Zoning, Planning & Land Use Transportation Environmental

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Oakley to Condemn Century-Old Building for Street Widening Project

As cities become more dense and urbanized, it is common for infrastructure to get outdated or insufficient to handle increased demand. We see this with roads, highways, schools, and even utilities. When new infrastructure...more

Preparing for the Future – SCAG Adopts 2016 RTP/SCS

The Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) is the nation’s largest regional planning agency and is governed by an 86-member Regional Council, made up of elected officials from among the six counties and 191...more

FHWA Proposes Bold Transportation Performance Measures to Reduce Carbon Emissions

Perhaps only by coincidence, on April 22—“Earth Day”—the Federal Highway Administration (“FHWA”) published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (“NPRM”) that, for the first time, would set performance measures for greenhouse gas...more

Court Rejects ESA Challenge to County’s Local Land Use Planning

On April 8, the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida held that Collier County’s (County) land use planning regulations were complimentary, not contrary to the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The...more

Challenge to Ordinance Prohibiting Mobile Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Goes Up in Smoke

Union of Medical Marijuana Patients, Inc. v. City of Upland (3/25/16, D069293) In 2007, the City of Upland banned both fixed and mobile medical marijuana dispensaries from any zone within the City’s limits. Presumably...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - March 2016

Environmental and Policy Focus - Marin assemblymember proposes Australian water trading market approach to address drought - Marin Independent Journal - Feb 29 State Assemblymember Marc Levine, D-Marin County, has...more

Corner Briefing: Grant and Loan Opportunities for Infill Projects

This is the first edition in an ongoing series of "Corner Briefings" highlighting urban infill legal tools and opportunities. These updates will identify new legal cases, legislative updates, grant opportunities and other...more

Real Estate and Land Use - February 2016

New Draft CEQA Guidelines Evaluating Transportation Impacts—Level of Service No Longer Considered to Be an Environmental Impact - The Governor's Office of Planning and Research (OPR) was mandated by SB 743 in 2013 to...more

Updates to CEQA Guidelines for Transportation Impacts Analysis Under SB 743

On January 20, 2016, the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (“OPR”) released a revised draft of thresholds for measuring transportation impacts under the California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”). These draft...more

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

Deadlines Are Fast Approaching as Congress Is Already Considering Priorities for Next Water Resources Development Act (WRDA)

Stakeholders interested in U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) civil works projects, water resources policy, or funding for harbor, inland waterway, and other projects should engage Congress to advance their priorities as...more

Office of Planning and Research Proposes Revisions to State CEQA Guidelines

Comments Sought by Feb. 29 on the Transition from LOS to VMT - The California Office of Planning and Research has issued proposed revisions to the State CEQA Guidelines implementing Senate Bill 743 (2013). SB 743...more

The FAST Act Seeks to Streamline the Environmental Review of Infrastructure Projects

On December 4, 2015, President Obama signed into law the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act—a five-year, $305-billion transportation authorization and spending bill. The FAST Act largely focuses on funding...more

Environmental Policy Quarterly

Welcome to the Winter 2016 edition of Environmental Policy Quarterly, published jointly by the Environmental, Land and Natural Resources Practice Group and the Public Policy and Law Practice Group of K&L Gates. This...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - January 2016 #2

Environmental and Policy Focus - State lawmaker seeks to close old SoCal Gas wells in Aliso Canyon - Los Angeles Business - Jan 12 State Senator Fran Pavley is calling for Southern California Gas Co. to close older...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - January 2016

Environmental and Policy Focus - Gov. Brown declares state of emergency over natural gas leak - San Diego Union Tribune - Jan 6 - California Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency Wednesday over a...more

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

Environmental Provisions of the FAST Act

On December 4, 2015, President Obama signed into law the “Fix America’s Surface Transportation Act,” Public Law 114-94 ("FAST Act"). As finally enacted, the FAST Act exceeds 400 pages in length. This paper reviews those...more

New Highway Law Streamlines Federal Permitting and Environmental Review for Large Infrastructure Projects

Earlier this month, President Obama signed the Highway Authorization Act into law. One of the objectives of this legislation was to expedite federal authorization (licensing, permitting, approval, etc.) and environmental...more

Energy, Infrastructure Permitting Improvement Legislation Signed by the President

The Highway Authorization Act signed into law by President Obama last Friday, December 4, includes an important set of reforms for streamlining the federal permitting process for infrastructure projects in a broad range of...more

Surface Transportation Reauthorization Bill Looks to Be Moving Forward

We’ve been following the status of highway and transportation funding for quite some time, previously noting that Congress kept kicking the can down the road without agreeing on a long-term solution. Finally, that is no...more

How to Fix Your GHG Analysis After the California Supreme Court’s Newhall Ranch Decision

My colleague, Michael Sherman, posted yesterday about two issues decided in the California Supreme Court’s decision in Center for Biological Diversity v. California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Today, I’ll address the...more

Crude-By-Rail Update: Siting a Crude Oil Transloading Terminal in California? Developers Should Seek Old Industrial Sites and...

Proposed crude-by-rail (CBR) projects in California increasingly face opposition lawsuits designed to stall and derail the terminals. The suits often focus on alleged noncompliance with the California Environmental Quality...more

UPDATE: Texas RRC Agrees Earthquakes Not Caused by EnerVest, XTO Injection Wells

In a November 3 decision, the Texas Railroad Commission (RRC) agreed with an administrative law judge (ALJ) that two wastewater injection wells, one operated by EnerVest Operating LLC and the other by Exxon Mobil Corp....more

Second District Rejects CEQA And Fair Transit Hearing Challenges To LA Metro’s Westside Subway Extension Project In Lengthy...

In a 65-page opinion certified for publication and filed October 22, 2015, the Second Appellate District Court of Appeal affirmed the Los Angeles County Superior Court’s judgment denying writ petitions by the City of Beverly...more

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