Liz Klebaner Comments on Impact of AB 1307
Liz Klebaner was quoted in the Law360 article “Newsom Updates Code To Ease Path For Berkeley Housing” (subscription required). The article provides an overview of AB 1307, signed into law by California Gov. Gavin Newsom in September of 2023. AB 1307 limits an appellate panel’s ruling that the University of California, Berkeley, failed to adequately analyze noise impacts in part of its California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) review of a proposed student housing project. AB 1307 clarifies that the effects of noise generated by occupants of residential projects and their guests on human beings is not a significant effect on the environment under CEQA.
The article points out after the appellate panel ruling against Berkeley in February of 2023, Governor Newsom and many in the legal field were concerned that requiring CEQA review to include an analysis of social gatherings caused by project occupants is “problematic” and changes the spirit of the law. Addressing the appellate ruling Liz said, “the ruling blurred the lines between the environmental law’s scope and nuisance ordinances.” She added, “The new law will help ‘limit the range’ of potential CEQA challenges to residential projects…[but that] commercial or ‘institutional’ developments could still face challenges moving forward.”