Friday, December 30, 2011

2011-12-30 "Judge upholds proposed Napa land use regulations" from "Vallejo Times-Herald"
NAPA -- A Napa Superior Court judge handed a Latino agency a defeat this week with a proposed ruling that Napa County's land use regulations do not violate state and federal fair housing and land use laws.
The court also ruled the county's "Density Bonus Ordinance" is valid, denying charges filed by Latinos Unidos del Valle de Napa y Solano (LUNA). The organization filed suit against the county in November 2009, alleging that county rules prevent construction of new affordable housing and have resulted in the loss of existing affordable housing.
In his decision, Judge Raymond Guadagni ruled the county's land use policies and practices do not discriminate against any group of people, including the disabled, farmworkers, families with children, female-headed households and Latinos. Further, he upheld the Density Bonus Ordinance, which allows the county to grant incentives or concessions to builders who agree to develop affordable housing beyond the minimums required by the zoning code.
This ruling was Guadagni's second and third in the LUNA lawsuit. The first, which challenged the sufficiency of the county's 2009 Housing Element to its General Plan, was denied in June.
The parties have 15 days to object to the proposed decision, after which the court is expected to make its final ruling.

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