July 12, 2012
By George Deukmejian, Pete Wilson & Gray Davis
“Californians are unique – independent, optimistic, innovative, entrepreneurial and self-confident. These characteristics, evident during the Gold Rush, are just as common today in communities up and down California, from the Silicon Valley, to Los Angeles, to San Diego. This entrepreneurial spirit has fueled hundreds of thousands of small businesses throughout our state and created millions of jobs. It’s what makes California the Golden State and why we are the eighth largest economy in the world.
Likewise, California is often referred to as more of a “state of mind” than a state. A place where great weather, geography and natural beauty combine to provide a relaxed and fulfilling lifestyle. Because of this, Californians also share a strong environmental consciousness – one that has helped to make our state the greenest in the country and a world leader in environmental policy. This too is part of who we are.
From these two parts of our collective personality comes a unique challenge – keeping California both “green” and “golden.” Doing this requires reason and understanding that both goals are coequal priorities for Californians. This certainly means protecting our environment. However, it also means a willingness to relentlessly advance smart reforms of environmental laws, business regulations, or policies that unnecessarily disrupt the reasonable balance between being “green” and “golden.”
As three former California governors with firsthand experience managing this dynamic, we believe that one of our state’s oldest environmental laws, the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), is in need of modernization.”
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