Arthur F. Coon

Arthur F. Coon

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Fourth District Holds Non-Expert Opinion Fails To Support “Fair Argument” Under CEQA That Approval of Non-Regional Retail Store In...

In an opinion filed June 15, and ordered partially published on July 13, 2016, the Fourth District Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s judgment requiring the County of San Bernardino to prepare an EIR instead of a...more

7/15/2016 - CEQA Conditional Use Permit Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Mitigated Negative Declaration

CEQA Remedies Statute Does Not Authorize Appellate Court To Issue Writ And Supervise Compliance On Direct Appeal, Holds Second...

In the published part of a partially published opinion filed July 11, 2016, the Second Appellate District Court of Appeal held that Public Resources Code § 21168.9 does not authorize an appellate court to issue and supervise...more

7/14/2016 - CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Greenhouse Gas Emissions Land Developers State Department of Fish and Wildlife

AEP Launches New CEQA Portal Website As Compliance Resource

The Association of Environmental Professionals (AEP) has developed a new CEQA reference website designed to provide detailed, authoritative, and easy to understand information on CEQA and CEQA compliance. While the site went...more

7/11/2016 - CEQA Websites

Supreme Court CEQA Subsequent Review Case Briefing Completed And Case Submitted (Apparently)

As a brief follow up to my earlier posts of April 26, May 4, and May 12, 2016, it appears that supplemental and amicus briefing has ended and that the matter has now been submitted for decision in the important Supreme Court...more

7/11/2016 - Amicus Briefs CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR)

Deficient CEQA Guidelines Appendix F Energy Impacts Analysis Causes First District To Pull The Plug On Ukiah Costco Project EIR

In a partially published opinion filed June 21, 2016, the Court of Appeal for the First Appellate District reversed in part the Mendocino County Superior Court’s judgment denying a writ petition challenging the City of...more

6/24/2016 - CEQA Costco Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Fourth District Holds Wal-Mart Victorville Project EIR Violates CEQA; Project Approval Findings Violate Map Act; And Project Is...

In a decision filed May 25, and belatedly ordered published June 15, 2016, the Fourth District Court of Appeal affirmed and reversed in part a judgment of the San Bernardino County Superior Court. It affirmed the judgment to...more

6/20/2016 - CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Greenhouse Gas Emissions Wal-Mart

June 2016 CEQA Update: Legislative Developments

As summer rapidly approaches, and we continue to experience a (from my perspective welcome) “mini-drought” of published CEQA cases, I’ll briefly report on some recent legislative developments of possible...more

6/16/2016 - Affordable Housing CEQA Multi-Family Development

Home(s) In The “Range”: Fourth District Overturns CEQA Exemption For City of Palm Springs’ General Plan Amendment Removing...

In a brief – and somewhat odd – opinion filed April 22, and belatedly ordered partially published on May 20, 2016, the Fourth District Court of Appeal reversed a trial court judgment denying a petition for writ of mandate...more

5/25/2016 - CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Exemptions General Plan

Fourth District Upholds EIR For Cadiz Mojave Desert Groundwater Pumping Project Against Various CEQA Challenges

In the second of two published opinions filed May 10, 2016, the Fourth District Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s judgment upholding the lead agency designation and EIR for a controversial project proposing to pump...more

5/18/2016 - CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Groundwater Public Private Partnerships (P3s)

The Plot Thickens: California Supreme Court Vacates Submission Of Just-Argued CEQA Subsequent Review Case, Orders Supplemental...

In orders issued May 11, 2016, one week after the May 4 oral argument and submission of the cause for decision, the California Supreme Court vacated the submission and ordered supplemental briefing in Friends of the Collage...more

5/13/2016 - Appeals CEQA Department of Natural Resources Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Standard of Review

Fourth District Rejects CEQA Challenges To Large Mojave Desert Groundwater Pumping Project In Separate Published Opinions

In two opinions filed May 10, 2016 (one partially and the other fully published), the Fourth District Court of Appeal rejected a number of CEQA and other challenges to a project proposing to pump 50,000 acre-feet of...more

5/12/2016 - CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Exemptions Groundwater Groundwater Management Plan Memorandum of Understanding Public Private Partnerships (P3s) Standard of Review

“Hot Bench” For Advocates In Supreme Court CEQA Subsequent Review Case

The California Supreme Court held a lively oral argument session this morning (May 4, 2016), at 9:00 a.m. in its San Francisco courtroom in the case of Friends of the College of San Mateo Gardens v. San Mateo Community...more

5/5/2016 - CEQA Colleges Construction Industry Construction Project Environmental Impact Report (EIR)

Supreme Court Set To Hear Important CEQA Subsequent Review Case

On May 4, 2016, at 9 a.m. in its San Francisco courtroom, the California Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in yet another of the many significant CEQA cases it has tackled in recent years, this one presenting critically...more

4/27/2016 - Agency Deference CA Supreme Court CEQA Community Colleges Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Judicial Review Project Modification Renovations

Fourth District Holds CEQA’s Definition of “Project” Does Not Encompass Municipal Ordinance Merely Restating Existing Prohibition...

