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Ballot Measure Aims To Reduce CEQA Lawsuits And Boost Housing

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Sacramento, CA — The group Californians for Homeownership Affordability, led by media commentator and author Steve Hilton, is urging support of a proposed CEQA reform initiative that could go before voters later this year.

The “California Homeownership Affordability Act” would limit who can file lawsuits to stop housing projects under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). The group argues that neighbors and businesses are using provisions in CEQA to stop housing developments they don’t like by filing lawsuits to delay projects. The proposed change would put these types of lawsuits only in the hands of district attorneys and the state attorney general.

In addition, it would put a limit on impact fees that can be charged to developers, capping out at 3% of the overall cost of construction and labor of a home.

Hilton argues, “Abusive CEQA lawsuits benefit special interests and wealthy attorneys while making homes more expensive. They also damage our environment by making it more difficult to build desperately needed housing and infrastructure. By putting an end to abusive special interest lawsuits that block housing we’ll be able to address one of the most significant drivers of home prices in California and begin to turn the page on the state’s man-made housing crisis.”

Hilton notes that in 2020, CEQA lawsuits challenged the construction of about 48,000 approved homes, equaling about half of the state’s annual housing production.

The group has launched the website CalHomesNow.com with more information. Hilton was the keynote speaker at the annual Reagan dinner held last August at the Mother Lode Fairgrounds in Sonora.

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