SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Despite early momentum to change California's landmark environmental-protection law, the Legislature sent Gov. Jerry Brown a bill that includes just limited changes.
That legislation instead acts primarily as a vehicle for aiding construction of a new NBA arena in Sacramento. It falls far short of the fundamental reforms sought by interests representing businesses, local governments and housing advocates.
A coalition formed by those interests said it was disappointed with the outcome and will seek further reforms in the future. Yet Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg defended the final bill's provisions and said they represented substantial changes.
Those changes include provisions to prevent legal challenges to urban projects based on aesthetics or parking requirements, as well as a requirement that state officials revise how traffic effects are assessed.
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