Best Best & Krieger News Feed Best and Krieger is a Full Service Law Firmen-us24 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0800firmwise Water: Current Challenges and Future Solutions Conference<br /> Join Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Of Counsel Deborah Wordham, who is program co-chair, and Partner Paeter Garcia at The Seminar Group's &quot;California Water: Current Challenges and Future Solutions&quot; Conference.<br /> <br /> <strong>Deborah Wordham: </strong><br /> <em>&quot;Introduction and Overview&quot;</em><br /> Tuesday, Oct. 25, 8:45 - 9 a.m.<br /> <br /> Moderator: <em>&quot;Agricultural Water Supply&quot;</em><br /> Tuesday, Oct. 25, 11:15 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.<br /> <br /> <em> &quot;Introduction and Overview&quot;</em><br /> Wednesday, Oct. 26, 9 - 9:15 a.m.<br /> <br /> Moderator: <em>&quot;Water for the Environment and the Role of Impact Investors&quot;</em><br /> Wednesday, Oct. 26, 10:30 - 11:30 a.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>Paeter Garcia: </strong><br /> Moderator: <em>&quot;Groundwater: Moving Toward Sustainability&quot;</em><br /> Tuesday, Oct. 25, 1:30 - 2:45 p.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Tuesday, Oct. 25 - Wednesday, Oct. 26<br /> <br /> <strong>Where</strong><br /> InterContinental Los Angeles Century City<br /> 2151 Avenue of the Stars<br /> Los Angeles, CA 90067<br /> <br /> For more information and to register for this conference <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements25 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0800 APA California Conference<br /> Join Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP at the 2016 American Planning Association California Conference in Pasadena, Calif.<br /> <br /> <strong>BB&amp;K Speakers</strong><br /> <br /> Thomas Rice: &quot;CEQA and Noticing: Best Practices for Complying with CEQA, Brown Act, and Other Public Noticing Requirements&quot;<br /> Saturday, Oct. 22<br /> 1 - 2:30 p.m.<br /> <br /> Jennifer Lynch: &ldquo;10 Crucial Things Planning School Didn&rsquo;t Teach You&rdquo;<br /> Saturday, Oct. 22<br /> 1:15 - 2:30 p.m.<br /> <br /> Jennifer Lynch: &ldquo;Quick Hits: Demographics, Housing, CEQA and More&rdquo;<br /> Monday, Oct. 24<br /> 9:45 - 11:15 a.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Saturday, Oct. 22 - Tuesday, Oct. 25<br /> <br /> <strong>Where</strong><br /> Pasadena Convention Center<br /> 300 E. Green St.<br /> Pasadena, CA 91101<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements22 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0800 is Everything - When CEQA Review is Required for County Actions<br /> Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Partner Michelle Ouellette will present at the Public Works and Contracts Fall 2016 Study Section Conference.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Thursday, Oct. 20 - Friday, Oct. 21<br /> <br /> <strong>Where</strong><br /> Carmel Mission Inn<br /> 3665 Rio Rd.<br /> Carmel, CA 93923<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href=""><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements21 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0800 Rights Reforms - Are Changes Needed to Our Water Rights and Pricing Systems?<br /> Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Partner Kelly Salt will serve as a panelist at Session 26 of the 2016 Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite.<br /> <br /> California&rsquo;s historic drought has generated debate about how water should be allocated as well as new proposals for reform. In 2015, the Legislature enacted changes beefing up water measurement requirements for surface water diverters, and strengthening the state&rsquo;s enforcement authority. More expansive water rights reforms have been proposed. Litigation is also ongoing that challenges water rates created to encourage water conservation, which potentially conflict with constitutional and other limitations on rate setting. This panel explores whether major changes to our water rights and water pricing systems are desirable, and if so, what they may be.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Thursday, Oct. 20 - Sunday, Oct. 23<br /> <strong><br /> Where</strong><br /> Tenaya Lodge at Yosemite<br /> 1122 Highway 41<br /> Fish Camp, CA 93623<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href=""><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements20 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0800 Special Districts Association<br /> Join Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP at the 2016 California Special Districts Association Annual Conference in San Diego, Calif.