Santa Cruz County California is a special example of the widespread use of fraud in denying appeals rights, abusing citizens, passing invalid ordinances and violating California state laws and regulations to subvert California's local Appeals Board process. It is now facing a series of lawsuits and now appears to have a liability on the order of 100 million dollars after more than 30 years of abusive and fraudulent acts that continue to the present time. Most recently an illegal action by the Board of Supervisors on June 2, 2009 removed the existing Building Appeals Board members the Supervisors had just appointed just a few months earlier. Supervisors then appointed themselves as the Appeals Board in order to quash the Board that had begun exposing an increasing number of improper and illegal acts by senior county staff and because a US District Court action pending against the County of Santa Cruz and the individual Supervisors holds them personally accountable.
This website is created as a resource for citizens, attorneys, local Appeals Board members, the media and government officials regarding the right to a fair and impartial administrative appeal from local government decisions regarding building codes and construction requirements in California. This resource is intended to save the public and attorneys the many hundreds of hours that were needed to locate and bring this information to the public. Many documents posted here are in PDF Format to assist the user with downloading and using what is needed.
It has been found that illegal abuse of authority in the building process and the denial of the right of appeals by local governments is common among California city and county governments. Most citizens are not aware of these constitutionally based rights and many local officials are jealous of their authority and are willing to break the law and violate the Constitution and state statutes and regulations to keep this from the public. State agencies have been provided little power by the Legislature to enforce these laws or are simply ignoring the problem and its destructive impact on human lives and the health and safety of the public.
2007 California Building Code - Title 24, Part 2, Vol. 1, Page 11 - California Code of Regulations
Section 108.8 - Appeals Board
108.8.1 General. Every city, county or city and county shall establish a local appeals board and a housing appeals board. The local appeals board and housing appeals board shall each be comprised of at least five voting members that shall serve at the pleasure of the city, county or city and county. Appointments shall not be employees of the jurisdiction and shall consist of members who are qualified and specifically knowledgeable in the California Building Standards Codes and applicable local ordinances.
108.8.3 Appeals. Except as otherwise provided in law, any person, firm or corporation adversely affected by a decision, order or determination by a city, county or city and county relating to the application of building standards published in the California Building Standards Code, or any other applicable rule or regulation adopted by the Department of Housing and Community Development, or any lawfully enacted ordinance by a city, county or city and county, may appeal the issue for resolution to the local appeals board or housing appeals board as appropriate. The local appeals board shall hear appeals relating to new building construction and the housing appeals board shall hear appeals relating to existing buildings.