Throughout the recent recession and slow recovery, stalled projects that had obtained state or local land use approvals (special permits, orders of conditions, etc.) have been at risk of having those approvals expire. The 2010 Permit Extension Act (Section 173 of Chapter 240 of the Acts of 2010) added an additional two years to the expiration period for most approvals in effect between August 15, 2008, and August 15, 2010.
For example, a special permit issued on November 2, 2009, would have expired if the applicant failed to start work by November 2, 2011. The Permit Extension Act pushes that deadline to November 2, 2013.
The “Jobs Bill” introduced in the State House this week (House Bill 4093) would extend the tolling period and the expiration period of the Permit Extension Act. Under the proposal, state and local land use approvals in effect between August 15, 2008, and August 15, 2012, would have an additional four-year expiration period. Therefore, the same special permit that would have expired on November 2, 2011, would remain in effect until November 2, 2015.
This proposed extension of the Permit Extension Act is likely to generate considerable buzz in local chambers of commerce and town halls. While generally embraced by the development community, the act has received mixed reviews from municipal officials.
House Bill 4093 also includes dozens of other economic development initiatives. I will post updates as the bill works its way through the legislative process.