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Landowner Notification

In the November 1998 general election, Oregon voters approved Ballot Measure 56 (BM56). The measure requires cities and counties to send notice to affected property owners when the city or county makes a change in the zoning of their property. This can be the result of an adoption or change of a city or county zoning map or ordinance in a manner that changes the underlying zone, or limits or prohibits previously allowed uses.

Measure 56 also requires the Department of Land Conservation and Development (DLCD) to notify cities and counties when the legislature enacts a new law, or the Land Conservation and Development Commission adopts a new administrative rule, that limits or prohibits previously allowed uses.

When state planning laws or rules are changed that might cause a property to be rezoned or restrict its use, a two-step notification is required. The state, through DLCD, must first notify every local government about the change. The local government must then mail a copy of DLCD's notice to every landowner whose property might be "rezoned." Each local government is required to make a decision about whether to mail the notice to any of the landowners in its jurisdiction, and if so, which ones. "Rezoning" occurs when the governing body of a county or city: "Changes base zoning classifications of the property; OR adopts or amends an ordinance in a manner that limits or prohibits land uses previously allowed in the affected zone."

DLCD is required to reimburse local governments for all usual and reasonable costs of providing notice prompted by state action. Additionally, the law specifies the content of the written individual notice to landowners.

In 2003, legislators passed Senate Bill 516 (SB 516), modifying BM 56 notice requirements. Provisions of SB 516 include an increase of state and local jurisdiction notice time. It also changes certain wording in the notice to landowners. SB 516 became effective Jan. 1, 2004. A review of changes made by SB 516 outlines the differences.

Guide for Local Governments

State statute specifies a dual system of paying for the mailing of notices to landowners whose property may be affected:

  • If the local government initiates the rezoning, the local government does the mailing and pays for it.
  • If the rezoning is state-initiated by a requirement of periodic review OR by a new or amendment to administrative rule or statute, then the local government does the mailing and DLCD "shall reimburse the local government for all actual and reasonable costs of providing notice."

The required form and a memo describing reimbursement procedures are provided here.

For legal questions, please contact your local legal counsel.

Relevant Statutes

For cities: ORS 227.186
For counties: ORS 215.503
For the state: ORS 197.047

Related Documents

Reimbursement Form
DLCD Memo describing Reimbursement Process
Attorney General Memo to DLCD
Example Notice – Notice to Property Owners on House Bill 3298 (2009)


Amy Mettler
Chief Financial Officer
Phone: 503-580-9060