In a published opinion filed March 25, 2016, the Fourth District Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s judgment denying a writ petition that challenged a 2013 ordinance of the City of Upland which expressly prohibited...more

3/28/2016 - CEQA Environmental Policies Marijuana Related Businesses Medical Marijuana

Horse Of A Different Color: CEQA Does Not Require EIR Due To Psychological And Social Impacts From Closure Of Beloved Equestrian...

In a March 4, 2016 published opinion, the Fourth District Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s judgment requiring an EIR for a small 12-home rural subdivision project based on the “psychological and social” impacts of...more

3/14/2016 - Bay Area Air Quality Management District CEQA Construction Industry Environmental Impact Report (EIR) NEPA Real Estate Development SCOTUS

Justice Scalia’s Enduring CEQA and Land Use Law Legacy

With the February 13 passing of U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, American jurisprudence lost an intellectual giant. But Justice Scalia will not be forgotten; the legacy of his life’s work lives on. While...more

2/23/2016 - CEQA Corporate Counsel Easements Fifth Amendment Justice Scalia SCOTUS Standing Takings Young Lawyers

Motion to Amend CEQA Action Judgments to Make Additional Judgment Debtor Liable For Million Dollar Fee Award Not Barred By...

In a published opinion filed January 26, 2016, the Court of Appeal for the Fourth Appellate District (Division 2) reversed a trial court’s order denying CEQA plaintiffs’ motion to amend judgments entered four (4) years...more

2/10/2016 - CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Laches Motion to Amend Real Estate Development

OPR Releases Revised Proposed CEQA Guidelines Amendment To Implement SB 743 Traffic Analysis Mandates

The evolution of CEQA traffic impacts analysis from level of service (LOS) methodology to a vehicle miles traveled (VMT) analysis continues apace. The latest step in this revolutionary paradigm shift was the January 20, 2016...more

2/2/2016 - CEQA Greenhouse Gas Emissions Pollution Control Surface Transportation

When CEQA Violations Are An Afterthought: Fourth District Upholds Trial Court’s Independent Judgment Determination That City Of...

CEQA and land use law in California go together like a hand in a glove. Due to CEQA’s broad scope and exacting substantive and procedural requirements, it is relatively easy to plead a cause of action for CEQA violations in...more

1/26/2016 - CEQA Eminent Domain Equitable Estoppel Land Developers Vested Rights Doctrine

CDFA Program EIR Violates CEQA By Failing To Analyze Invasive Moth Control Program As Alternative To Eradication, Holds Third...

In a lengthy opinion filed December 2, 2015, and belatedly ordered published on January 4, 2016, the Third District Court of Appeal invalidated the California Department of Food and Agriculture’s (CDFA) programmatic EIR for a...more

1/11/2016 - Agricultural Land CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Pest Infestation

Supreme Engagement: CEQA’s Continuing Saga In California’s High Court

A new year often brings fresh perspective. With 2016 still in its infancy, it is natural to reflect back on what has been and also to contemplate what is yet to come. The California Supreme Court’s recent CEQA decisions, and...more

1/6/2016 - CEQA Construction Industry Greenhouse Gas Emissions ICCTA Preemption SCOTUS Sierra Club

California Supreme Court Holds “CEQA-In-Reverse” Is Not The Norm, Reverses And Remands First District’s Judgment In CBIA v. BAAQMD

In a unanimous 24-page opinion authored by newly seated Justice Cuellar and filed December 17, 2015, the California Supreme Court resolved a fundamental issue regarding CEQA’s scope, holding that – with certain specific...more

12/21/2015 - Bay Area Air Quality Management District CA Supreme Court CEQA Construction Industry Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Real Estate Development

First District Reissues Slightly Modified Opinion on Retransfer From Supreme Court Rejecting Most CEQA Challenges to Cal State...

On November 30, 2015, following a grant and retransfer from the California Supreme Court and reconsideration in light of City of San Diego v. Board of Trustees of California State University (2015) 61 Cal.4th 945, the First...more

12/15/2015 - CA Supreme Court California State Univeristy (CSU) CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Environmental Litigation Mitigation

Lost in Translation: Supreme Court Elucidates CEQA GHG Analysis, “Fully Protected” Species Take Prohibition, And Issue Exhaustion...

In a 5-2 decision filed November 30, 2015, the California Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the Court of Appeal which had upheld the EIS/EIR for the controversial Newhall Ranch development project. Center For Biological...more

12/3/2015 - CA Supreme Court CEQA Environmental Impact Report (EIR) Greenhouse Gas Emissions Incidental Take Permits Real Estate Development

Not Its First CEQA Rodeo: Third District Again Upholds Class 23 Categorical Exemption For 2011 Watsonville Rodeo Event On Remand...

In the Spring of last year, I posted an analysis of what I called the Third District Court of Appeal’s “exceptionally thorough and well-reasoned opinion” in Citizens for Environmental Responsibility v. State of California ex...more

12/1/2015 - Berkeley Hillside v City of Berkeley CA Supreme Court CEQA Exemptions Real Estate Development Remand

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