§ 87.04.060  Parcel Merger.
   Parcel Mergers may be mandatory mergers initiated by the County or voluntary mergers initiated by the property owner.
   (a)   Procedures for Mandatory Merger of Contiguous Parcels.  Two or more parcels may be merged as follows.
      (1)   Process.  When the County initiates a merger of substandard lots, noticing shall be done in compliance with the procedures outlined in Map Act Chapter 3, Article 1.5.
      (2)   Requirements.  A mandatory merger of substandard lots may be initiated by the County.  A lot may be merged with a contiguous lot held by the same owner.  If any one of the contiguous lots or units held by the same owner does not conform to the standards for minimum lot size or dimension specified by the applicable land use district the following requirements shall be satisfied:
         (A)   At least one of the affected lots is not developed with any structure for which a building permit was issued or for which a building permit was not required at the time of construction, or is developed only with an accessory structure or accessory structures, or is developed with a single structure, other than an accessory structure, that is also partially sited on a contiguous lot involved in the proposed merger; and
         (B)   At least one of the affected lots must have one or more of the following conditions:
            (I)   The lot comprises less than 5,000 square feet in area at the time of the  determination of merger;
            (II)   The lot was not created in compliance with applicable laws and ordinances in effect at the time of its creation;
            (III)   The lot does not meet current standards for sewage disposal and/or domestic water supply;
            (IV)   The lot does not meet slope stability and/or density standards, as specified by this Code, Specific Plan or the General Plan;
            (V)   The lot has no legal access which is adequate for vehicular and emergency equipment access and maneuverability;
            (VI)   The development of the lot would create health or safety hazards;
            (VII)   The lot is inconsistent with the General Plan and any applicable specific plan, other than minimum lot size or density  standards.
      (2)   Findings.  The Director shall find that all of the following are true before recording a Notice of Merger.
         (A)   The parcels to be merged at the time of merger are under common ownership;
         (B)   The parcels as merged will be consistent with or be more closely compatible with the applicable land use zoning district regulations and any other planning policies relating to the subject property and parcel configuration;
         (C)   The parcels as merged will not be deprived of legal access as a result of the merger and access to the adjoining parcels will not be restricted by the merger; and
         (D)   All current and any delinquent taxes have been paid on all affected parcels.
         (E)   One or more of the conditions described in § 66451.11(b) have been met.
   (b)   Procedures for Voluntary Merger of Contiguous Parcels.
      (1)   Description and Purpose.  It is the purpose of this Section to allow property owners to request a voluntary merger of contiguous parcels that are under the same ownership, pursuant to Map Act §§ 66499.20 1/2 or 66499.20 3/4 pertaining to the reversion to acreage.
      (2)   Process.  The property owner shall file an application for a parcel merger. The review authority shall be the Director and review of the application shall be subject to the provisions for Staff Review without Notice procedures. The merger of the subject parcels become effective when the Director causes a Notice of Merger specifying the names of the record owners and a description of the real property to be filed for record with the County Recorder.
      (3)   Findings.  The Director shall find that all of the following are true before recording a Notice of Merger.
         (A)   The parcels to be merged at the time of merger are under common ownership;
         (B)   The parcels as merged will not be deprived of legal access as a result of the merger and access to the adjoining parcels will not be restricted by the merger; and
         (C)   All current and any delinquent taxes have been paid on all affected parcels.
   (c)   Post-Approval Actions.
      (1)   If the merger is processed in compliance with Map Act Chapter 3, Article 1.5, the Director shall submit a Notice of Merger to the County Recorder for recordation in compliance with Map Act § 66451.19.
      (2)   If the merger is processed in compliance with Map Act §§ 66499-3/4 or 66499-1/2, the County Surveyor shall follow the procedures for the approval and recordation of a Parcel Map in compliance with § 87.03.060 (Parcel Map Approval) or for the approval and recordation of a Final Map in compliance with § 87.03.100 (Final Map Approval).
   (d)   Requirements for Unmerger of Parcels.  The unmerger of parcels within the County shall comply with Map Act Chapter 3, Article 1.7.
(Ord. 4011, passed - -2007)