topleft CSBA.org >  Services >  Governance Technology > 

Legal Resources | Government Code |  GC  53313.5  

Mello-Roos Community Facilities Act; General Provisions   

arrow Previous bar Next arrow

A community facilities district may also finance the purchase, construction, expansion, improvement, or rehabilitation of any real or other tangible property with an estimated useful life of five years or longer or may finance planning and design work that is directly related to the purchase, construction, expansion, or rehabilitation of any real or tangible property. The facilities need not be physically located within the district. A district may not lease out facilities that it has financed except pursuant to a lease agreement or annexation agreement entered into prior to January 1, 1988. A district may only finance the purchase of facilities whose construction has been completed, as determined by the legislative body, before the resolution of formation to establish the district is adopted pursuant to Section 53325.1, except that a district may finance the purchase of facilities completed after the adoption of the resolution of formation if the facility was constructed as if it had been constructed under the direction and supervision, or under the authority of, the local agency that will own or operate the facility. For example, a community facilities district may finance facilities, including, but not limited to, the following:

(a) Local park, recreation, parkway, and open-space facilities.

(b) Elementary and secondary schoolsites and structures provided that the facilities meet the building area and cost standards established by the State Allocation Board.

(c) Libraries.

(d) Child care facilities, including costs of insuring the facilities against loss, liability insurance in connection with the operation of the facility, and other insurance costs relating to the operation of the facilities, but excluding all other operational costs. However, the proceeds of bonds issued pursuant to this chapter shall not be used to pay these insurance costs.

(e) The district may also finance the construction or undergrounding of water transmission and distribution facilities, natural gas pipeline facilities, telephone lines, facilities for the transmission or distribution of electrical energy, and cable television lines to provide access to those services to customers who do not have access to those services or to mitigate existing visual blight. The district may enter into an agreement with a public utility to utilize those facilities to provide a particular service and for the conveyance of those facilities to the public utility. "Public utility" shall include all utilities, whether public and regulated by the Public Utilities Commission, or municipal. If the facilities are conveyed to the public utility, the agreement shall provide that the cost or a portion of the cost of the facilities that are the responsibility of the utility shall be refunded by the public utility to the district or improvement area thereof, to the extent that refunds are applicable pursuant to (1) the Public Utilities Code or rules of the Public Utilities Commission, as to utilities regulated by the commission, or (2) other laws regulating public utilities. Any reimbursement made to the district shall be utilized to reduce or minimize the special tax levied within the district or improvement area, or to construct or acquire additional facilities within the district or improvement area, as specified in the resolution of formation.

(f) The district may also finance the acquisition, improvement, rehabilitation, or maintenance of any real or other tangible property, whether privately or publicly owned, for flood and storm protection services, including, but not limited to, storm drainage and treatment systems and sandstorm protection systems.

(g) The district may also pay in full all amounts necessary to eliminate any fixed special assessment liens or to pay, repay, or defease any obligation to pay or any indebtedness secured by any tax, fee, charge, or assessment levied within the area of a community facilities district or may pay debt service on that indebtedness. When the amount financed by the district is to pay a tax, fee, charge, or assessment imposed by a public agency other than the one conducting the proceedings, and if the amount provided to the other public agency will not be entirely used to pay off or prepay an assessment lien or special tax obligation pursuant to the property owner's legal right to do so, the written consent of the other public agency is required. In addition, tax revenues of a district may be used to make lease or debt service payments on any lease, lease-purchase contract, or certificate of participation used to finance facilities authorized to be financed by the district.

(h) Any other governmental facilities that the legislative body creating the community facilities district is authorized by law to contribute revenue to, or construct, own, or operate. However, the district shall not operate or maintain or, except as otherwise provided in subdivisions (e) and (k), have any ownership interest in any facilities for the transmission or distribution of natural gas, telephone service, or electrical energy.

(i) (1) A district may also pay for the following:

(A) Work deemed necessary to bring buildings or real property, including privately owned buildings or real property, into compliance with seismic safety standards or regulations. Only work certified as necessary to comply with seismic safety standards or regulations by local building officials may be financed. No project involving the dismantling of an existing building and its replacement by a new building, nor the construction of a new or substantially new building may be financed pursuant to this subparagraph. Work on qualified historical buildings or structures shall be done in accordance with the State Historical Building Code (Part 2.7 (commencing with Section 18950) of Division 13 of the Health and Safety Code).

