A bill to authorize $5 billion of lease-revenue bonds for courthouses cleared its first committee hearing Tuesday.

The California Senate Public Safety Committee voted 4 to 1 to pass the bill out, but referred it to the Senate’s Judiciary Committee. A hearing there is scheduled for Tuesday.

The bill, sponsored by Senate President pro tempore Don Perata, D-Oakland, would authorize the bonds to finance about 50 projects in courthouses around the state.

All three Democrats on the committee voted for the bill, while the two Republicans split, with the “no” vote coming from Dave Cogdill, the Senate Republican leader.

For the bill to pass the full Senate, at least some bipartisan support will be needed, as lease-revenue bonds must be approved by a two-thirds vote in each house.

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