Los Angeles Business Journal

Stadium Bill Heads to Governor's Desk

By Howard Fine Friday, September 9, 2011

The state Senate on Friday passed legislation granting Anschutz Entertainment Group the right to expedite legal challenges to a proposed football stadium in downtown Los Angeles.

It now heads to Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk.

The bill, which passed on a 32-7 vote, was authored by two Democratic lawmakers from Los Angeles County, Assembly Speaker John Perez and Sen. Alex Padilla. It allows AEG to fast-track any legal challenges raised by stadium opponents under the California Environmental Quality Act. It also requires AEG to take additional steps to reduce the environmental and traffic impacts of the stadium on the surrounding neighborhood.

Environmentalists initially opposed the bill when it was unveiled last week, saying the mitigation measures were insufficient and that the legislation set a precedent for exemptions to CEQA. Two major environmental groups, the Natural Resources Defense Council and the California League of Conservation Voters, then dropped their opposition and the bill passed the Assembly on Wednesday.