Save Our Capitol! Argues $1.2B+ Capitol Annex Project Fails to Adequately Analyze and Mitigate Project Impacts

(Sacramento, CA) – Save Our Capitol! today issued the following statement ahead of today’s hearing before the California Third District Court of Appeal in the matter of Save Our Capitol! vs. California Department of General Services (DGS) and Joint Committee on Rules of the California State Senate and Assembly (JRC):

“No one is questioning the critical need to improve and modernize the historic Capitol Annex; however, we maintain that the Capitol Annex Project’s Environmental Impact Report (EIR) fails to comply with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) because it does not adequately analyze and mitigate the Project’s impacts on cultural resources, biological resources, aesthetics, traffic, and utilities and service systems.

“It is undisputed that the State Capitol Complex—which consists of the restored Historic Capitol, the Capitol Annex, Capitol Park, and the Insectary—is considered a CEQA historic resource because it is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. It is also undisputed that the Project’s impacts on historic resources will be significant, as DGS found such impacts to be ‘significant and unavoidable.’

“Notwithstanding the EIR’s conclusion that impacts to historic resources are significant, DGS and JRC were still required to analyze and disclose the extent of those impacts. They did not.

“As mentioned in our appeal, the Capitol Annex Project would demolish the historic Capitol Annex, one of the most important historic buildings in California, and would irreversibly damage the Capitol’s historic West Lawn. We ask the Court to enforce CEQA’s statutory requirements—which mandate the long-term protection of the State of California’s built and natural environment to the extent feasible—and to thereby afford the people of California the protections to which their unique and treasured historic resources are entitled.”

A hearing on the case before the Third Appellate District is scheduled for November 14,2022.