ORDINANCE NO. 459U ORDINANCE NO. 459U ORDINANCE NO. 459U

ORDINANCE NO. 459U

AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES REPEALING URGENCY ORDINANCE NO. 427U AND URGENCY ORDINANCE NO. 439U AND AMENDING SECTION 15.20.040 K AND SECTION 15.20.050 L OF THE RANCHO PALOS VERDES MUNICIPAL CODE AND DECLARING THE URGENCY THEREOF.

WHEREAS, in September 1978, the City Council adopted Urgency Ordinance No. 108U, which established the Landslide Moratorium Area in a portion of the City, as depicted on a map that is on file in the City’s Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement; and

WHEREAS, in February 1981, the City Council adopted Ordinance No. 139U, which added the area known as Klondike Canyon to the Landslide Moratorium Area, which is described as the area outlined in red on the map that is on file in the City’s Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement; and

WHEREAS, in September 1989, the City Council adopted Ordinance No. 247, which added a new provision to the Landslide Moratorium Ordinance that provided the possibility for more intense development than previously was permitted in the Klondike Canyon Area, as outlined in blue on the map that is on file in the City’s Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement (“Blue Area”); and

WHEREAS, in May 2005, following the unusual winter rains during the winter of 2004-2005, the first indications that the Blue Area may be experiencing landslide movement appeared; and

WHEREAS, in October 2005, the City received a report from the City Geologist, who was reviewing a proposed development in the Blue Area, that discussed the issue of landslide movement in the Blue Area; and

WHEREAS, based on the new evidence of landslide movement in the Blue Area, the City Council has asked the City Geologist to determine whether the more flexible development standards that had been allowed in the Blue Area since 1989 should be repealed so that the Blue Area will be subject to the same development criteria that are applicable to the other areas that are subject to the Landslide Moratorium Ordinance, as was the case from February 1981 through September 1989; and,

WHEREAS, on November 15, 2005, the City Council adopted Urgency Ordinance No. 427U, which established a 60-day moratorium on the processing and issuance of building, grading or other permits, and landslide moratorium exception permits and the processing or approval of Environmental Assessments, Environmental Impact Reports, Conditional Use Permits, height variation applications, tentative maps or parcel maps in the Blue Area and temporarily suspended Section 15.20.040 K of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code pending the completion of new geological data to determine whether construction in the Blue Area is safe in light of the newly observed instability or if the proposed development could adversely impact the stability of said Area; and,

WHEREAS, because the Global Positioning System (“GPS”) Data still was being collected, and the City Geologist still was in the process of completing the review of that data to assess the potential impacts of construction in the Blue Area upon the overall stability of said Area and upon the public health, safety and welfare and, accordingly, needed additional time to complete that review before determining if the moratorium imposed by Ordinance 427 U should be lifted, resulting in several extensions of the moratorium by the City Council; and

WHEREAS, because the City Geologist’s report was completed and was presented to the City Council, and the City Council elected to hold a study session on October 7, 2006, where additional questions were posed by the City Council; and

WHEREAS, following the study session, the City Geologist issued a report, which was subsequently reviewed by a three-member peer review panel, and because additional time was required for that process to occur, the City Council further extended the Moratorium that was established by Ordinance 427U, Ordinance No. 439U, so that the last extension will expire on June 22, 2007;

NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DOES ORDAIN AS FOLLOWS:

SECTION 1. The City Council of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes hereby repeals Urgency Ordinance No. 427U; Urgency Ordinance 432U; Urgency Ordinance 438U and Urgency Ordinance No. 439 U and all of the ordinances that extended any of those ordinances, including Ordinance No. 440U, 448U, 452U, and 457U.

SECTION 2. Paragraph H of Section 15.20.040 of Chapter 15.20 of Title 15 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code is hereby amended to read as follows:

“H. Minor projects on a lot that is in the ‘landslide moratorium area,’ as outlined in red on the landslide moratorium map on file in the director’s office, and currently is developed with a residential structure or other lawfully existing nonresidential structure and involves an addition to an existing structure, enclosed patio, conversion of an existing garage to habitable space or construction of a permanent attached or detached accessory structure and does not exceed a cumulative project(s) total of one thousand two hundred square feet per parcel; provided that a landslide moratorium exception permit is approved by the director and provided that the project complies with the criteria set forth in Section 15.20.050 and does not include any additional plumbing fixtures, unless the lot is served by a sanitary sewer system. The one thousand two hundred square foot limitation on cumulative projects that can be approved on a lot pursuant to this subsection includes the construction of a new garage, which can be approved pursuant to subsection L of this section. November 5, 2002, is the date that shall be used for determining the baseline square footage, based upon city and county building permit records, for purposes of calculating the square footage of any cumulative project(s) and of any additions that may be constructed pursuant to this subsection H. Minor projects involving the construction of an enclosed permanent detached accessory structure shall include a requirement that a use restriction covenant, in a form acceptable to the city, that prevents the enclosed permanent detached accessory structure from being used as a separate dwelling unit is recorded with the Los Angeles County register-recorder. Such covenant shall be submitted to the director prior to the issuance of a building permit. Prior the approval of a landslide moratorium exception permit for such minor projects, the applicant shall submit to the director any geological or geotechnical studies reasonably required by the city to demonstrate to the satisfaction of the city geotechnical staff that the proposed project will not aggravate the existing situation;”

