Ordinance of the Mt. Shasta City Council amending municipal code relating to accessory dwelling units

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald



WHEREAS, the California legislature in 2016 approved three bills relaxing regulations around Accessory Dwelling Units to address the lack of housing options in the state; and

WHEREAS, Accessory Dwelling Units, also referred to as “mother-in-law units” or “granny flats”, are a secondary housing unit with a complete independent living facility for one or more persons on an existing, single-family property; and

WHEREAS, the City of Mt. Shasta has maintained regulations related to Accessory Dwelling Units since 1992 in Chapter 18.22 of the Mt. Shasta Municipal Code; and

WHEREAS, the City of Mt. Shasta’s regulations are not in compliance with the changes to state regulation on Accessory Dwelling Units which has triggered a revision of Chapter 18.22;

NOW, THEREFORE, the City Council of the City of Mt. Shasta does ordain as follows:


This ordinance is classified as a codified ordinance of a permanent nature.


There is hereby amended to the Title 18, Chapter 22 of the Mt. Shasta Municipal Code an amended Chapter 18.22 as follows:

Chapter 18.22

Accessory Dwelling Units

18.22.010 Purpose

18.22.020 Applicability

18.22.030 Development Standards

18.22.040 Permit Requirements

18.22.050 Review Process for Accessory Structure Not Complying with Development Standards

18.22.060 Findings

18.22.070 Definitions

18.22.010 Purpose

This Chapter provides for accessory dwelling units on lots developed or proposed to be developed with single-family dwellings. Such accessory dwellings contribute needed housing to the community’s housing stock. Thus, accessory dwelling units are a residential use which is consistent with the General Plan objectives and zoning regulations and which enhances housing opportunities, including near transit on single family lots.

18.22.020 Applicability

The provisions of this Chapter apply to all lots that are occupied with a single-family dwelling unit and zoned residential. Accessory dwelling units do exceed the allowable density for the lot upon which the accessory dwelling unit is located, and are a residential use that is consistent with the existing general plan and zoning designation for the lot.

18.22.030 Development


A. An accessory dwelling unit within an existing space including the primary structure, attached or detached garage or other accessory structure shall be permitted ministerially with a building permit regardless of all other standards within the Chapter if complying with Building and safety codes, independent exterior access from the existing residence, and sufficient side and rear setbacks for fire safety.

B. All accessory dwelling units must meet all general requirements as follows:

 1. The unit is not intended for sale separate from the primary residence and may be rented.

 2. The lot is zoned for residential and contains an existing, single-family dwelling.


The accessory dwelling unit is either attached to the existing dwelling or detached from the existing dwelling and located on the same lot as the existing dwelling.

 4. The increased floor area of an attached accessory dwelling unit shall not exceed 50 percent of the existing living area, with a maximum increase in floor area of 1,200 square feet.

 5. The total area of floor space for a detached accessory dwelling unit shall not exceed 1,200 square feet.

 6. Local building code requirements that apply to detached dwellings are followed

 7. No passageway shall be required in conjunction with the construction of an accessory dwelling unit.

 8. No setback shall be required for an existing garage that is converted to an accessory dwelling unit, and a setback of no more than five feet from the side and rear lot lines shall be required for an accessory dwelling unit that is constructed above a garage.

 9. Accessory dwelling units shall not be required to provide fire sprinklers if they are not required for the primary residence and may employ alternative methods for fire protection.

C. Parking requirements for accessory dwelling units shall not exceed one parking space per unit or per bedroom. These spaces may be provided as tandem parking, including on an existing driveway or in setback areas, excluding the non-driveway setback.

D. Parking requirements are not required if:

 1. The accessory dwelling unit is in a historically register building or historic district

 2. The accessory dwelling unit is located within one-half mile of public transit, including transit stations and bus stations.

 3. When there is a car share vehicle located within one block of the accessory dwelling unit.

E. Replacement parking is required when a garage, carport, or covered parking structure is demolished or converted in conjunction with the construction of an accessory dwelling unit.

18.22.040 Permit Requirements

Accessory Dwelling Units shall be permitted ministerially, in compliance with this Chapter within 120 days of application. The Planning Department shall issue a building permit or zoning certificate to establish an accessory dwelling unit in compliance with this Chapter if all applicable requirements are met in Section 18.22.030. The Planning Department may approve an accessory dwelling unit that is not in compliance with Section 18.22.030 as set forth in Section 18.22.050.

18.22.050 Review Process for Accessory Structure Not

Complying with Development Standards

An accessory dwelling unit that does not comply with standards in Section 18.22.030 may be permitted with a zoning certificate or an administrative use permit at the discretion of the Planning Department subject to findings in Section 18.22.060.

18.22.060 Findings

A. In order to deny an administrative use permit under Section 18.22.050, the Planning Department shall find that the Accessory Dwelling Unit would be detrimental to the public health and safety or would introduce unreasonable privacy impacts to the immediate neighbors.

B. In order to approve an administrative use permit under Section 18.22.050 to waive required dwelling unit parking, the Planning Department shall find that additional or new on-site parking would be detrimental to the purpose of this chapter 18.22, and that granting the waiver will meet the purposes of this Chapter.

18.22.070 Definitions

The following definitions shall apply to this Chapter:

A. Accessory Dwelling Unit means an attached or detached residential dwelling unit which provides complete independent living facilities for one or more persons. It shall include permanent provisions for living, sleeping, eating, cooking, and sanitation on the same parcel as the single-family dwelling is situated. An accessory dwelling includes, but is not limited to, the following:

 1. An efficiency unit, as defined in Section 17958.1 of Health and Safety Code.

 2. A manufactured home, as defined in Section 18007 of the Health and Safety Code.

B. Existing Structure for the purposes of defining an allowable space that can be converted to an Accessory Dwelling Unit means within the four walls and roofline of a structure existing on or after January 1, 2017 that can be made safely habitable under local building codes at the determination of the building official regardless of any non-compliance with zoning standards.

C. Living Area means the interior habitable area of a dwelling unit including basements and attics but does not include a garage or accessory structure.

D. Passageway means a pathway that is unobstructed clear to the sky and extends from a street to one entrance of the accessory dwelling unit.


Any provisions of the Mt. Shasta Municipal Code, or appendices thereto, or any other ordinances of the City inconsistent herewith, to the extent of such inconsistencies and no further, are hereby repealed.


Section 2 of this ordinance is the sole portion of this Ordinance that requires publication in the codification of the Mt. Shasta Municipal Code.


If any section, sentence, clause, or phrase of this Chapter is for any reason held to be invalid or unconstitutional by a decision of any court of competent jurisdiction, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining portions of this Chapter. The City Council hereby declares that it would have passed this Ordinance and adopted this Chapter and each section, sentence, clause, or phrase thereof, irrespective of the fact that any one or more sections, subsections, sentences, clauses, or phrases were to be declared invalid or unconstitutional.

PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 11th day of September, 2017.

AYES: Engstrom, Stearns, Stackfleth, Wagner, Morter

NOES: None



DATED: September 11, 2017


Kathryn M. Wilson,

Deputy City Clerk

Kathy Morter, Mayor

7912 msan se20c