<br /> <br /> <strong>BB&amp;K Speakers:</strong><br /> <br /> <strong>Kelly Salt</strong><br /> <em>&quot;Come Hell or High Water: Funding Conservation, Flood Control, and Stormwater&quot;</em> <br /> This presentation will address potential solutions to structuring tiered water rates in light of recent court decisions; and options for funding discounts for low income water, sewer, and solid waste service customers, and stormwater and flood control services.<br /> Tuesday, Oct. 11<br /> 2 &ndash; 3:15 p.m.<br /> <br /> <strong> Isabel Safie</strong> and <strong>Katrina Veldkamp</strong> <em><br /> &quot;Navigating the CalPERS Audit&quot;</em><br /> This presentation will discuss the most common compliance issues that lead to an audit finding and how an agency can address those issues to minimize the impact of an audit. In addition, we&rsquo;ll discuss the risk factors that make an agency more likely than not to be selected for a CalPERS audit. Finally, we&rsquo;ll walk you through the audit process and discuss the purpose and target of each phase of an audit.<br /> Wednesday, Oct. 12<br /> 2:15 &ndash; 3:30 p.m.<br /> <br /> <strong> Michelle Ouellette</strong> and <strong>Jennifer Lynch</strong> <em><br /> &quot;CEQA: What Special Districts Need to Know in 2016 and Beyond&quot;</em><br /> Special district actions must comply with fast-changing CEQA law. This panel addresses recent legislation and litigation, and will touch upon GHGs, AB 52, special events, water issues, and much more.<br /> Thursday, Oct. 13<br /> 8:30 - 10 a.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Monday, Oct. 10 - Wednesday, Oct. 13<br /> <br /> <strong>Where</strong><br /> San Diego Hotel and Marina<br /> 1380 Harbor Island Dr.<br /> San Diego, CA 92101<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href=""><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.<br />Conferences & Speaking Engagements10 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0800 Annual Conference<br /> Join Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP at the 2016 League of California Cities&rsquo; Annual Conference in Long Beach, Calif.<br /> <br /> <strong>BB&amp;K Speakers</strong><br /> <br /> Ruben Duran: &ldquo;Understanding Public Service Ethics Laws and Principles (AB 1234 Training)&rdquo;<br /> Wednesday, Oct. 5<br /> 9 - 11 a.m.<br /> <br /> Alisha Winterswyk: &ldquo;Complying with CEQA, Brown Act, and Other Public Noticing Requirements&rdquo;<br /> Thursday, Oct. 6<br /> 8 - 9:30 a.m.<br /> <br /> Gail Karish and Christy Marie Lopez: &ldquo;The Advance of Wireless Infrastructure&rdquo;<br /> Thursday, Oct. 6<br /> 4:15 - 5:30 p.m.<br /> <br /> Isabel Safie and Katrina Veldkamp: &ldquo;Reducing Pension and OPEB Costs&rdquo;<br /> Thursday, Oct. 6<br /> 4:15 - 5:30 p.m.<br /> <br /> Jordan Ferguson: &ldquo;What Municipalities Can Do About the Coming Drone-pocalypse&rdquo;<br /> Friday, Oct. 7<br /> 10:30 - 11:45 a.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Wednesday, Oct. 5 - Friday, Oct. 7<br /> <br /> <strong>Where</strong><br /> Long Beach Convention Center<br /> 300 E Ocean Blvd<br /> Long Beach, CA 90802<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.<br />Conferences & Speaking Engagements05 Oct 2016 00:00:00 -0800 Caliente v. Coachella Valley Water District, et al.<br /> Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Of Counsel Roderick Walston will discuss <em>Agua Caliente v. Coachella Valley Water District, et al.</em> at CLE International's Tribal Water Law's 5th Annual Conference.<br /> <br /> Rod will discuss differing perspectives of this case with Mark Reeves of Kilpatrick Townsend &amp; Stockton of Washington, D.C.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Thursday, Sept. 29<br /> 11 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>Where</strong><br /> Caesars Palace<br /> 3570 S. Las Vegas Blvd.<br /> Las Vegas, NV 89109<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements29 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0800’s 81st Annual Conference<br /> Join Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP at IMLA&rsquo;s 81st Annual Conference in San Diego, Calif.<br /> <strong><br /> BB&amp;K Speakers</strong><br /> <br /> Greg Rodriguez and Steven DeBaun: &quot;Autonomous Cars &amp; the Future of Transportation: Not a Horse and Buggy, but Not Quite the Starship Enterprise&hellip;Yet&quot;<br /> Thursday, Sept. 29<br /> 10:45 - 11:45 a.m.<br /> <br /> Shawn Hagerty (Tour Guide): &quot;Code Enforcement &amp; Land Use Tour&quot;<br /> Thursday, Sept. 29<br /> 2 p.m.<br /> <br /> Andre Monette (Speaker) and Shawn Hagerty (Moderator): &ldquo;The Safe Drinking Water Act and the Nation&rsquo;s Aging Water Infrastructure &amp; Liability for Lead Contamination of Water Supplies - Is It Covered by Insurance?&rdquo;<br /> Friday, Sept. 30<br /> 12:10 - 1:10 p.m.<br /> <br /> Gene Tanaka: &ldquo;Health and Environment Section Meeting&rdquo;<br /> Friday, Sept. 30<br /> 2:40 - 3:40 p.m.<br /> <br /> Greg Rodriguez and Steven DeBaun (Leading Table Discussion): &quot;WONK Breakfast&quot;<br /> Saturday, Oct. 1<br /> 7:30 - 8:30 a.m.