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Technology Aiding California Agencies Facing Increased Housing Legislation

By Avolve Software | April 25, 2024

2022 and 2023 have seen a variety of amendments to housing laws as additional legislative requirements have been placed on towns, cities, counties, and planning districts across California. These two years have seen the State introducing legislation to improve efficiencies in planning and zoning laws, especially for affordable housing developments. Yet, how do California agencies cope with the additional requirements with teams already stretched? 

Agencies face increased pressure to be more transparent in their decision-making, providing extensive information and examples of approved developments to applicants. Other stipulations require agencies to make approval decisions within set timeframes and accept permit applications and documentation via electronic mail. 

New laws increasing resource pressure. 

As with any new law, it often results in an increase in daily tasks. Many agencies are subsequently evaluating their permit approval processes to identify areas for efficiency improvement, in the hope to alleviate some of the additional pressure put on already resource-stretched departments. 

The new legislative requirements in California are taking steps towards trying to streamline the process and information provided to applicants, as well as make permit approval easier and clearer for very low, low, or moderate-income households developments. 

This is just part of extensive legal changes that have hit housing departments over these two years, it is no wonder many agencies who have not yet looked to a technology solution are concerned about their staff and meeting the timeframes required. Technology can help to lighten the pain points in adhering to new rules. 

Technology offers compliance ease. 

Let me ask a couple of questions – do you use ePlan review software? Not PDF markup, but a true electronic plan review? And is it connected to your permitting system? 

Let’s address the first concern – ePlan review on paper is never going to be efficient. Version-control issues, lack of collaboration, cumbersome processes, lost papers even. Those on PDF tools are at least onscreen, but uploading, downloading plan sets is far from ideal and clunky at best. 

For California agencies to realize the necessary efficiencies to ease the pressure of compliance, an ePlan review software that is integrated into the land use management platform is critical: Streamlined ePlan review where you can collaborate onscreen, improve review status visibility across departments, as well as markup, view, compare, and send correction comments back to applicants all in one place. 

ePlan review enables team efficiency, aiding California jurisdictions to meet housing requirements while supporting staff with easy-to-use applications that reduces the compliance pressure. Changes in legislation are inevitable and outside of our control, however being prepared, and having solutions to support your team and ultimately your citizens, is the variable within your control and provides significant advantages. 

Take a look at Avolve’s solutions to see how they can support your plan review processes. 

Interested in creating efficiency for your plan review processes?

Avolve Software's suite of plan review and management solutions enable your jurisdiction to reduce time to permit.

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Avolve Software is the global leader in ePlan Review and Management for Government towns, cities, counties, municipalities, and states.

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