California Governor Brown Signs CEQA Reform Bills

Today California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law legislation amending the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) to facilitate construction of both a major new sports stadium in downtown Los Angeles and large “environmental leadership development projects” involving financial commitments of at least $10 million and that incorporate substantial urban infill or renewable energy components.

This controversial legislation, enacted in the waning hours of the California Legislature’s just-concluded session, constitutes two-thirds of a three-bill CEQA “reform package” that has previously been profiled by Legal Planet colleagues Eric Biber, Ethan Elkind and myself.

Governor Brown signed into law the so-called “stadium bill” (SB 292) and the more wide-ranging “Environmental Leadership Development Project” bill (SB 900) in a formal ceremony held today on the proposed site of the new sports stadium in downtown L.A.

Still sitting on the Governor’s desk is SB 226, the final piece of the CEQA reform package, and the bill that has the broadest potential impact on California developers, the state’s economy and environmental interests. SB 226 would “streamline” the CEQA process to facilitate development of an array of urban infill development and renewable energy projects. My guess? Governor Brown will sign that bill as well, by the end of next week.

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Reader Comments

2 Replies to “California Governor Brown Signs CEQA Reform Bills”

  1. The press release issued after the bill signing (linked above in Rick’s blog entry), predicts that the new L.A. stadium would bring $40 million in new revenues into the state each year. Meanwhile, various newspapers predict that the major tenant for the new stadium would be either the San Diego Chargers, or the Oakland Raiders. If the stadium merely serves to move commerce from one California city to another, it is hard to figure how it will bring much new revenue into the state.

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Richard Frank

Richard Frank is Professor of Environmental Practice and Director of the U. C. Davis School of Law’s California Environmental Law & Policy Center. From 2006-2010, …

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