At the Federal and State levels, the National Environmental Policy Act and the California Environmental Quality Act, respectively, require certain procedures before a government takes actions that significantly affect environmental quality. This Article states the case for an environmentally sensitive package involving the National Environmental Policy Act to the California Environmental Quality Act, through Assembly Bill 1301 and the Coastal Zone Initiative, with an eye toward Just v. Marinette County, to permit a review of land use decisions and provide a clear understanding of the limits of environmental protection in California. Because the resulting package involves the National Environmental Policy Act and the California Environmental Quality Act, this Article discusses the policy behind the acts and the statutory language, in addition to the responsibility for preparing and the contents of Environmental Impact Reports. Assembly Bill 1301 and the Coastal Zone Initiative play an intermediary role in this package. Assembly Bill 1301 regulates subdivisions, including any expansion and judicial review. The Coastal Zone Initiative controls the Coastal Zone permit process. This Article advocates the California Environmental Quality Act and the Coastal Zone Initiative as a basis for judicial review of contested Coastal Zone permits. Finally, although the package is fragile, this article concludes that the costs of rejecting such a package are too high.
John M. Winters,
Environmentally Sensitive Land Use Regulation in California,
San Diego L. Rev.
Available at: https://digital.sandiego.edu/sdlr/vol10/iss4/2