SECTION 3. Paragraph K of Section 15.20.040 of Chapter 15.20 of Title 15 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code is hereby amended to read as follows:

“K. Minor projects on a lot that is in the ‘landslide moratorium area,’ as outlined in blue on the landslide moratorium map on file in the director’s office, and currently is developed with a residential structure or other lawfully existing nonresidential structure and involves an addition to an existing structure, enclosed patio, conversion of an existing garage to habitable space or construction of a permanent attached or detached accessory structure and does not exceed a cumulative project(s) total of one thousand two hundred square feet per parcel; provided that a landslide moratorium exception permit is approved by the director and provided that the project complies with the criteria set forth in Section 15.20.050 and does not include any additional plumbing fixtures, unless the lot is served by a sanitary sewer system. The one thousand two hundred square foot limitation on cumulative projects that can be approved on a lot pursuant to this subsection includes the construction of a new garage, which can be approved pursuant to subsection L of this section. November 5, 2002, is the date that shall be used for determining the baseline square footage, based upon city and county building permit records, for purposes of calculating the square footage of any cumulative project(s) and of any additions that may be constructed pursuant to this subsection K. Minor projects involving the construction of an enclosed permanent detached accessory structure shall include a requirement that a use restriction covenant, in a form acceptable to the city, that prevents the enclosed permanent detached accessory structure from being used as a separate dwelling unit is recorded with the Los Angeles County register-recorder. Such covenant shall be submitted to the director prior to the issuance of a building permit. Prior the approval of a landslide moratorium exception permit for such minor projects, the applicant shall submit to the director any geological or geotechnical studies reasonably required by the city to demonstrate to the satisfaction of the city geotechnical staff that the proposed project will not aggravate the existing situation;”

SECTION 4. Paragraph J of Section 15.20.050 of Chapter 15.20 of Title 15 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code is hereby amended to read as follows:

“J. If the lot or parcel is served by a sanitary sewer system, the sewer lateral that serves the applicant’s property shall be inspected to verify that there are no cracks, breaks or leaks and, if such deficiencies are present, the sewer lateral shall be repaired or reconstructed to eliminate them, prior to the issuance of a building permit for the project that is being approved pursuant to the issuance of the moratorium exception permit.”

SECTION 5. Other than the building permit and other permits that have been issued by the City to construct the home at 4369 Dauntless Drive, and any other home where above-ground construction work has been performed in substantial reliance on a building permit that has been issued by the City, and the planning approval and other permits that have been issued by the City for the construction of the house located at 4342 Admirable Drive, which shall not be affected by the provisions of this Ordinance, any building or grading permit, landslide moratorium exception permit, or other permit for new construction in the Landslide Moratorium Area, which has been previously granted by the City but which has not been acted upon in substantial reliance by the holder thereof, is suspended indefinitely. Construction in reliance on any such suspended permit shall be prohibited unless and until the City lifts the suspension.

SECTION 6. In October 2005, it came to the attention of the City Council that the land identified in the Blue Area, which was previously thought to be stable, in fact was experiencing current landslide movement. In order to protect the public health, safety and welfare, the City Geologist was to review recently collected GPS Data to determine the stability of the land in question and to determine whether development of new structures on undeveloped lots or parcels, substantial additions to existing homes, or the construction of certain accessory structures on properties in the Blue Area should be allowed. The City Council conducted a workshop on October 7, 2006. However, additional time was needed for additional studies to be completed to address the concerns that were expressed by the City Council regarding allowing additions to existing structures within the Landslide Moratorium Area and whether to treat all portions of the Moratorium Area similarly and to have the City Geologist’s report submitted for review by a peer review panel comprised of geologic experts who work within the City. Now that those studies have been completed, the City Council finds that the Moratorium on additions to existing homes that was imposed by Ordinance No. 427 U and 439U are no longer necessary. However, the City Council also finds that it is necessary to immediately amend Section 15.20.040 K to eliminate pools and spas from the structures that can be constructed in the Blue Area and to make the restrictions on development in that area similar to the development restrictions in the other portions of the Landslide Moratorium Area so that residents are not exposed to undue health hazards and safety risks that could pose a current and immediate threat to the public health, safety, or general welfare by frustrating the City’s ability to protect the public health, safety and welfare by minimizing the adverse effects of slope failure. This ordinance is therefore necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, safety and welfare and shall take effect immediately upon adoption as an urgency ordinance.

PASSED, APPROVED AND ADOPTED this 5th day of June 2007.

/s/ Thomas D. Long
Mayor
Attest:

/s/ Carla Morreale
City Clerk

STATE OF CALIFORNIA )
COUNTY OF LOS ANGELES )ss
CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES )

I, Carla Morreale, City Clerk of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, do hereby certify that the whole number of members of the City Council of said City is five; that the foregoing Ordinance No. 459U was duly and regularly adopted by the City Council of said City at a regular meeting thereof held on June 5, 2007, and that the same was passed and adopted by the following roll call vote:

AYES: Gardiner, Stern, Wolowicz, and Mayor Long
NOES: None
ABSENT: Clark
ABSTAIN: None

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City Clerk