rezone at gmail.com. Thank you.

In this message from Save Sacramento Neighborhoods:

1. Sacramento is proposing more densification of existing neighborhoods with its draft Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) ordinance to be heard by the city  <http://sacramento.granicus.com/ViewPublisher.php?view_id=21> Planning & Design Commission this Thursday at 5:30pm. (See below.)

2. Two State bills, SB 9 and SB 10, that adversely affect existing neighborhoods will be heard by the  <https://sgf.senate.ca.gov/> CA Senate Governance and Finance Committee this Thursday, April 22 at 10:30am. Attend the hearing if you can and tell Senator Pan (or  <http://findyourrep.legislature.ca.gov/> your state senator) to oppose both bills. SB 9 will eliminate single family zoning and increase densities in existing neighborhoods statewide. This would override any local government zoning. (See below.)

3. The April 15  <https://youtu.be/ueeaLMe7fEY> Webinar on the Future of Sacramento Neighborhoods can now be viewed on YouTube.

1. Sacramento Proposes More Densification with new ADU ordinance

●Tell your  <https://www.cityofsacramento.org/Mayor-Council/Find-Your-District> City Council person and the  <https://www.cityofsacramento.org/Community-Development/Meetings/Planning-and-Design> Sacramento Planning and Design Commission that you oppose the proposed increase in Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) square footage and reduced setbacks being proposed by City planners. Tell them that any deviations from the zoning requirements must be heard by the Planning Commission and City Council, not just decided administratively.

Tell them you want the city’s ordinance to have the same requirements as the  <https://www.hcd.ca.gov/policy-research/accessorydwellingunits.shtml> State law governing ADUs. This means that: 

- For detached ADUs, no more than 800 square feet can be exempted from lot coverage requirements. 

- For attached ADUs, the maximum floor area is the great of 50% of the primary unit or 800 sq feet (1 or less bedrooms) or 1000 (2 or more bedrooms). 

- The minimum side and rear yard setbacks must be 4 feet.

- One parking space per ADU. 

Note that State law already exempts all ADUs from parking requirements, so no additional onsite parking is required for any ADU, regardless of the number of bedrooms.

● If you can, attend the hearing this Thursday, April 22, 2021, 5:30pm. Once the meeting starts, you can  <http://sacramento.granicus.com/ViewPublisher.php?view_id=21> click here to watch it. To give a verbal comment during the meeting, Call (916) 808-7213 and Dial 5 to Make a Comment on Item 5, which is: Ordinance Amending Various Sections of the Sacramento City Code Related to Accessory Dwelling Units (M21-001) (Noticed 04/09/21)  File ID: 2021-00387.

● Please email your City Council member and the Planning Commissioners even if it is after the April 22 hearing. The draft ordinance will still go to the City Council.

Contact info:

Email your  <https://www.cityofsacramento.org/Mayor-Council/Find-Your-District> City Council member and the  <https://www.cityofsacramento.org/Community-Development/Meetings/Planning-and-Design> Planning and Design Commissioners, here are their emails:

 <mailto:pdc.tyrone.buckley at gmail.com,%20 > pdc.tyrone.buckley at gmail.com,     <mailto:rkutect at gmail.com> rkutect at gmail.com,  <mailto:wangconnellypdc at gmail.com> wangconnellypdc at gmail.com,  <mailto:dcovill at cbnorcal.com> dcovill at cbnorcal.com,  <mailto:PDC.Nicolina at gmail.com> PDC.Nicolina at gmail.com,   <mailto:lynnlenzi2 at gmail.com> lynnlenzi2 at gmail.com,  <mailto:> aogilvie.sacpdc at gmail.com,  <mailto:> phil.pluckebaum at gmail.com,   <mailto:kreed.pdc at gmail.com> kreed.pdc at gmail.com,  <mailto:mwallacepdc at gmail.com> mwallacepdc at gmail.com,   <mailto:jyeepdc at gmail.com> jyeepdc at gmail.com

Please cc  <mailto:gnorman at cityofsacramento.org> gnorman at cityofsacramento.org,  <mailto:ecompton at cityofsacramento.org> ecompton at cityofsacramento.org, and  <mailto:PublicComment at cityofSacramento.org> PublicComment at cityofSacramento.org

Please bcc  <mailto:no2rezone at gmail.com> no2rezone at gmail.com


Sacramento City Planners are proposing to:

- Increase the exemption from lot coverage requirements from 800 square feet to 1200 square feet. (So more of the lot could be covered with a bigger ADU.) 

- Increase the maximum floor area for an attached ADU from the greater of 50% of the primary unit or 800/1000 sq ft to the greater of 50% or 1200 square feet. (So attached ADUs could be bigger.)

- Reduce the side yard setback from 4 feet to 0-3 feet. (So ADUs could potentially be built on the rear or side property line if they are 60 feet from the front property line.)

 <https://sacramento.granicus.com/MetaViewer.php?view_id=21&event_id=3981&meta_id=624298> Click to read the staff report.

Currently R-1 single family zoning has a maximum lot coverage of 40% or 2500 square feet, whichever is greater and minimum side yards of 5 feet. 

The city staff reports states that this new ADU ordinance “cements the current ordinance’s provisions for processing ADUs and confirms these applications are subject to ministerial review without discretionary review if the ADU meeting all objective requirements.” This means that city employees review and approve ADUs without public input. If deviations are required, these should be resolved by a public body, not just city employees.


