The Big Issues
- SB 268 allows one county commissioner to object to any annexation that is for more than 5% of the municipality’s AV. This is the case regardless of whether the annexation is voluntary or super voluntary. If one commissioner objects to the annexation, then the county commissioners must conduct a public hearing and take a vote on whether to allow the annexation to proceed. This public hearing would be after the municipality has gone through all the steps to adopt their ordinance. This bill cleared the Senate Local Government Committee this week.
- SB 171 limits a municipality to one annexation ordinance per year and voids an annexation ordinance if the total gross assessed value of property in the annexation territory is more than 15% of the total gross assessed value of the annexing municipality. This bill also cleared the Senate Local Government Committee this week.
- An amendment to HB 1104 during the House Ways and Means Committee, retroactively voids all annexation waivers if they were not recorded within 90 days of execution. Further, all annexation waivers, regardless of what year they were executed, expire after 15 years. The language in this bill is similar to that of SB 261, which is sitting on the Senate’s second reading calendar as we try to work out adequate language with that bill’s author.
SMALL CELL FACILITY PERMITTING
- In reaction to the small cell structures legislation that passed in 2017, multiple bills (SB 258 and HB 1050) have been filed this session to further restrict local ordinances and give some recourse for impacted property owners.
- SB 258 will preempt the underground utility area designations that were included in SEA 213-2017 while adding oversight by the IURC. HB 1050 will narrow the parameters of the designations to residential zoned areas where utility infrastructure is buried.
- Both small cell bills have been heard in committee. HB 1050 was amended in committee and is headed to the House floor. Aim is working on a 2nd reading amendment to make the bill more palatable. HB 1050 will likely be heard on the floor early next week. SB 258 is still in the Senate Utilities Committee awaiting a vote.
- HB 1290 is a technical cleanup bill from HEA 1002-2017, last year’s major road funding bill.
- Due to modifications in the revenue sources there will be a reduction in the MVH percentages to locals, however, these changes will actually result in a minor increase of local funds.
- Currently, 50% of restricted MVH funds can be spent on maintenance. HB 1290 replaces the word maintenance with the defined term, preservation. The definition of preservation is derived from the LTAP guidance document for developing a municipal asset management plan.
BUILDING CODE REGULATING SPRINKLER SYSTEMS
- After clearing the House Veterans Affairs and Public Safety Committee, HB 1030 cleared the House – 68-28.
- This bill amends language regarding city or town building safety requirements for Class 2 structures, and prohibits a political subdivision from adopting an ordinance or other regulation requiring the installation of an automatic fire sprinkler system in a Class 2 structure.
- The bill constitutes a local pre-emption and has drawn opposition from some local firefighter groups.
CITY AND TOWN COURT AGREEMENTS
- A bill moving from the House to the Senate is a great example of giving local units the ability to make decisions that allow them to more efficiently execute their responsibilities.
- HB 1140 allows a county to enter into an agreement with a city court to handle ordinance violations on behalf of the county. The city court is allowed to maintain jurisdiction over matters addressed by the court.
- Rep. Doug Miller is spearheading the bill, Sen. Randy Head is the Senate sponsor.
AN AIM LEGISLATIVE MOMENT
“Annexation continues to be the big topic of the session. We probably have six or seven bills out there right now that have some annexation language associated with them. The main focus right now is on annexation waivers and those waivers that are older than 15 years. There seems to be a strong push from some interest groups, the Farm Bureau, the Association of Counties, the Manufacturers Association, to eliminate any of your waivers that are older than 15 years – make them invalid.”
– Matt Greller, CEO of Aim
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