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What's to Blame for California’s Housing Crisis?
The root causes of California’s housing crisis are obvious, but politics prevents fixes.
"You can't change CEQA. The unions won't let you because they use it as a hammer to get project labor agreements." – Former Governor Jerry Brown
People, and families in particular, are fleeing California in droves. Last year, the population shrank for the second year in a row, in large part because of the lack of new housing and exorbitant prices of the dwindling existing stock. Politicians love to talk about “affordable housing,” but the plans to allow more development go out the window as soon as their talking points are pitted against the agendas of powerful lobbying groups. The infamous NIMBY’s of California have found allies in unions, who have together weaponized an environmental “super-statute” that effectively blocks any new construction if it can be shown to increase carbon emissions.
Christian Britschgi is an associate editor at Reason Magazine who has written extensively about housing policy. His work shines a light on the root causes of the housing crisis, and why the patchwork of solutions coming from California’s legislative houses has failed to significantly ameliorate the problem.
Christian will join the show of ideas to explain how the California Environmental Quality Act makes the approval of new housing nearly impossible.
What will it take to break through the thicket of regulations when the most powerful lobbies have an interest in keeping them in place?
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California's housing crisis hasn't spared the state's college students, 9.30.2022, Christian Britschgi
Environmental lawsuits tried to block 50,000 homes from being built in California in one year, 8.26.2022, by Christian Britschgi