The South Gate City Council on Tuesday voted preliminary approval of an ordinance designed to give homeowners with illegally converted garages a chance to avoid prosecution.
Homeowners who had their garages converted to living quarters before 1960 would be able to sell the property as it is under the proposed ordinance. Current law requires that the converted dwellings be changed back to garages before the homes can be sold.
However, under the proposed law homeowners will be given six months to apply for an exemption. They will receive a certificate allowing them to sell the property at any time without reconstructing the garages.
Officials have no way of knowing how many owners will take advantage of the program, but they anticipate considerable public response, City Manager Todd Argow said.