Are environmental laws making the housing affordability crisis worse?
A panel at the "California Housing: The Cost of Not Housing" summit in downtown Los Angeles spoke on how the California Environmental Quality Act has severely undermined the construction of homes in California. Attorney Jennifer Hernandez, a member of the panel, noted how many residents don't want new developments, especially high-density housing projects, in their neighborhoods, relying on CEQA petitions to stop those projects.
“This is not about protecting land, it’s about fights within communities,” Ms. Hernandez said. “Anyone can sue anonymously and you have very high odds of winning if you are a CEQA petitioner. The act of filing a lawsuit for $1,200 can stop a project for a full market cycle. CEQA litigation is not about the environment ... it’s a lawyer gotcha’ game.”