City News

Sober Living Homes: Important Information
posted on 03/24/2017.

The City of Huntington Beach is committed to maintaining and improving the quality of life throughout the community.  However, state law is clear in that cities can only treat a licensed “alcohol or drug abuse recovery or treatment facility” with six or fewer residents the same as it treats any single-family residence.  

In other words, a licensed group home serving six or fewer residents must be a permitted use in all residential zones in which a single-family home is permitted, with the same parking requirements, setbacks, design standards, and the like.  No conditional use permit, variance, or special permit can be required for these small group homes unless the same permit is required for single-family homes, nor can parking standards be higher, nor can special design standards be imposed. 

The statutes specifically state that these facilities cannot be considered to be boarding houses or rest homes or regulated as such.  Homeowners’ associations and other residents also cannot enforce restrictive covenants limiting uses of homes to “private residences” to exclude group homes for the disabled serving six or fewer persons.  This means that the City can only enforce Code violations, public disorderliness, public intoxication, etc.

Complaints can be submitted online on the City’s website under “I Want To” and then, “Report a Code Enforcement Violation.”

Lastly, the City is supportive of the following state legislation regulating sober living homes:  AB 2184 (Bogh); AB 2255 (Melendez); and AB 2403 (Bloom). 

Did you know?

The Public Works Graffiti Removal program responds to over 2,500 reports of graffiti on public and private property throughout the city.  Request Graffiti removal online.

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