KCBS_740SAN JOSE (KCBS) — San Jose is adding tiny houses to its patchwork of solutions to homelessness.

The city is the first in the state to get permission for this experiment.

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Assemblywoman Nora Campos worked with San Jose housing officials to write what Governor Brown has just signed into law – a five- year waiver of the building codes and other safety rules that have stood in the way of erecting tiny house developments for homeless people.

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Ray Bramson with the San Jose housing department says in those five years, the city will build some 500 permanent, supportive housing units. The tiny houses will be for the people waiting to live in those apartments. Where they will go, what they will look like, and how much they will cost are still to be determined.

About 4,000 people are homeless in San Jose.

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Bramson acknowledges only a fraction will benefit from the tiny house program but says it’s one more tool in the toolkit.