Builders in the Sacramento region pulled more housing permits in 2013 than during any of the previous four years -- but it's no housing boom, new census figures show.
Sacramento governments issued about 4,200 housing permits last year, up from 3,400 in 2012. The last time so many building permits were issued in the four-county area was in 2008, just after the start of the recession.
The construction industry has historically been one of the largest employers in the Sacramento region. Average construction employment rose 11 percent, going from 38,400 in 2012 to 42,900 in 2013, state figures show.
The number of building permits issued last year pales in comparison to permits issued a decade ago. At the height of the housing boom, Sacramento builders pulled more than 20,000 building permits annually.