A federal study says efforts to protect the endangered arroyo toad in Southern California could cost $789 million over 25 years.
A U.S. Fish and Wildlife analysis issued last month looked at a revised proposal to protect more than 112,000 acres of critical habitat for the toad in Santa Barbara, Ventura, Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange, and San Diego counties.
The analysis says proposed restrictions would impact the economy by making it costlier to develop land and delaying construction.
Fish and Wildlife has twice revised the amount of land that it proposes should be protected as habitat for the 2-inch toad after lawsuits by the building industry and a preservation group.
Comments on the proposal can be submitted to the agency by July 28.
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.