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More Legal Developments for the Construction Industry in the Southeast

Alabama - The Alabama Supreme Court reversed itself and concluded that faulty workmanship can constitute an “occurrence” under a commercial general liability insurance policy which triggers coverage for the insured. In a...more

Iowa Court of Appeals Rejects Argument to Impose Implied Warranty upon Land Developers

On April 16, 2014, land developers and sellers breathed a sigh of relief after the Iowa Court of Appeals ruled that a purchaser of a residential building lot cannot sue the land developer for perceived deficiencies with the...more

Why Your Condominium Corporation May Be Liable For Builder-Developer’s Actions

Most condominium boards assume that their condominium would be constructed properly and meet the minimum standards set out in Ontario’s Building Code. Unfortunately, this is not always the case....more

Bright Line Rule: Collateral Estoppel Precludes Attacks on Quasi-Judicial Permit Decisions (But Stay Tuned: Rehearing Granted on...

Simply stated: “[a] collateral attack is not a substitute for an appeal” reasoned the Second Appellate District Court in Bowman v. California Coastal Commission (2nd Dist., Div. 6, 03/18/2014, B243015) ___Cal.App.2nd___,...more

Second District Addresses Interesting CEQA and CESA Species Mitigation Issues in Lengthy Partially Published Opinion Upholding...

In a lengthy, mostly published opinion filed on March 20, 2014, the Second District Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s judgment granting a writ of mandate, and upheld – as against state law challenges brought by a...more

Tower Lane Properties v. City of Los Angeles: JMBM Prevails in Published Court of Appeal Opinion Holding that a City's Erroneous...

JMBM has prevailed in the Court of Appeal on behalf of its client in a well-publicized and hotly-contested development project in the City of Los Angeles. The court's published opinion will come as welcome relief to property...more

U.S. Supreme Court Decision On Land-Use Exactions Impacts Developers, Government

If you have ever filed a zoning application and been subjected at the public hearing to a version of the game show “Let’s Make a Deal,” you may find of interest a June 2013 decision by the U.S. Supreme Court that addresses...more

Guidance For Developers: Protect Against Liability Through Planning And Regulatory Compliance

Recently, Phillips Lytle attorneys successfully appealed an award of punitive damages against a developer found liable for flooding neighboring property. Unanimously reversing the Appellate Division, the New York Court of...more

Illinois Supreme Court Debates Limitations and Repose for Architects and Contractors

November was a relatively light month for the Illinois Supreme Court on the civil docket, with only one civil case on for argument. Today, we report on the oral argument in Gillespie Community Unit School Dist. No. 7 v. Wight...more

Municipalities Can Make Mistakes Significantly Impacting Land Developers

This summer the Alberta Court of Appeal in the case of 1694192 Alberta Ltd. v. Lac La Biche County (Subdivision and Development Appeal Board), was asked to grant 1694192 Alberta Ltd. leave to challenge a decision made by the...more

All About “Commitment”: CEQA Review is Not Triggered By Orange County’s AB 900 Application For State Funding To Expand Existing...

In a decision recently ordered published, the Fourth District Court of Appeal added to the growing progeny of Save Tara, and affirmed the trial court’s judgment denying the City of Irvine’s writ petition seeking to compel...more

California Supreme Court Makes It Easier To Challenge Local Affordable Housing Requirements

Under the Mitigation Fee Act, when a city imposes a fee, dedication, reservation or other exaction on a development project, the developer has the right to pay under protest, obtain the necessary project approvals and proceed...more

Will Koontz Mean Big Changes or Business as Usual for Real Estate Development in California

On June 25, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court release its decision in Koontz v. St. John's River Water Managment District. Koontz has been called the most significant takings case since Kelo v. City of New London and has been...more

Mitigation Fee Act Applies to Developer’s Challenge of City’s Affordable Housing Set Aside Requirements

As required under its “inclusionary housing” ordinance, Palo Alto required a developer to set aside 10 condominium units as below market rate housing and make a cash payment to the City as a condition of obtaining a tentative...more

California Supreme Court Holds Mitigation Fee Act Applies to Inclusionary Housing

Yesterday, the California Supreme Court decided one of two pending cases dealing with inclusionary housing, holding that when a public agency requires a developer to convey units at below market rates and make substantial...more

California Supreme Court to Review Inclusionary Housing Requirements

On September 11, 2013, the California Supreme Court granted the California Building Industry Association's (CBIA) petition for review challenging a San Jose ordinance that imposed "inclusionary" housing obligations on housing...more

CEQA "Modernization"—Urgent End-of-Session Alert

We recently reported in our August 20, 2013, newsalert that Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg’s August 6 amendments to SB 731, The CEQA Modernization Act of 2013, continued to stray further from meaningful CEQA...more

Air Quality Thresholds of Significance Not a “Project” Under CEQA

A local air quality management district proposed new thresholds of significance for air pollutants to meet tighter state and federal air quality standards and to clarify analysis of air pollutant impacts under the California...more

Third Circuit Dismisses NSR Action Against Coal Plant, Affirms Limits of Clean Air Act Liability

On August 21, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit roundly dismissed an enforcement action brought under the federal Clean Air Act (CAA or the Act) by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and several...more

Court of Appeal Rules Setting Thresholds is Not a "Project" Under CEQA - Air District’s CEQA Thresholds for Greenhouse Gases...

Yesterday, the Court of Appeal for the First District issued its ruling in California Building Industry Association v. Bay Area Air Quality Management District. In a win for public agencies, the court held that establishing...more

State Supreme Court Makes Key CEQA Ruling Involving Baseline Analyses - Future Conditions Can Be Used as the Sole Baseline for...

In a victory for public agencies, the California Supreme Court today issued its much-anticipated ruling in Neighbors for Smart Rail v. Exposition Metro Line Construction Authority (August 5, 2013). The Court held that, in...more

Governmental Agencies and Regulatory Boards Must Now Provide a Reasoned Explanation for Their Decisions in Illinois

The days of governmental agencies or regulatory boards issuing decisions without providing any reasoning may be nearing an end. The Illinois Appellate Court for the Fourth District recently clarified in Medina Nursing Center,...more

New Decision Helps Multifamily Developers by Striking Down a Restrictive Local Ordinance

On July 11, 2013, in Latinos Unidos del Valle de Napa y Solano v. County of Napa (A135094), the First District reversed and remanded a trial court's decision that Napa County's restrictive density bonus ordinance did not...more

Court of Appeal Upholds San Jose Inclusionary Housing Ordinance as Legitimate Exercise of Local Police Power

In a recent decision, California's Sixth District Court of Appeal reversed a trial court order and upheld the City of San Jose's Inclusionary Housing Ordinance as a legitimate exercise of the local police power. California...more

Seventh Circuit Presents Statute of Limitations Roadblock for Future PSD Enforcement Matters

On July 8, 2013, in United States v. Midwest Generation, et. al, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled that the failure to obtain a prevention of significant deterioration (PSD) construction permit under the...more

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