<br /> <br /> Gail Karish and Gerry Lederer (Speakers), Joe Van Eaton (Moderator): &ldquo;Telecommunications - New Challenges for Local Counsel in a Broadband World: Why Public Safety, Economic Development, Planning and Zoning and Elected Officials Will Be Knocking On Your Door&rdquo;<br /> Saturday, Oct. 1<br /> 9 - 10:30 a.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Wednesday, Sept. 28 - Sunday, Oct. 2<br /> <br /> <strong> Where</strong><br /> Hilton San Diego Bayfront<br /> 1 Park Blvd.<br /> San Diego, CA 92101<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements28 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0800 Approaches for Defensible Cumulative Impacts Analyses Under CEQA<br /> Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Of Counsel Sarah Owsowitz will serve as a presenter at AEP - San Francisco Bay Area Chapter's &quot;Practical Approaches for Defensible Cumulative Impacts Analyses Under CEQA.&quot; The presenters will share practical approaches to drafting a defensible cumulative impacts analysis under CEQA.<br /> <strong><br /> When:</strong><br /> Wednesday, Sept. 28<br /> 5:15 - 6:45 p.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>Where:</strong><br /> Ecology &amp; Environment<br /> 505 Sansome St.<br /> San Francisco, CA 94111<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a href="" target="_blank"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements28 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0800 Counsel Teamwork: The Exide Story<strong>By Robert Ragland<br /> <br /> Justice:</strong> <em>(1) the principle or ideal of just dealing or right action; (2) conformity to this principle or ideal</em><br /> <br /> The concept of environmental justice is straightforward, the pathway to practical solutions are often circuitous. In the case of Exide Technologies, the road ahead looked tortuous. Exide was a battery recycling facility in the City of Vernon that had operated for 33 years on a temporary permit issued by the State of California. Because of its location and exclusive regulation by the State, it was outside the County&rsquo;s jurisdiction. After it was determined that the Exide facility had been emitting a significant amount of hazardous waste into the air, including lead, arsenic, and benzene, the State notified Exide that it would not issue another operating permit. Exide, which had previously declared bankruptcy in Delaware, closed its doors in March 2015. The County was then faced with a particularly intractable problem of how to bring relief to the residents living near the facility.<br /> <br /> Although Exide was no longer emitting dangerous chemicals, years of damage had already significantly impacted the surrounding communities, including Maywood and Boyle Heights. &ldquo;The Exide chemicals have raised the cancer risk of tens of thousands of people around the Exide facility,&rdquo; said Dr. Cyrus Rangan, Director of the County&rsquo;s Toxics Epidemiology Program.<br /> <br /> State and County officials determined that environmental testing of all residential properties within a 1.7 mile radius of the facility was needed. This area includes approximately 10,000 homes. Initial soil testing revealed that lead levels in soil around some of the homes were found to be high enough to characterize the yards as hazardous waste sites. Total cleanup costs were estimated to be as high as $400 million. Based on the State&rsquo;s bankruptcy claim, Exide paid $9 million for cleanup with an obligation to pay just another $5 million in 2020. The State was able to assess and clean 170 homes before it ran out of funds. State assessment and cleanup efforts slowed to a trickle. The residents were outraged, as the State allotted only $8 million for cleanup in the 2016-17 budget. The problem was straightforward: How could the County and First District Supervisor Hilda Solis &mdash; acting as concerned citizens &mdash; bring relief to the impacted residents in a timely manner, while supporting the State in its efforts to hold Exide responsible for this environmental catastrophe?<br /> <br /> The pathway for resolution was not straightforward. It involved the coordination of litigation strategy, public testimony before the Assembly, community messaging, legislative initiatives, and environmental field testing.<br /> <br /> Early on, our County Counsel, Mary Wickham, realized the complexity of the issues presented. She assembled a team to support Supervisor Solis&rsquo; efforts to bring relief to the affected communities. The team was comprised of members of the Department of Public Health (DPH), the Chief Executive Office&rsquo;s Legislative Advocates Office in Sacramento, outside counsel from Best Best &amp; Krieger, representatives from the First District, and County Counsel attorneys. Each group contributed its experience and expertise to solve the continual and evolving challenges met by the team on its path.