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California governor signs state housing bill

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has signed a new California law that authorizes local cities and counties to extend subdivision maps by one year. The bipartisan bill, proposed by the California Building Industry Association (CBIA), goes into effect immediately.

The downturn has put a hold on housing construction throughout the state, and dozens of subdivision maps were set to expire, according to the CBIA.

“Had these maps expired, dozens of home builders representing hundreds of housing projects would have been sent to the back of the line,” said CBIA chairman Ray Becker. Going through the government approval process again can take five to seven years, according to the CBIA.

Asecond housing recovery bill proposed by the CBIA was also passed by the California legislature last week. AB 2604 encourages local governments to defer the collection of most development impact fees until a new home sells instead of when the building permit is obtained. The bill is on its way to the governor’s desk.