Time limits for completing and certifying environmental impact reports and negative declarations
(a) (1) For projects described in subdivision (c) of Section 21065, each local agency shall establish, by ordinance or resolution, time limits that do not exceed the following:
(A) One year for completing and certifying environmental impact reports.
(B) One hundred eighty days for completing and adopting negative declarations.
(2) The time limits specified in paragraph (1) shall apply only to those circumstances in which the local agency is the lead agency for a project. These ordinances or resolutions may establish different time limits for different types or classes of projects and different types of environmental impact reports, but all limits shall be measured from the date on which an application requesting approval of the project is received and accepted as complete by the local agency.
(3) No application for a project may be deemed incomplete for lack of a waiver of time periods prescribed by local ordinance or resolution.
(4) The ordinances or resolutions required by this section may provide for a reasonable extension of the time period in the event that compelling circumstances justify additional time and the project applicant consents thereto.
(b) If a draft environmental impact report, environmental impact report, or focused environmental impact report is prepared under a contract to a local agency, the contract shall be executed within 45 days from the date on which the local agency sends a notice of preparation pursuant to Section 21080.4. The local agency may take longer to execute the contract if the project applicant and the local agency mutually agree to an extension of the time limit provided by this subdivision.
(Amended by Stats. 1996, Ch. 808, Sec. 3.)