Previous efforts have repeatedly failed to clear the Legislature. Leonard said the national mortgage settlement and Harris' involvement are likely to make the difference this year.
Sen. Noreen Evans, D-Santa Rosa, who co-chaired the conference committee that negotiated the bill, said Brown's administration worked with Democrats on the legislation and has given every indication he would sign it into law. However, Brown's office said he would not comment on pending legislation.
The law would not take effect until Jan. 1, though Evans and Harris said they expect lenders would begin following the new rules immediately even if the penalties don't yet apply.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.