Newsom signed a new law to sell excess land in Orange County
California Governor Gavin Newsom recently signed into law the Surplus Land Sales Act. This document is aimed at preventing the illegal sale of surplus land by Orange County cities. The measure applies only to this county and will remain in effect until 2030.
Bill was introduced by Senator Tom Umberg. It restricts the sale of land in Orange County if it violates affordable housing requirements. The law was originally intended to apply statewide. However, active local government intervention reduced it to one county.
The main thrust of the surplus land sale law is to suspend land transactions if cities receive notices of violations. Before selling surplus land, cities will be required to correct any violations cited in notices from the California Department of Housing and Community Development.
The law also established that priority for sale must be given to affordable housing projects. Developers of such housing will be given the right of priority negotiation for the purchase of land. The Department of Housing Construction was given the right to require re-tendering of land plots.
According to Senator Umberg the Surplus Land Sales Act is really important. He said Orange County residents deserve transparency in the use of taxes. The announcement came amid controversy surrounding the sale of Angel Stadium in Anaheim, which officials believe is also covered by the law.
The City of Anaheim, after receiving a notice of violation in 2021, initially challenged it. Subsequently, however, it agreed to spend $96 million to create affordable housing. City officials reiterated their willingness to comply with the surplus land sale law and other state laws.
Additionally, the new law requires local agencies to hold public hearings on notices of violation received. This will provide more openness and discussion of issues related to land sales.
These public hearings will not only ensure transparency in the process, but also give residents the opportunity to express their opinions and ask questions. This approach provides citizens with more information about how and why their tax money is being used in these transactions.
In closing, this law not only promotes the creation of affordable housing, but also emphasizes the role of the public and transparency in government. It provides opportunities for residents to become more involved in the processes that directly affect their lives and well-being. The Surplus Land Sales Act represents important progress in improving living conditions in Orange County.