A group of about 2,000 California Realtors descended on the state capital in Sacramento this week to meet with legislators and promote the agenda of the state association of Realtors. The California Association of Realtors sponsored eight bills this year and six in 2003. Protecting private property rights and increasing the supply of homes in the state are at the top of the legislative agenda.

Among the association-sponsored bills introduced this year:

  • Assembly Bill 578 would affirm the ability of county recorders to receive real estate transactional documents electronically. Orange County has implemented a pilot project for this system.

  • AB 920 would change the Natural Hazard Disclosure Report form to require a supplying consultant to sign his or her own work product, rather than the seller or agent.

  • AB 2175, co-sponsored by the Apartment Association of Greater Los Angeles, creates standards for condominium conversions and permits an owner to convert to condos if at least 50 percent of the tenants agree to buy their units. Those tenants who do not choose to buy remain protected under rent-control laws.

  • AB 2718 is intended to alert homeowners within common-interest developments about possible assessment increases and revise the requirements of homeowner associations to notify their members about their reserve funds intended to cover future repairs or replacements of “major components.”

  • AB 2348 would allow any city or county to reduce its share of the regional low-income and moderate-income housing needs by 15 percent for each income group if the city or county could demonstrate that more housing was being built in its community than in surrounding cities and counties and if it had made substantial progress meeting the housing needs of its residents.

  • AB 2702 is intended to facilitate the development of second units on a property by “preventing arbitrary restrictions that are meant to make it exceedingly difficult to put such units on a property” and would allow property owners “the ability to build units that are sufficient in size for their needs and aesthetically pleasing–without encroaching on the privacy of other property owners.

  • Senate Bill 1818 would reduce the amount of low-income housing units that developers must build in order to receive a density bonus. The bill would reduce this percentage of low-income units required to receive this incentive from 20 percent to 10 percent, and developers can only use this law to benefit condominium buyers.

The California Association of Realtors, with headquarters in Los Angeles, has about 135,000 members, which represents about 13 percent of the nation’s Realtors.

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Send tips or a Letter to the Editor to glenn@inman.com or call (510) 658-9252, ext. 137.

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