What are CC&Rs?
Basically the CC&Rs (Covenants, Conditions and Restrictions) are deed restrictions that are contractual limitations of your rights as a property owner. Originated by the initial developer, these restrictions were placed on your property deed, recorded with El Dorado County, and made a condition of the purchase of your lot.
When you purchased your property, along with a myriad of other forms and documents, you signed a contract. What follows is a typical working of such a contract. While yours may differ in precise wording, in essence it states:
The undersigned declares that he has read and understands the deed restrictions/CC&Rs applicable to the subject property, and that the improvement herein applied for does not violate any such restrictions. I also certify that I have submitted plans to the Architectural Control Committee (ACC), or the local homeowners association, where required by said CC&Rs or deed restrictions, and have received approval for said improvement.
Since these restrictions are attached to the property, they are automatically passed along to any subsequent owner(s). In other words, the CC&Rs "run with the land."
What is the purpose of CC&Rs?
The purpose of CC&Rs is to protect the property values.
What is the CSD's role in CC&R enforcement?
In November of 1983, the voters of El Dorado Hills passed Ballot Measure B giving the El Dorado Hills Community Services District (CSD) the authority to enforce the CC&Rs. Attached to this measure was a special tax of up to $10 per year per parcel, to be used for any expenses incurred by the CSD in carrying out that enforcement. However, some are apprehensive of creating a disagreement between themselves and a neighbor who may be violating a provision of the applicable CC&Rs. For those who have such a concern, one option is to call the CC&R Compliance Officer or their respective CC&R Citizens Advisory Committee village representative.
The CC&R Citizen Advisory Committee is composed of up to three representatives from each village appointed by the District. The Committee makes policy recommendations to the CSD Board for pursuing further legal actions of violations.
In addition to following up on complaints, the CC&R Compliance Officer routinely drives through the villages spotting the violations that are the subject of the most common complaints. Timely reporting and prompt follow-up are usually successful. In fact, the CC&R Compliance Officer finds that most of the time, residents who have a violation are unaware of the restrictions. Once the restrictions are brought to the attention of the property owner, the violations are gladly and quickly corrected.
Where does the $10 I pay go each year?
The tax revenue collected for CC&R enforcement is deposited into a special fund with its own separate accounting. Expenses incurred for enforcement of the CC&Rs are charged to this fund. The budget for these funds and audit review of expenses are public information and available upon request at the CSD office.
What procedure does the District use in notifying and pursuing non-compliance of the CC&Rs?
The following steps are taken in pursuing compliance.
Investigation of CC&R Violations - When the CC&R Compliance Representative receives a complaint regarding an apparent CC&R violation, or observes a possible violation, the following steps are taken:
Determines which CC&R provision(s) applies to the parcel and subdivision unit.
Performs a visual inspection before taking further action.
Warning Notice – If the CC&R Compliance Representative determines that a property owner is engaging in conduct or activity or has created a condition which reasonably appears to be a violation of the CC&Rs applicable to the owner's property. The Officer will first issue a Warning Notice to both the recorded owner of the property and current resident if different from the owner requesting compliance within fourteen (14) days of the date of the Warning Notice.
1st Notice of Violation – If the resident and/or property owner fail to comply with the Warning Notice, CC&R Compliance Representative issues a 1st Notice of Violation to the resident and property owner requesting compliance within ten (10) days of the date of the 1st Notice of Violation.
2nd Notice of Violation – If the resident and/or property owner fail to comply with the 1st Notice of Violation, CC&R Compliance Representative issues a second notice to the resident and property owner advising them if they do not comply within ten (10) days of the date of the 2nd Notice of Violation, a hearing will be scheduled.
Notice of Hearing – If the resident and property owner fail to comply with the Warning Notice, 1st Notice of Violation, and 2nd Notice of Violation, the CC&R Compliance Representative issues a Notice of Hearing, via first-class mail, stating the violation and informs the resident and property owner of the District's intent to hold a hearing before the CC&R Citizens Advisory Committee at a specified date, time and place, postmarked not less than ten (10) days following the date of the Notice of Hearing.
