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Client Alerts

2011

Economic Development, Real Estate and Housing

  • Court Upholds Redevelopment Dissolution Bill, Strikes Voluntary Payment BillDecember 29, 2011The California Supreme Court today issued an opinion in the California Redevelopment Association v. Matosantos case, upholding Assembly Bill x1 26 (the "Redevelopment Dissolution" bill) and invalidating Assembly Bill x1 27 (the "Voluntary Payment" bill). The Court provided a four month extension for all deadlines contained in AB x1 26 that arise prior to May 1, 2012. As a result, ... read more
  • California Supreme Court Revises Stay of Redevelopment Dissolution and “Opt-In” LegislationAugust 18, 2011California Redevelopment Association, et al. v. Ana Matosantos, et al. The Supreme Court has revised its August 11 partial Stay of AB x1 26 and x1 27 by clarifying that the entirety of  Part 1.8 (Health and Safety Code Sections 34161 through 34169.5) is excluded from the stay and remains in effect.  This means that Health and Safety Code Section 34167.5, which permits the Controller to ... read more
  • Next Steps for Redevelopment Agencies After Passage of Dissolution and “Pay to Play” Assembly BillsJuly 1, 2011On Tuesday, the Legislature approved the latest budget proposal (SB 87) and sent the previously passed trailer bills, AB 1X 26 and 27, to the Governor for signature. The California Redevelopment Association and the League of California Cities will be filing legal actions in efforts to invalidate the legislation and obtain a stay on implementation.  If the legislation is upheld, redevelopment ... read more
  • Proposed Legislation to Address Governor’s Proposal to Disestablish Redevelopment AgenciesFebruary 24, 2011Late in the afternoon on Wednesday, February 23rd, the State Department of Finance released language for a proposed budget trailer bill that addresses the Governor’s proposal to disestablish redevelopment agencies.   The 26-page bill has not yet been formally introduced, but may be introduced and considered by the Budget Conference Committee within the next few days.  It is likely that the ... read more

Land Use

Labor and Employment

Environmental Law

  • CARB Adopts Final GHG Cap-and-Trade ProgramOctober 26, 2011After surviving a highly publicized ballot box challenge and lawsuit, the California Air Resources Board (“CARB”) unanimously adopted a final greenhouse gas (“GHG”) cap-and-trade program regulation.  The cap-and-trade program is considered to be the cornerstone of CARB’s implementation of California’s landmark Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, Assembly Bill 32 (“AB 32”).  ... read more

CEQA and NEPA

  • Significant CEQA Streamlining Reform Bills EnactedOctober 24, 2011Three important reform bills designed to streamline California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) processing and review for certain classes of projects have been enacted and will take effect January 1, 2012.  SB 226 creates a new exemption for urban infill and renewable energy projects.  It also makes a variety of amendments to both CEQA and SB 375, the landmark 2008 legislation designed to ... read more
  • Court Rejects CEQA Challenge to GHG and Water Analysis in Addendum to 1994 EIRJune 23, 2011In Citizens for Responsible Equitable Environmental Development (CREED) v. City of San Diego, the Court upheld the use of an Addendum to a 1994 environmental impact report (EIR) to approve a revised Project.  The Court rejected two challenges: (1) that the Addendum failed to include an analysis of the impacts of greenhouse gases which was not addressed in the 1994 EIR; and (2) that the City ... read more
  • City Approval Of Preliminary Terms for New Football Stadium Was Not A Project Approval And Did Not Violate CEQAMay 26, 2011In Cedar Fair, L.P. v. City of Santa Clara, the latest case interpreting Save Tara, the Sixth District Court of Appeal found that the City of Santa Clara did not violate CEQA when it approved preliminary terms for a new football stadium. The City had adopted a 39-page Stadium Term Sheet which detailed proposed construction, financing and other provisions for development of a stadium for ... read more

Public Finance

  • Governor Signs AB 506 (Wieckowski) Affecting Chapter 9 Bankruptcy FilingsOctober 14, 2011On October 9, 2011, Governor Brown signed legislation that creates new requirements for local government entities considering Chapter 9 bankruptcy filings. The final bill allows a local government entity to file a bankruptcy petition so long as it has either declared a fiscal emergency or engaged in a specified mediation process with its major creditors. This legislation was promoted by public ... read more

Trial and Litigation

Public Contracts

  • Project Thresholds Change Under Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting ActSeptember 27, 2011Public entities that utilize the UPCCAA should take note that the monetary thresholds for bidding on public projects has changed as follows: (a) Public projects of thirty thousand dollars ($30,000) or less may be performed by the employees of a public agency by force account, by negotiated contract, or by purchase order. (b) Public projects of one hundred seventy-five thousand dollars ... read more
  • Local Agencies Now Required to Provide Electronic Copies of Project Documents to Contractor Plan RoomsFebruary 16, 2011The California State legislature recently passed AB 2036, codified as Section 20103.7 of the Public Contract Code, which provides that "[a] local agency taking bids for the construction of a public work project or improvement, upon request from a contractor plan room service, must provide an electronic copy of a project's contract documents at no charge to the contractor plan room."  Section ... read more

Municipal and Special District Law

  • Ninth Circuit Finds Anti-Solicitation Ordinance Aimed at Day Laborers Violates First AmendmentSeptember 26, 2011The Ninth Circuit invalidated a City of Redondo Beach ordinance that prohibits solicitation between day laborers and occupants of motor vehicles on streets and highways. In Comite De Jornaleros De Redondo Beach v. City of Redondo Beach, Ninth Circuit Case No. 06-55750, No. 06-56869, the Ninth Circuit en banc opinion reversed the prior panel decision that held the Redondo Beach ordinance ... read more
  • Non-elected members of public agency boards beware!February 1, 2011Under the broad language of proposed rules of the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”), intended to implement provisions of Section 975 (“Section 975”) of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (the “Dodd-Frank Act”), non-elected members of the governing board of a municipal entity may fall under the definition of “municipal advisor” and thereby ... read more
  • Executive Summary: Bills to WatchJune 8, 2011Various labor-related bills are currently making their way through the California Legislature.  This executive summary provides a brief description of these bills and how each could potentially effect cities, counties and special districts around California. Assembly Bill 646                  Under the authority granted to local governments by the MMBA, many cities, counties and ... read more

Oil, Gas and Energy Law

  • The Williamson Act: Agricultural Land Conservation and Solar DevelopmentMarch 23, 2011 On March 11, the California Department of Conservation (“Department”) issued an opinion entitled “Considerations in Citing Solar Facilities on Land Enrolled in the Williamson Act” (“Opinion”). This provides suggestions to cities and counties for permitting solar development on agricultural land under contract in the California Land Conservation Act (“Williamson Act”). The ... read more