<br /> <br /> The first challenge was to increase the pace of residential home assessment to determine the scope and severity of the contamination. In November 2015, the Board approved a $2 million funding request to hasten the assessment and cleanup of the contaminated soil in the 1.7 mile radius around Exide. This effort required the coordination of DPH&rsquo;s outreach to residents to permit access to their properties, creation of a rapid soil testing protocol, and teams of certified lead specialists contracted to perform the testing.<br /> <br /> Between February 29 and March 9, 2016, DPH assessed lead in soil on 500 residential properties. The testing was carried out by 12 three-person teams in Maywood, Commerce, and East Los Angeles. The teams tested properties at a rate of approximately 48 per day.<br /> <br /> The next challenge was how to obtain more dollars for residential cleanup. The $8 million earmarked in the Governor&rsquo;s budget was simply not enough. This key development took us to Sacramento. The Exide team needed to hold meetings with legislators, involve community members, strategize with its partners, and create public advocacy messaging in support of this goal. In January, Supervisor Solis, along with members of County Counsel&rsquo;s Exide team, traveled to Sacramento to testify before the Legislative Committee on Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials. The Supervisor&rsquo;s heartfelt testimony relayed the troubling stories of residents living with debilitating and permanent medical conditions. She and other legislators advocated for $70 million for accelerated residential cleanup efforts. The testimony of DPH Interim Director Cynthia Harding supported this &ldquo;ask&rdquo;, as DPH was providing access to care and specialized health screenings for the early identification and treatment of potential health problems caused by the Exide facility&rsquo;s environmental contamination.<br /> <br /> Shortly after the team&rsquo;s return, Governor Brown proposed $176.6 million in spending to remediate the Exide contamination. In recognition of this extraordinary result, before the Exide team&rsquo;s next meeting Supervisor Solis provided red velvet cake and expressed her gratitude for all of the extensive work that kept the County on its path. At the meeting, John Holloway of Best Best &amp; Krieger, observed &ldquo;Each member of the team assembled by the County Counsel&rsquo;s office played a key role in planning and executing the work that helped secure this phenomenal result. The progress on the Exide matter demonstrates that the County has tremendous resources to get big things accomplished when different divisions of the County work together in a coordinated manner.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> In April 2016, the Legislature approved this funding to expedite and expand testing and cleanup around the former Exide facility. Contaminated soil from places where lead levels are highest will be removed from residential properties, schools, daycare centers and parks within a 1.7-mile radius of the Exide plant. This hard-fought victory was a direct result of our Exide team&rsquo;s coordinated effort to bring this issue to the forefront of the State&rsquo;s priorities, and it provided a light at the end of the tunnel for residents.<br /> <br /> Ben Polk, Justice Deputy for the First District, described the Exide team&rsquo;s continuing journey: &ldquo;Having our cross-County Exide team meet each week to discuss key decisions has been invaluable in developing our strategy and navigating new developments. Our team has succeeded, time and again, in integrating legal, political, and operational priorities.&rdquo; When asked about the Exide team, County Counsel Mary Wickham commented that &ldquo;it is a very exciting time to be an attorney in the Office of County Counsel. Our current Board is socially proactive and is tackling the issues of our day. This engaged and active Board deserves an equally engaged and committed Office of County Counsel with lawyers that communicate across divisional and departmental lines to provide the best legal analysis and work product. And that is what has occurred with the Exide team.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> The Exide team soldiers on. It will continue to support the State&rsquo;s efforts to clean the homes of those affected by 30 years of environmental contamination by Exide.<br /> <br /> <em>This article was originally published in the August 2016 edition of The County Counsel Newsletter. Reprinted with permission. The original article can be found by </em><a href="/88E17A/assets/files/Documents/CountyCounsel-Exide-Holloway.pdf" target="_blank"><em><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">clicking here</span></em></a><em>.</em>BB&K In The News23 Sep 2016 00:00:00 -0800