Hearing Procedure – Hearings are conducted in open session. The chairperson of the CC&R Advisory Committee opens the hearing and allows a reasonable time for all testimony. If the Committee concurs with the allegation that a violation exists, the recommendation to initiate a Third & Final Notice of Violation is forwarded to the District Board by the Compliance Representative.
Legal notification of Third and Final Notice of Violation – By a motion of the Board of Directors, a demand letter is sent to the property owner and current resident by the District's legal counsel. This letter puts the property owner and current resident on notice that legal action for further non-compliance will be pursued.
The District's legal costs to pursue litigation must be paid by the property owner(s) named in the lawsuit.
What else do I need to know about ordering?
You should have received a copy of CC&R's when you purchased your home or property. If you can't find your copy, you may purchase a copy from the CSD for a nominal fee that covers the duplicating expense. When requesting a copy of your CC&R's, be sure to have your village name and unit number. Sometimes units within the same village have different CC&R's.
How can I get a copy of the CC&Rs for my lot?
You should have received a copy of CC&R's when you purchased your home or property. If you can't find your copy, all CC&Rs the District enforces are available on our website under Resident Services.
Why doesn't the CSD enforce all the CC&Rs?
This is one of the questions most frequently asked by residents. When CC&R enforcement was assumed by the District in 1984, the Board of Directors realized this task could be quite a large undertaking. Enforcing every section of all CC&Rs had the potential to become more than the part-time position could manage.
The volume of CC&R violations required the Board to establish a policy concerning the District's priority for enforcing the CC&Rs. The enforcement priorities established over the years include issues of vehicle parking, landscaping installation, renovations, maintenance, placement of satellite dishes and television antennas (no longer an enforcement issue due to recent FCC regulation changes), roof replacement and animals. This priority list does not exclude enforcement of other violations, especially if the violation threatens property or public safety.
As recently as 1991, the Board adopted a resolution to "enforce all violations of the recorded CC&Rs to the extent of its ability." The "extent of its ability", more now than in the past, is limited to resources that support a 20-hour per week part-time position and the factor of a growing population. The population within the jurisdiction of the EDH Community Services District has increased from approximately 1500 homes in 1984, to over 6000 homes in 2000, and over twice as many villages (and CC&Rs) with more developing at a steady rate.
What is the function of the DRC (Design Review Committee)?
The DRC is the successor of the Architectural Control Committee (ACC), which is cited in the majority of existing CC&R's. The EDHCSD Board of the Directors appoints DRC members. Their function is explained within the CC&R's. Its role is to examine and approve applications for property improvements under the authority of the CC&Rs. Applicants submit plans for improvements to their property to the DRC, If such improvement/change is in accordance with the CC&Rs for the property's location (Village/Unit), DRC approval is forthcoming. Any improvements/changes to the property must be submitted to the DRC through the application process. Failure to do so constitutes a CC&R violation. In many cases specific governing property improvement restrictions are vague or in some cases almost non-existent. In these instances the DRC relies on a set of policy guidelines established over the years in order to ensure consistency in approving applications. Property owners may review these guidelines at the CSD office or at the District WEB Site www.edhcsd.org.
The DRC meets weekly to review the plans submitted for approval. If you are required by your CC&R's to submit property improvement plans for DRC approval, you may deliver them to the District Office at 1021 Harvard Way, or call 916-933-5426 for further details.
Why haven't the CC&Rs been changed so that they are uniform throughout El Dorado Hills?
This would be very difficult to achieve. Depending upon the unit within a subdivision, 50% to 75%, and in some cases over 90%, of all property owners in a unit must agree to any change in the deed restriction for that unit. It is the responsibility of the property owners to change the CC&R's for their respective unit(s). The CSD does not have the authority to change the CC&R whether through addition or deletion.
Note: "Frequently Asked CC&R Questions: was developed by the volunteer members of the 2001 CC&R Task Force. The District appreciates the time and effort of the following Task Force member: Joe Barry, Kelly Campbell, Dave Howald, Lemuel G. Lloyd Jr., George Rollins and Erin Whatley. Also, Ex Officio members from the CSD Board included Brett McFadden and Norb Witt.
