Zoning, Planning & Land Use Elections & Politics

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US Presidential Permits for cross-border infrastructure

As the U.S.'s international trade in energy grows, so too has interest in the process for securing a federally required approval known as a Presidential Permit. The construction, operation, and maintenance of...more

ML Strategies Energy and Environment Update: Week of 11/24/2014

ENERGY AND CLIMATE DEBATE - Prior to recessing for the Thanksgiving holiday, the House and Senate both took several votes and introduced numerous pieces of legislation on energy and environment related issues last...more

The Unintended Effects of Protecting the Environment – How Banning Fracking Can Lead San Benito County To Bankruptcy

On November 4, 2014, San Benito County voters went to the poles to vote on Measure J, the measure designed to prohibit hydraulic fracturing, known as fracking, and related gas and oil extraction activities, as well as other...more

Fracking Preemption Fight to Play Out in San Benito County

It appears that San Benito County will be the venue for the much-anticipated legal battle over whether local jurisdictions in California can ban hydraulic fracturing. In early November, San Benito County passed a...more

Arlington/Fairfax Streetcar Halted in Its Tracks

This latest move follows recent projections increasing the total cost of the project by tens of millions of dollars and, perhaps as a result, Arlington County election results expressing strong voter opposition to the...more

Ohio Elections Yield Mixed Results on Local Hydraulic Fracturing Bans

Last week’s Election Day in Ohio produced victories for fracing supporters and opponents alike. Proposed hydraulic fracturing bans were on the ballot in four different municipal contests. Voters in one city, Athens, approved...more

Governor Brown Signs into Law AB 229 and SB 628, Giving New Life to Tax Increment Financing

In late September, Governor Brown signed into law AB 229 and SB 628, which are intended to finance public capital facilities or other specified projects of communitywide significance previously financed by redevelopment...more

Election Scoreboard: Frackers 4, Anti’s 4

Hydraulic fracturing bans had eight at-bats last Tuesday. Here are the results. Denton, Texas - YES 58.64%... NO 41.36%...more

Changes in Congress Affect California Water Interests

Last week’s Midterm elections shifted the political landscape toward the Republicans as they captured the majority in the Senate and increased their votes in the House....more

Shuffle Up and Deal: Casino Licenses Officially Awarded After Casino Law Repeal Fails

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission unanimously voted to formally award the Regions A and B resort casino licenses to Wynn MA LLC and MGM Springfield, respectively, a process which had been delayed until after the election on...more

Florida’s Medical Marijuana Amendment Defeated, but Zoning Issues Loom for Charlotte’s Web Law

In our previous post about the legal challenges that have been raised in the wake of the State of Florida’s establishment of selection rules for the issuance of licenses for growing and selling medical marijuana pursuant to...more

Los Angeles County Ballot: "P" is for Parks, Prevention and Protection – or Profligacy?

The full title of Measure P is: Safe Neighborhood Parks, Gang Prevention, Youth/Senior Recreation, Beaches/Wildlife Protection Measure. The initiative seeks to ensure continued funding for these listed concerns via a $23 tax...more

Proposition 48: A North Fork in the Road for Tribal Casinos

Continuing our series on the 2014 California election ballot, we now turn to Proposition 48, the Referendum on Indian Gaming Compacts. If voters approve the referendum November 4th, Native American tribes may be able...more

What’s Going On in Denton, Texas?

As you probably know, the Denton City Council denied a petition signed by several thousand citizens to ban hydraulic fracturing within the city limits. The denial sent the question to the November 4 general election ballot. ...more

Continuing Efforts to Ban Single-Use Plastic Carrier Bags In Massachusetts And Beyond

Over the last several years, a number of municipalities across the nation have passed ordinances imposing bans, fees, and/or taxes on single-use plastic carrier bags distributed by retailers. In the most recent 188th...more

State Bar, Environmental Law Section Presents Update on Fracking Regulations

The California State Bar, Environmental Law Section hosts an annual conference which welcomes attorneys and students from across the state to learn and discuss cutting edge environmental law issues. This year’s Environmental...more

Enhanced Infrastructure Financing Districts: New Hope for Cities and Counties

On September 29, 2014, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill 628 (Chapter 785) which provides a mechanism for cities and counties to form Enhanced Infrastructure Financing Districts (EIFDs) to divert property tax...more

California Enacts Comprehensive Groundwater Management Legislation

On September 16, 2014, California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law a historic package of three bills—Senate Bill 1168, Senate Bill 1319 and Assembly Bill 1739—instituting comprehensive groundwater management in...more

Dr. Seuss Explains "Zoning Reform"

It's not every day that an adult discussion about zoning reform begins with a reference to children's poetry, but so be it. Most [Real Estate Bar Association for Massachusetts] REBA members have at least a passing...more

Suit by Denton, Texas, Royalty Interest Owners Could be Harbinger of More Suits If Proposed Hydraulic Fracturing Ban Passes

Ahead of the November 4th vote that could make it the first city in Texas to ban hydraulic fracturing, the City of Denton has been sued by a group of royalty interest owners claiming that the city’s current temporary ban...more

Feds approve Quebec-to-NY power line

A proposed electric transmission line connecting Quebec to New York will receive a key federal approval, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. The Energy Department's decision to issue a Presidential permit to...more

Substantive Dispute over Land Application of Biosolids Remains Unresolved

Form over substance continues to obscure the substantive issue presented in the case of the City of Los Angeles (City) vs. Kern County (County). At its core, the dispute involves the land application of biosolids. Biosolids...more

New Law Expands Local Control Over Massage Industry

Law Revises Legislation Set to Sunset This Year - A new law substantially revises the state’s regulation over the massage industry, including expanding cities’ and counties’ ability to regulate massage therapists and...more

California Proposes Overhaul of Standards for Analyzing Traffic Impacts

Last month Governor Jerry Brown’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) released for public review and debate proposed draft amendments to the California Environmental Quality Act’s implementing guidelines (CEQA Guidelines)....more

Bridging Troubled Water: Yes or No on California Prop 1?

Fall is here. Most of us can't tell, given the soaring temperatures outside. A better thermometer might be the onslaught of political commercials we're now seeing on television. To prepare for the elections in...more

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