2023 Bills

SB 174: Streamlining Subdivisions and ADU Clarifications

This bill passed the House 55-13 and passed the Senate 24-1. Review our tracker for more information.

Libertas Institute supports this bill

Staff review of this legislation finds that it aligns with our principles and should therefore be passed into law.

As home prices have skyrocketed due to the housing shortage, Utah lawmakers have been looking at various ways to tackle the issue. Among the bills under consideration this session, Senator Lincoln Fillmore’s bill, Senate Bill 174 addresses the housing shortage in a serious and market-friendly way.

For example, SB 174 streamlines the process for property owners who wish to subdivide their land and build homes. Currently, many cities and counties subject property owners to a process that is lengthy, unpredictable, and ultimately results in the homes built on the lots costing more than necessary. With the changes contained in SB 174, when a property owner wants to subdivide their land, the review and approval processes will contain one public hearing as an opportunity for the public to provide input (as opposed to two or more). The approval process will also be much more “administrative,” resulting in further efficiencies and cost savings.

In addition, SB 174 enables a property owner who wants to convert a garage (that shares a wall with the home) into a living space, they have the freedom to do so under a local internal accessory dwelling unit ordinance. Furthermore, cities are prevented from imposing certain parking restrictions and requiring costly and unnecessary “internal connections” between the home and the accessory dwelling unit.

The provisions in SB 174 are welcomed and represent a substantive increase in personal freedom and housing market deregulation.