What the CC&Rs don't cover...
Several times a day the CSD receives complaints, usually anonymously, regarding alleged violations of the CC&Rs. Often the situation is not an actual violation, or the situation being complained about is not under the jurisdiction of the CSD or CC&Rs. To assist your reaching the appropriate agency, the following is a list of situations the CSD does not handle and refers to other authorities:
Animal Disturbance or Lost & Found
While barking is a natural form of canine communication, excessive barking can be a disturbance. There is an ordinance in El Dorado County that pertains to dogs and other animals disturbing the peace. For more information and on how to report animal disturbances please visit http://co.el-dorado.ca.us/AnimalServices/barkingdogs.html or call (530) 621-5795.
Lost & Found
Losing a pet can be very upsetting and stressful. Please visit http://co.el-dorado.ca.us/AnimalServices/findingyourlostpet.html to assist you with your search in finding your lost pet.
Noise created by construction activity.
There is not a County Ordinance regarding specific beginning and ending times for construction activities and the noise volume associated with it. However, after contacting the County Building Department Code Compliance office, County staff suggests that residents ask the construction workers to postpone loud, noisy work until after 7:00 a.m. on weekdays (8:00 a.m. on weekends). If that approach doesn't produce the desired results, the Sheriff may be able to determine if the construction noise is "disturbing the peace." The Sheriff can be contacted at (530) 621-5655.
For roadway drainage problems, please contact El Dorado County Department of Transportation, Maintenance at (530) 642-4909 or visit http://co.el-dorado.ca.us/DOT/index.html
Did you know that you may be harming your local creek or river if you drain your swimming pool or spa water into the storm drain? For additional information on this topic, please review these links or call the El Dorado County Storm Water Coordinator at (530) 621-5927.
Please contact the El Dorado Hills Fire Department at (916) 933-6623 or visit www.edhfire.com.
Graffiti is a form of vandalism. The CSD only provides corrective maintenance for graffiti that was done on District property. All other properties damaged by graffiti should immediately report the activity to the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department at (530) 621-5655 or visit http://www.edcgov.us/sheriff/disclaimer.asp to create an online report.
Home-based Businesses / Mobile Vendors
El Dorado County does allow home-based business. For more information, please contact (530) 621-5800 or visit http://co.el-dorado.ca.us/taxcollector/. Please note, daycare providers are allowed up to six children before they are required to have a license from the State of California. To check for an active business license, please visit http://main.co.el-dorado.ca.us/CGI/WWB012/WWM200/T?S=A .
Residents wanting to remove a tree from their property may be required to have either County approval or District approval. For County information, please contact Building Services at (530) 621-5775 or visit http://co.el-dorado.ca.us/building/index.asp . To determine if the District requires approval, please review your current CC&Rs for your village. The District’s Board of Directors approved Article III, Preservation of Oak Trees, Oak Tree Remova which may pertain to your village. You may also contact the District at (916) 933-6624 for assistance.
Call before you dig.
Underground Service Alert, known as "USA", provides a high quality Underground Facility Damage Prevention service to Central / Northern California and Nevada. USA began operation in May of 1975 and incorporated as a Non Profit Mutual Benefit Corporation in 1986. USA's purpose is to receive planned excavation reports from public and private excavators and to transmit those planned excavation reports to all participating members of USA who may have underground facilities at the location of excavation. The USA Members will either mark or stake their facility, provide information or give clearance to dig. Please contact USA at 800-227-2600 or visit their website at http://www.usanorth.org.
How do the CC&Rs get amended?
CC&Rs may only be amended by the legal property owners within the subdivision. If there is more than one owner of a single property, then all property owners must sign the amendment unless the CC&Rs state otherwise. The percentage of owners needed to pass an amendment differs among the various CC&R documents, so you should review your CC&Rs and verify the percentage needed prior to starting. The guide below is an overview of the process and format for submitting CC&R amendments to El Dorado County. Nothing in the guide is to be construed as a promise or guarantee of amendments to CC&Rs.
A Guide to Amending CC&Rs
CC&Rs per Village