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Georgia EPD Appoints New Brownfield Program Coordinator

Beth Blalock has been named the new Brownfield Coordinator for the Georgia Environmental Protection Division, replacing Madeleine Kellam, who has led the brownfield program since its inception and will retire at the end of...more

Tuolumne Jobs Case

The California Supreme Court has just issued an opinion which may encourage the use of initiatives. At issue in the case was an initiative to adopt a specific plan to streamline approval for construction and operation of a...more

Other 2014 Environmental and Land Use Legislation: Fracking, Brownfields, State Land Conservation, Private Easements, Wood Burning...

The General Assembly passed noteworthy bills on six diverse environmental and land use subjects. Hydraulic Fracturing Waste - A deceptively simple bill concerning hydraulic fracturing waste, PA 14-200, emerged...more

California Supreme Court Holds No CEQA Review Required for a Voter Initiative-Sponsored Ordinance

In a relatively short decision, the California Supreme Court held in Tuolumne Jobs & Small Business Alliance v. Superior Court of Tuolumne County (Tuolumne Jobs) that the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) does not...more

The California Supreme Court Further Limits the Scope of CEQA Review for Voter-Sponsored Initiatives in Tuolumne Jobs & Small...

Voter-driven initiatives meeting California Elections Code requirements may be adopted directly by local governments without first conducting a full review under the California Environmental Quality Act ("CEQA"), according to...more

California Supreme Court Holds CEQA Inapplicable To City’s Adoption Of Qualified Voter Initiative Approving Wal-Mart “Supercenter”...

In a concise 15-page opinion filed August 7, 2014, the California Supreme Court reversed the Fifth District Court of Appeal’s judgment which had held that a city may not adopt a voter-sponsored initiative with potential...more

Members Seek Update to Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act

On January 9, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 2279, the Reducing Excessive Deadline Obligations Act. The package, composed of three separate bills, seeks to modernize existing federal law and increase the role...more

Senate Introduces Bill To Amend Endangered Species Act

A bill to amend the Endangered Species Act (ESA)—entitled the Endangered Species Management Self-Determination Act (Bill)—has been introduced in the United States Senate. The Bill, authored by Senators Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Mike...more

Polanco Act 2.0 Set to Commence in 2014

When Governor Brown eliminated California’s redevelopment agencies with one swipe of his pen (OK, fine, he had a bit of help from the California Supreme Court as well), one of the things that got a bit lost in the ensuing...more

Local Agencies Empowered to Order the Cleanup of Contaminated Properties - Assembly Bill 440 Provides Agencies Immunity from...

Gov. Brown recently signed Assembly Bill 440 into law, providing an important tool for local agencies to force the cleanup of contaminated properties within their borders. AB 440 builds upon the Polanco Redevelopment Act...more

The Climate Change Compromise and Energy Efficiency: Congress and the President Intersect in Your Building Thermostat

As the 113th Congress grows more antagonistic, it seems that energy efficiency is one of the few issues on which almost everybody in the government can agree. Using energy more efficiently saves money, helps prevent...more

CEQA Reform Update

This year has seen more momentum for CEQA reform than in many previous years. California’s economy has placed a spotlight on the burdens that environmental regulations and litigation, particularly CEQA litigation, impose on...more

Supreme Court Will Review CEQA Decision From Fifth District In Wal-Mart Citizen Initiative Case

After receiving three separate petitions for review, including petitions from real parties Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. and the City of Sonora, the California Supreme Court voted unanimously on February 13, 2013 to grant review of...more

Town of Seneca Fall files petition against zoning board

SENECA FALLS — Attorney Steven Getman has served an order to show cause on the town of Seneca Falls Zoning Board of Appeals. The Seneca Falls Town Board objects to the ZBA’s decision to grant a use variance to the owner of...more

Site Remediation Reform Act Evolution

Although SRRA seems to be thorough and well written, there will be amendments to laws that were not anticipated or addressed in the legislative process that could be problematic for persons remediating property....more

CEQA Reform – Legislature Balks In 2012: What is the Starting Point for Working Group Discussions and 2013 Legislation?

In recognition of the complexity and political rancor surrounding CEQA reform, Governor Jerry Brown quipped this week that CEQA reform was "the Lord's work." Concurrent with his comments, major CEQA reforms were being...more

Florida HB503: Excitement Grows Over This New Law as a Good Thing for Florida Real Estate Development

While everyone waits for Florida Governor Rick Scott to sign HB503 into law, and it's expected that Scott will do so - no veto here - Florida real estate developers and those who work with land development are becoming more...more

Governor’s Veto Said CEQA Is Enough, No Need For Law Requiring “Economic Impact Report” For Superstores

Like the Sherlock Holmes story featuring the “dog that didn’t bark,” sometimes proposed legislation that doesn’t pass can nonetheless provide fundamental insights. A case in point: Senate Bill 469 (Vargas), the Small &...more

Governor Vetoes Economic Impact Report Requirement for Superstores

One of this year’s most controversial bills was vetoed by Governor Brown in the final minutes of October 9, 2011, his last day to act on the bill. SB 469 (Vargas), the Small & Neighborhood Business Protection Act, would have...more

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