While State law has mandated that every residential parcel can have at least two ADUs, these were intended to be small units. Increasing the footprint of an ADU from 800 to 1200 sq feet is making these into 150% larger units. Many houses in Sacramento’s existing neighborhoods are less than 1200 sq. feet, so this proposal basically allows a detached second full unit, which could be a 3-bedroom house with no parking (because the city’s current ordinance exempts ADUs from parking requirements). 

This proposal will reduce open space between existing houses and increase density in existing neighborhoods. Reducing setbacks to 0 because the unit is at the back of a lot ignores the impact that will have on adjacent lots including reducing privacy and blocking light. 

The city staff report clearly states one of the goals to “promote[s] residential infill in the City’s existing neighborhoods”. Typically infill is considered building on vacant lots but now the city is looking at all single family lots as “underutilized” unless they have additional units. This goal is really an attack on single family neighborhoods, delegitimizing the choice and eventually removing the ability of living in a single family detached house that has some yard space. 

This proposed ADU ordinance would significantly densify all existing single family neighborhoods, particularly those with smaller lots.


The City is using the same justification for increasing the size of ADUs exempt from lot coverage as it is using to promote upzoning of single family neighborhoods to allow for up to six units.

>From the staff report:

■ “Allowing two ADUs per parcel .. promotes residential infill in the City’s existing neighborhoods. Most of the infill development occurs in the older neighborhoods with larger parcels, helping to increase overall density levels throughout the city.” 
(Note that “larger” is not defined and many older neighborhoods have small lots.)

■“The City shall promote compact development patterns, mixed use, and higher-development intensities that use land efficiently, reduce pollution and automobile dependency and the expenditure of energy and other resources and facilitate walking, bicycling, and transit use.”
(This move to make Sacramento a dense urban city is a radical departure from why many people moved here and is not necessarily what people want. 
Nor does packing people in guarantee that there will be less pollution, less automobile use, or less use of energy or other resources. Pollution and energy use might actually be increased by density particularly in Sacramento were trees and vegetation are key in both reducing heat and air pollution.
And having moderate density neighborhoods clearly promotes walking and biking as it is safer on less crowded streets. Public transit would likely be used more if it were an efficient way to get around.)

■ “The City shall support an overall increase in average residential densities thorough the city.”
(Again are Sacramentans really aware and supportive of this proposed densification affecting existing neighborhoods?)

2. SB 9 and SB 10 

Both bills were discussed at the  <https://youtu.be/ueeaLMe7fEY> April 15, webinar Emily Gabel-Luddy and Isaiah Madison from Livable California. 

Attend the  <https://sgf.senate.ca.gov/> CA Senate Governance and Finance Committee hearing this Thursday, April 22 at 10:30am if you can.

Tell Senator Pan <https://sd06.senate.ca.gov/contact/email>  to oppose both bills.   <mailto:senator.pan at senate.ca.gov> senator.pan at senate.ca.gov (916) 651-4006. (Please email Senator Pan even if after the April 22 hearing as these bills still have to go to the Senate floor.)

 <https://www.livablecalifornia.org/portfolio-items/2021-bills-lc-tracked/> Excerpt from Livable California website

• SB 9 (Atkins) Revives SB 1120. Ends single-family zoning to allow 6 units where 1 home is now. SB 9 is not a “duplex” bill. State law allows two units already (AB 68), letting homeowners add a house in their yards, or turn their homes into duplexes. SB 9 encourages investors to bid against families, such as the  <https://www.wsj.com/articles/if-you-sell-a-house-these-days-the-buyer-might-be-a-pension-fund-11617544801> pension funds now gobbling up homes. Facing withering criticism, SB 9’s author Toni Atkins, in a Sacramento Bee op-ed, said her bill gives “homeowners the opportunity to reimagine their property.” Imagine, perhaps. But few families can finance full-sized homes in their yard. SB 9 is  <https://www.livablecalifornia.org/sb-1120-sold-as-a-duplex-bill-would-have-disrupted-home-ownership-among-21m-californians/> a copycat of SB 1120, the false “duplex” bill misreported by journalists in 2020. It is a  <https://www.livablecalifornia.org/sb-9-sb-10-a-misguided-attack-on-socals-black-and-latino-homeowners/> senseless gamble against 21M people living in homes they own. Strongly Oppose.  <https://www.livablecalifornia.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/LC-Oppose-SB-9-as-Amended-4_5_21-Final-4_9_21.pdf> Link to LC Position Letter

• SB 10 (Wiener) Copycat of the defeated SB 902 in 2020, SB 10 lets a simple majority on a city council to override CEQA to allow 10-unit pricey market-rate apartments almost anywhere — state Sen. Scott Wiener’s obsession for the past three years. Perhaps even more outrageous, this strongly anti-environment bill  <https://www.livablecalifornia.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/LC-Oppose-SB-9-as-Amended-4_5_21-Final-4_9_21.pdf> allows a City Council to override voter-approved land-protection initiatives including urban boundaries and open space, an attack on our 108-year-old right to initiative.  Strongly Oppose.  <https://www.livablecalifornia.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/Livable-California-Oppose-SB-10-final-3_11_21.pdf> Link to LC Position Letter

3.  <https://youtu.be/ueeaLMe7fEY> Click to view the April 15 webinar on the Future of Sacramento Neighborhoods.




-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://list.omsoft.com/pipermail/no2rezone/attachments/20210421/38768185/attachment-0001.html>

More information about the No2rezone mailing list