FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 3, 2013
CONTACT: Kathy Fairbanks, 916-443-0872, firstname.lastname@example.org
SACRAMENTO – A newly-released economic analysis by John Husing, Ph.D., principal of the economic consulting firm Economics & Politics, Inc. in Redlands, CA, found that thousands of prevailing wage union jobs are put at risk every year by meritless CEQA litigation. Husing evaluated a cross-section of recent CEQA litigation and the delays and increased costs caused by the litigation.
“Very often the discussion about CEQA abuse is centered around impacts to businesses, but more important is the direct impact these abuses have on job creation and employees,” said Husing. “Our analysis found that, by and large, for otherwise environmentally sound projects, prevailing wage union construction jobs are those most heavily impacted by CEQA litigation.”
The Economics & Politics study analyzed seven projects from all over the state. They were chosen because they are typical of the types of projects being impacted by CEQA litigation. Projects analyzed ranged from major commuter rail efforts to massive affordable housing/transit oriented developments to smaller community projects.
For just these seven projects, the study found that on an annual basis:
- 3,245 prevailing wage jobs were delayed or eliminated due to CEQA litigation,
- $326.1 million in annual wages and benefits for union workers were put at risk.
“These numbers are significant,” continued Husing. “This analysis represents only a small fraction of the projects delayed every year by CEQA litigation. There are literally hundreds of CEQA lawsuits filed each and every year. It can be concluded then, that thousands of prevailing wage union jobs are lost or delayed by CEQA every year, as well as billions in lost wages and benefits for union workers.”
Ironically, the loudest voices fighting even moderate CEQA reforms are the very same construction trades unions whose members are being hurt most by CEQA abuses through lost or delayed jobs and lost or delayed wages and benefits. Read the full study here.
About Economic & Politics, Inc.
Dr. John Husing is a regional economist trained at Claremont Graduate University who has studied California’s economy for 49 years. Of late, the focus of his work has been on the clash between regulatory policy in California that is shutting off the growth of jobs in fields like construction, manufacturing and logistics needed by marginally educated workers to access the middle class. He sees this as contributing to the dramatic increase in the number and share of the state’s people living in poverty with all of the public health and social implications that this entails. There is a social justice component to this difficulty in that the problem is falling disproportionately on the state’s Hispanic population.