Most of what I heard on the webinar from this link I basically already knew but this made my jaw drop:
CHRIS GANNON: “We’re encouraging maps to be made by jurisdictions that essentially paint the areas that are below the significant thresholds, say green [which must be from the CalEnviroScreen 3.0 map] and make these go zones for development. These areas we presume are less than significant for transportation…”
At 38:30 on the this link: https://www.sacog.org/post/updates-ceqa-guidelines-sb-743
A middle class neighborhood can never be other than green because the criteria is Pollution Burdens TIMES Population Characteristics. It’s set up so that Population Characteristics will always be zero in a middle class neighborhood (or extremely low) and since it’s multiplied and not added, a middle class neighborhood will never score out of the green zone.
Sacramento wants to push these high density developments in middle class neighborhoods. Local control is virtually gone with SB 35, other housing bills already passed, and more proposed.
In the past, a CEQA (environmental) review was required for any new Land Use Plan or development. Sacramento is putting in new guidelines to push high density forward. They have also allocated funds from cap and trade to pay for these developments. Many, many other policies too.
New CEQA (environmental) guidelines were put out a couple of months ago. Loss of Service (LOS) will no longer be used as the criteria for the transportation study and will be replaced by Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT). Cities may start using the new guidelines immediately upon the state’s adoption which will be very soon, perhaps March or April of 2018; total statewide compliance must be by 1/1/2020. The transportation impact is deemed to be less than significant if the development is located near transit, or near planned transit, as it is presumed to lower VMT. If it’s within 1/2 mile of transit the guidelines recommend not to even do a transportation study. There are many planned high quality transit corridors in the SCAG Report (there’s also a story on LBReport about LB Transit adding bus service http://www.lbreport.com/news/jan18/busplan.htm) and according to the Technical Advisory, planned transit not even in place yet also means CEQA can be streamlined, meaning not done. It is pre-determined that housing developments located close to transit will reduce VMT.
We are being attacked from every direction!