Thousands of Californians whose homes were foreclosed on or sold at a loss would get tax relief under a measure approved Thursday by the state Legislature. The bill would waive state taxes on mortgage debt that has been forgiven in a foreclosure or short sale. It is expected to affect about 34,000 taxpayers. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger said he would sign the measure, which would also provide about $60m in tax credits to green-energy companies, when it reached his desk. Californians can already claim the tax breaks on federal returns. Lawmakers passed the measure in time for people to take advantage of it by the April 15 deadline for filing tax returns. “The mortgage-debt tax relief provision in this bill will provide financial shelter for tens of thousands of Californians who have lost their hopes and dreams in the housing market crash, and it’s about time we gave these folks a helping hand,” said state Sen. Ron Calderon (D-Montebello).

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