(B) In addition, within any county or area designated by the President of the United States or by the Governor as a disaster area or for which the Governor has proclaimed the existence of a state of emergency because of earthquake damage, a district may also pay for any work deemed necessary to repair any damage to real property directly or indirectly caused by the occurrence of an earthquake cited in the President's or the Governor's designation or proclamation, or by aftershocks associated with that earthquake, including work to reconstruct, repair, shore up, or replace any building damaged or destroyed by the earthquake, and specifically including, but not limited to, work on any building damaged or destroyed in the Loma Prieta earthquake that occurred on October 17, 1989, or by its aftershocks. Work may be financed pursuant to this subparagraph only on property or buildings identified in a resolution of intention to establish a community facilities district adopted within seven years of the date on which the county or area is designated as a disaster area by the President or by the Governor or on which the Governor proclaims for the area the existence of a state of emergency.

(2) Work on privately owned property, including reconstruction or replacement of privately owned buildings pursuant to subparagraph (B) of paragraph (1), may only be financed by a tax levy if all of the votes cast on the question of levying the tax, vote in favor of levying the tax, or with the prior written consent to the tax of the owners of all property that may be subject to the tax, in that case the prior written consent shall be deemed to constitute a vote in favor of the tax and any associated bond issue. Any district created to finance seismic safety work on privately owned buildings, including repair, reconstruction, or replacement of privately owned buildings pursuant to this subdivision, shall consist only of lots or parcels that the legislative body finds have buildings that were damaged or destroyed by the earthquake cited pursuant to subparagraph (B) of paragraph (1) or by the aftershocks of that earthquake.

(j) A district may also pay for the following:

(1) Work deemed necessary to repair and abate damage caused to privately owned buildings and structures by soil deterioration. "Soil deterioration" means a chemical reaction by soils that causes structural damage or defects in construction materials including concrete, steel, and ductile or cast iron. Only work certified as necessary by local building officials may be financed. No project involving the dismantling of an existing building or structure and its replacement by a new building or structure, nor the construction of a new or substantially new building or structure may be financed pursuant to this paragraph.

(2) Work on privately owned buildings and structures pursuant to this subdivision, including reconstruction, repair, and abatement of damage caused by soil deterioration, may only be financed by a tax levy if all of the votes cast on the question of levying the tax vote in favor of levying the tax. Any district created to finance the work on privately owned buildings or structures, including reconstruction, repair, and abatement of damage caused by soil deterioration, shall consist only of lots or parcels on which the legislative body finds that the buildings or structures to be worked on pursuant to this subdivision suffer from soil deterioration.

(k) A district may also finance the acquisition, improvement, rehabilitation, or maintenance of any real or other tangible property, whether privately or publicly owned, for the purposes of removal or remedial action for the cleanup of any hazardous substance released or threatened to be released into the environment. As used in this subdivision, "remedial action" and "removal" shall have the meaning set forth in Sections 25322 and 25323, respectively, of the Health and Safety Code, and "hazardous substance" shall have the meaning set forth in Section 25281 of the Health and Safety Code.

(l) A district may also finance and refinance the acquisition, installation, and improvement of energy efficiency, water conservation, and renewable energy improvements that are affixed, as specified in Section 660 of the Civil Code, to or on real property and in buildings, whether the real property or buildings are privately or publicly owned. Energy efficiency, water conservation, and renewable energy improvements financed by a district may only be installed on a privately owned building and on privately owned real property with the prior written consent of the owner or owners of the building or real property. This chapter shall not be used to finance installation of energy efficiency, water conservation, and renewable energy improvements on a privately owned building or on privately owned real property in connection with the initial construction of a residential building unless the initial construction is undertaken by the intended owner or occupant.

(m) Any improvement on private property authorized to be financed by this section shall constitute a "public facility" for purposes of this chapter and a "public improvement" for purposes of Part 1 (commencing with Section 3100) and Part 2 (commencing with Section 3110) of Division 4.5 of the Streets and Highways Code, whether the improvement is owned by a private entity, if the legislative body has determined that the improvement provides a public benefit, or the improvement is owned by a public agency.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 493, Sec. 1.)