House Bill 3185 - MUNI CD-RESTRICTIVE ZONING, which includes a home rule preemption, would prevent local governments from enforcing against a development any zoning or building ordinance that a municipality approves after a developer takes any one of the following five qualifying initial steps to advance the project:
has a preliminary meeting with local government staff,
applies for a building permit with the municipality,
presents a development plan to the city council,
substantially invests resources into planning the project, or
gives notice to the governing bodies of the developer’s intent to develop the property.
It also allows the developer to sue the State or municipality for zoning and building approvals and a minimum civil penalty of $5,000 if a city tries to enforce an ordinance in contravention of the law.
Status: HB 3185 was introduced in February and referred to the Rules Committee on February 15th. The bill was assigned to the Executive Committee on March 5th where it is still under consideration.
Sponsor: Rep. Deanne M. Mazzochi (R – 47th Dist., DuPage and Cook Counties)
Step #1: Visit www.elections.il.gov to find your legislators and their contact information.
Step #2: Email your legislators and let them know they should OPPOSE HB3185.
Why you should OPPOSE this bill: HB3185 turns longstanding Illinois zoning law upside down and establishes a property owner’s vested right to a zoning ordinance by doing nothing more than having a meeting with staff. Current Illinois law, outside certain circumstances, enables zoning authorities to amend and apply new zoning ordinances to properties where owners have not yet made significant financial investments in the physical improvement of the property. Once an owner has made significant financial investments that result in the physical improvement of the property, the owner has likely established a vested right to the continuation of the zoning that authorizes the improvements. This bill changes that and will have the effect of chilling dialogue between zoning staff and developers. In addition, the structure of the five qualifying steps that create the vested right is plainly absurd. Each of the five steps are routine parts of the development proposal and application process, so the very simple matter of having an idea that an developer shares with staff creates the vested right and prohibits the zoning authority from changing zoning laws as applied to a given property. Not only does this create an administrative nightmare, but it also will prevent governments from adjusting or amending zoning ordinances that are not serving the community well.
Recommendation: Contact your state legislators to OPPOSE HB3185.
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