BY Matthew Kredell : news.ucs – excerpt
The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the focus of much discussion about development since its enactment in 1970, was front and center at a recent debate at the Galen Center.
The California Central-USC Villaraigosa Initiative at the USC Price School of Public Policy hosted the event, which convened leading practitioners in environmental law and urban development on Dec. 10.
The CEQA was adopted in the spirit of environmental protection and is a big part of why California is known for its environmental leadership. However, critics argue that the CEQA may be abused to hinder much-needed infill and transit development.
“The governor continues to look at this issue, and so does the legislature,” former Los Angeles MayorAntonio Villaraigosa said in his introduction. “We wanted to bring together a group of experts from across the spectrum who can help us have an intelligent conversation about it.”
Paula Daniels, executive director of California Central, provided the context that the CEQA requires that state and local agencies assess and publicly disclose environmental impacts of proposed projects, then minimize or mitigate those impacts to the greatest extent possible. It creates public accountability and a transparent process… (more)