Letter from the President
Dear Friends and Supporters,
Earlier this year, Californians were shocked to learn that 3,000 students could be denied admission this fall to one of the state’s premier institutions of higher learning – UC Berkeley.
They were even more upset to learn that the reason why was a California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA, lawsuit filed by a Berkeley neighbor opposing a campus expansion plan, which forced the Legislature to pass a quick fix to ensure these students could enroll at Cal this fall.
In this edition of Impact, learn about a major new research project just released by PRI that shows how “The CEQA Gauntlet” not only drives up housing construction costs, but also acts as a roadblock for new schools, campus housing, homeless shelters, new roads, and clean energy projects.
Check out the project’s centerpiece – a flowchart visualizing the bureaucratic rules and legal hurdles anyone who wishes to build must navigate to get their project approved. CEQA is just one of many factors contributing to the rising cost of living and declining quality of life in our major cities. Learn about PRI’s new Free Cities Center, headed up by its director Steven Greenhut. It aims to address the West Coast’s many current and future urban problems based on the principles of freedom, not government control.
One key priority of the Free Cities Center will be to make West Coast cities livable again, which is far from the case today in most major cities. In this issue: Learn how government energy mandates “zap” Californians with higher electricity bills and how reforming or repealing these costly laws could save the average household $517 per year.
Read how Californians are paying on average more than $6 per gallon for gasoline thanks in part to expensive government mandates, taxes, and fees. After the recent tragic nightclub shooting in Downtown Sacramento, learn how government policy mistakes are making our cities much less safe.
Your generous support of PRI makes it possible for our scholars to undertake very important work promoting market-based reforms and innovative ideas to improve the quality of life of all Americans.