HELENA, Mont. – Governor Greg Gianforte yesterday signed Senate Bill 161 into law to make housing more affordable by cutting red tape and increasing supply.
“For too long, burdensome regulations have limited the housing supply, driven up prices, and made buying a home increasingly out of reach for many hardworking Montanans,” Gov. Gianforte said. “This new law cuts red tape to make it more affordable for Montanans to buy a home.”
Sponsored by Sen. John Esp (R-Big Timber), the new law creates an expedited review process for subdivisions and removes unpredictable, costly, and time-consuming procedural hurdles. The streamlined review process is targeted and maintains protections of public health, welfare, environment, and safety. The new law applies within cities and county water and sewer districts that comply with planning and zoning and have adequate infrastructure.
“This bill is an example of a good idea that worked its way to the top through the collaboration of a wide range of interested parties between legislative sessions,” Sen. Esp said. “This new law will help address the housing shortage in Montana, and I’m glad that the legislature and governor have helped make this good idea law.”
Before this new law, Montana required duplicative reviews and procedural hurdles for areas that have already been through community planning and zoning processes.