Zoning, Planning & Land Use Residential Real Estate Civil Procedure

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Take That! Second District Court of Appeal Clears Major Hurdles for Newhall Ranch Project, Provides Guidance on California’s...

California’s Second District Court of Appeal, Division Five, issued a decision on March 20 in Center for Biological Diversity v. Department of Fish & Wildlife (Case No. BS131347), overturning the trial court’s decision...more

Bowman v. California Coastal Commission: New California Court of Appeal Decision Holds that a Collateral Attack is no Substitute...

Sometimes in land use law, the most impactful court holdings come from the simplest of cases. That may be the situation with the new California Court of Appeal decision in Bowman v. California Coastal Commission, issued by...more

Appellate Court Notes - Week ending March 24

SC18996 - Meyers v. Livingston, Adler, Pulda, Meiklejohn & Kelly, P.C. This case arrived from a divided Appellate Court where some jurist opined that the plaintiff’s attorney malpractice claims sounded solely in tort,...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

Proportionality, Nexus Don't Matter If It's Not A Taking

Landowners routinely have to give up something in return for a government agency's granting a discretionary permit. Developers are quite familiar with these requirements, as they are consistently compelled to dedicate...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

Requirement That Landowners Give Aircraft Overflight Easement Before Obtaining Building Permit Did Not Constitute a Taking of...

Landowners assert a requirement that they provide an aircraft overflight easement before obtaining a building permit constitutes a taking of their property without just compensation. The court of appeal held that the...more

Redevelopment Wind-Down: A Few Random Thoughts

I saw a couple of California redevelopment-related stories over the past week that seemed worthy of at least a brief comment. First, a court decision involving a rather bold argument by a public agency. ...more

Government Need Not Satisfy Nexus and Proportionality Tests if Dedication Requirement Does Not Otherwise Constitute a Taking

Landowners routinely have to give up something in return for a government agency’s granting a discretionary permit. However, there are limits, as the government agency cannot typically demand conditions that are not...more

“Spot Zoning” Found Permissible Where Small Parcel Given Greater Rights than Surrounding Properties and New Zoning Served the...

The Orange County Board of Supervisors (“Board”) approved a proposed senior citizen living community (“Project”) on a seven-acre parcel, creating a new zoning definition for senior residential housing and rezoning the parcel...more

Requiring Landowners To Dedicate An "Overflight" Easement Is Not A Taking, Even When All An Owner Seeks Is A Minor Building Permit

The United States Supreme Court decisions in Nollan and Dolan provide landowners with a useful tool for seeking compensation when government agencies use their land use authority to exact valuable property rights and other...more

Contaminated but Remediated Soil and Cortese Listing Does Not Compel Preparation of EIR

As 2013 came to a close, the California court of appeal in Parker Shattuck Neighbors v. Berkeley City Council (1st Dist., Div. 4, 12/30/13, A136873) ___Cal.App.1st___, 2013, upheld the City of Berkeley’s decision not to...more

CEQA-In-Reverse Case Opening Brief Filed In California Supreme Court

The California Building Industry Association (CBIA) laid out its case that CEQA contains no general directive requiring analysis of the existing environment’s impacts on a future project in a 50-page opening brief filed in...more

First District “Doubts” CEQA Operates In Reverse, Upholds Mitigated Negative Declaration For Urban Infill Project Despite Soil and...

In an opinion recently ordered published, the First District Court of Appeal extensively reviewed the relevant case law and expressed skepticism that CEQA would operate in reverse to require analysis of potential impacts on a...more

No Private Attorney General Fees for Homeowner

In Donald A. Norberg v. California Coastal Commission (4th Dist., Div. 3, 10/25/13, G047522) ___Cal.App.4th___, 2013, the court of appeal reversed the trial court’s award of private attorney general fees because the...more

Real Property, Financial Services & Title Insurance Case Law Update: December 2013

I. FLORIDA STATE CASES – SASHA FUNK GRANAI - Final Judgment: final judgment not final appealable order where related claim for breach of note remained – Centennial Bank v. NFP 1, LLC, No. 1D13-4516 (Fla. 1st DCA Dec....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

Substantial Evidence Test Applies to Decision Not to Require Additional EIR

In Latinos Unidos de Napa v. City of Napa (1st Dist., Div. 1, 10/10/13, A134959), ___ Cal.App.4th ___, 2013, the court of appeal found no abuse of discretion in the City of Napa’s approval of revisions to the housing element...more

Surface Owner’s Regulatory Taking Claim Denied

In Walton v. City of Midland, the surface owner of a 35 acre tract within the city limits of Midland, Texas, contended that a provision in a city permit for an oil or gas well was a regulatory taking because it required the...more

Wetland Projects: The Legality of Certain MDDEFP Requirements is Confirmed

On October 18, 2013, the Court of Appeal of Quebec reversed the Superior Court of Quebec’s decision in the Atocas de l’érable inc. case, quashing directive no. 06-01, used by the ministre du Développement durable, de...more

San Jose Case Could Change the Way Cities, Counties Adopt and Enforce Affordable Housing Ordinances

BB&K Attorney Christopher Diaz Examines the Issues Raised by the California Case - Although the housing bubble may have burst a few years back, there is still one region in California where housing prices remained red...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

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