AB 2234 Improves Building Permit Process

te moving through the legislative process under the radar, AB 2234, authored by Assemblymembers Rivas (Salinas) and Grayson (Concord), will have an important impact on the process for post entitlement residential building permits. While recent legislation, including SB 330, has established new requirements under the Permit Streamlining Act (PSA) for the completeness of a permit application and the timeline for approvals, until now these requirements have only applied to discretionary approvals (such as conditional use permits and tentative subdivision maps) and not ministerial acts typically approved by city staff and not by elected or appointed bodies (like building and demolition permits).

AB 2234 was introduced to respond to concerns that projects that have obtained entitlements face ministerial permit process delays that push out timelines and increase development costs. Without a timeline that governs the post entitlement permit process, the timeline for beginning construction can get bogged down indefinitely even after all discretionary entitlements have been received.

Now localities will be required to publish formal application checklists for post-entitlement permits and adhere to specified deadlines:

  • After an application has been received, localities have 15 business days to identify specific information from the checklist that is missing or the application is deemed complete.
  • With few exceptions, localities have 30 business days to complete the review of any complete application for a project with 25 or fewer homes and 60 days to complete the review for developments with more than 25 homes.