September 20, 2013
Holden says bill is “critical first-step to restoring peace and security to neighborhoods”
The state Senate approved a bill expediting the sale of state-owned
houses no longer needed for a proposed State Highway Route 710 extension
in Los Angeles, Alhambra, South Pasadena, and Pasadena, Sen. Carol Liu
announced Tuesday (September 10, 2013).
Liu authored SB 416, which streamlines the California Department of
Transportation process for selling as surplus property houses that were
purchased more than 50 years ago for the extension route. The Senate
passed the bill on a 38-0 vote and sent it to Governor Jerry Brown, who
has 30 days to sign or veto the legislation.
“This bill gets Caltrans out of the real estate management business,
generate revenues for local transportation projects, and returns these
properties to our local tax rolls,” said Liu, D-La Canada Flintridge.
Assemblymembers Mike Gatto, D-Burbank and Chris Holden, D-Pasadena,
co-authored the legislation. “I want to thank Mr. Gatto and Mr. Holden
for their support of this important measure,” Liu said. SB 416 passed
the Assembly 77-0 last week.
The 4.5-mile, uncompleted portion of Route 710 transects neighborhoods
and communities. Caltrans owns over 500 properties within the originally
proposed surface route corridor. About 400 homes are occupied by
tenants for whom Caltrans serves as landlord, but many houses remain
vacant and in disrepair.
The originally proposed North 710 surface route segment has been
eliminated from further consideration by the Los Angeles County
Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which is preparing the
Environmental Impact Report and Statement on Caltrans’ behalf. SB 416
will codify this determination, clearing the way for properties to be
declared excess and sold.
Current law, known as the Roberti Bill, establishes terms and
conditions for the sale of properties to current tenants and affordable
housing entities before offering them for sale at fair market value to
the public. Single-family residences must first be offered at an
affordable price to present occupants who qualify as low income. SB 416
enables those properties to be sold “as is” upon agreement with the
buyer thus, relieving Caltrans of the need to make costly repairs prior
to a sale. The bill further revises the definition of “fair market
value” to reflect the “as is” condition of the property, taking into
account any needed repairs, and gives current tenants priority to
purchase residential and non-residential properties at fair market
Assemblymember Chris Holden (D-Pasadena) issued the following
statement after SB 416 – authored by Senator Carol Liu and co-authored
by Assemblymember Holden cleared the Assembly on Friday.
“This bill will ensure the timely sales of the ‘surplus homes’
currently owned by Caltrans. Thanks to Sen. Liu’s SB 416, Caltrans’
decades- long mismanagement of the ‘surplus homes’ will finally come to
an end. This bill is a critical first-step to restoring peace and
security to neighborhoods long threatened by Caltrans’ poor property
management and an ill-advised surface extension of the 710.”