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Welcome Real Estate Partner Janice Kim!

Monchamp Meldrum Team Photo 2019

We are very excited to announce that Janice Kim has joined our firm as a partner.  Janice’s practice focuses on real estate transactions, including acquisitions, dispositions, leasing, development and related business matters for commercial real estate of all types and sizes.  Janice’s clients appreciate her thorough, timely and practical approach to all transactions.  Janice’s diverse transactional experience will complement our existing land use and environmental practice so that we can assist our clients throughout the entire life cycle of development…

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Design Review of By-Right Development Does Not Trigger CEQA Review

New Construction Homes

In McCorkle Eastside Neighborhood v. City of St. Helena, certified for publication on January 10, 2019, the First District Court of Appeal held that discretionary design review of an otherwise permitted use did not give the City the authority to mitigate environmental impacts and thus the project was not subject to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). Amanda Monchamp and Joey Meldrum (representing the developer) worked with the City of St. Helena to defend its approval of an 8-unit residential…

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Fourth District Rejects City’s Retroactive CEQA Baseline but Holds that Error did not Violate Constitutional Rights

In a case published on September 18, 2018 the Fourth District Court of Appeal held that CEQA does not apply to the lawful demolition of a potential historic resource prior to application for a development permit.  In Bottini v. City of San Diego, No. D071670 (4th Dist., Sep. 18, 2018), --- Cal.Rptr.3d ---- ,  the court affirmed that the proper baseline for CEQA analysis is the environmental condition at the time an application for development is submitted.  However, while the…

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SB 100 and EO B-55-18: California’s New 100% Clean Energy Policy

Solar Panels And Windmills With Blue Sky

On September 10th, 2018, shortly before the Global Climate Action Summit kicked off in San Francisco, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill (SB) 100,The 100 Percent Clean Energy Act of 2018. The bill received much attention for its two ambitious mandates: (1) accelerating the pace at which California’s investor-owned and publicly-owned electricity providers must achieve renewable portfolio standards (RPS) goals; and (2) establishing a state policy to provide 100% clean energy by December 31, 2045. Governor Brown also signed Executive Order…

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California Courts Refine the Limits of Ballot Power in Land Use Decisions

Hand Of A Person Casting A Ballot At A Polling Station

A pair of recent decisions have added new detail to the possibilities and limitations of ballot measures. In City of Morgan Hill v. Bushey, the California Supreme Court held that voters may use a referendum to invalidate a jurisdiction’s zoning amendment – even where it creates an inconsistency between the zoning ordinance and the general plan. In Ctr. For Community Action and Environ. Justice v. City of Moreno Valley, the 4th District restricted the scope of initiatives, holding that development…

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