CALIFORNIA COMMUNITY BANKS are hoping that a low-paperwork state program will help them lend to more small businesses.

The lack of credit to small businesses took on a special urgency in California in the last year, as the state's economy continued to emerge from the recession at a slower pace than the rest of the country. The California Bankers Association and other business groups in the state pushed for a program that would give small businesses easier access to capital and, hopefully, create jobs in the process.

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