THE SENATE

S.B. NO.

3324

THIRTY-FIRST LEGISLATURE, 2022

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

RELATING to infrastructure MAINTENANCE IN HOUSING SUBDIVISIONS.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. The legislature finds that some housing subdivisions in the State have been approved without a requirement that the lot owners fund the repair and maintenance of the private roads and other infrastructure within the subdivision. Unlike condominium property regimes, many housing subdivisions are not subject to a statutory framework or an oversight agency to oversee the creation, monitoring, training, and auditing of the various volunteer associations responsible for the subdivision infrastructure. Accordingly, the judicial system has created a patchwork system through judgments in various lawsuits that does not provide adequate oversight.

The legislature further finds that in the case of Paradise Hui Hanalike v. Hawaiian Paradise Park Corp., 66 Haw. 362, 662 P.2d 211 (1983), the Hawaii supreme court found that there exists a legal duty for property owners whose property abut subdivision roads to contribute to the necessary maintenance of those subdivision roads. More recently, in Kaanapali Hillside Homeowners' Ass'n v. Doran, 112 Hawai'i 356, 145 P.3d 899 (App. 2006), property owners questioned an association's authority to collect an assessment because that authority was not recorded against the property owners' lot. Currently, there is no oversight agency for some associations whose assessment collections are more than $1 million per year. The inability to collect assessments from lot owners of some subdivisions with no court-approved corporation, association, or entity result in substandard and deeply rutted roads that can delay emergency vehicles that respond to emergency situations including crime scenes. Further, numerous structures have been destroyed because a fire truck was not able to arrive in time.

The legislature believes that, because the counties approve housing subdivisions and collect real property taxes from the owners in those subdivisions, it is appropriate that counties establish rules and procedures for, conduct audits of, and act as an oversight agency of the housing subdivisions or be required to maintain and repair the infrastructure of the housing subdivisions.

The purpose of this Act is to require:

(1) Lot owners in a subdivision to pay for the repair and maintenance of subdivision roads where the applicable deeds do not specify a requirement or are otherwise subject to chapter 421J, Hawaii Revised Statutes, and to require the counties to provide support for applicable assessments; and

(2) The counties to provide oversight of housing subdivisions where no oversight authority has been established.

SECTION 2. The Hawaii Revised Statutes is amended by adding a new chapter to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"CHAPTER

HOUSING SUBDIVISIONS

   -1 Definitions. For purposes of this chapter:

"Housing subdivisions" or "subdivision" means land that has been divided into two or more lots for the construction of housing under the applicable county code, including the designation of easements for the purpose of sale, lease, rental, or transfer of title and is not a planned community.

"Maintenance" shall include the costs to management, maintenance, and repair of roads and other infrastructure, and insurance costs and fees for the management and collection of assessments.

"Planned community" shall have the same meaning as in section 421J-2.

   -2 Road repair and maintenance. (a) A lot owner in a subdivision that is not a planned community shall pay assessments, as provided by this chapter, necessary for the repair and maintenance of the subdivision roads. The assessments shall be determined by an association, corporation, or court-appointed entity to assess and collect fees for the repair and maintenance of the subdivision roads.

(b) If no court-appointed or deed-designated entity is authorized to assess and collect fees for the repair and maintenance of the subdivision roads, the county in which the subdivision is located shall assess and collect fees from the lot owners and expend those funds to repair and maintain the subdivision roads.

(c) Each county responsible for the assessment and collection of fees for the repair and maintenance of subdivision roads may designate each applicable subdivision as a special improvement district pursuant to section 46-80.5 or a community facilities district pursuant to section 46-80.1.

(d) This chapter shall be subject to the county's authority or power within section 46-80.5 or 46-80.1.

   -3 County duties regarding housing subdivisions; road maintenance and repair. (a) Each county shall provide:

(1) Training to volunteer association boards on their responsibilities, including conducting effective meetings pursuant to established rules of order;

(2) Auditing services on the assessments and use of funds for the repair and maintenance of subdivision roads; and

(3) Arbitration and mediation services to resolve disputes between a lot owner and the entity responsible for the assessment and collection of fees for the repair and maintenance of subdivision roads.

(b) A county may assess the assisted individuals or entities a reasonable fee for services provided pursuant to subsection (a)."


SECTION 3. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

_____________________________

 

 


 


 

Report Title:

Housing Subdivisions; Road Repair and Maintenance; Assessments; County Duties

 

Description:

Requires lot owners to pay for the repair and maintenance of subdivision roads where the applicable deed does not specify that requirement. Authorizes counties to assess and collect fees for repair and maintenance of subdivision roads if no court-appointed or deed-designated entity is appointed. Requires counties to provide: (1) training to associations on their responsibilities; (2) services for certain subdivision assessments; and (3) arbitration and mediation services to resolve disputes between a lot owner and the entity responsible for assessment.

 

 

 

The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.