Best Best & Krieger News Feedhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=39&format=xml&directive=0&stylesheet=rss&records=50Best Best and Krieger is a Full Service Law Firmen-us24 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800firmwisehttp://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rssVeterans Leadership Academy and Elected Officials Training Academy 2.0http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39717&format=xml<br /> Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Partner Ruben Duran will provide training on &quot;Everyday Ethics for Local Officials: AB 1234 Compliance&quot; during the California Latino Leadership Institute's&nbsp;Veterans Leadership Academy&nbsp;and Elected Officals Training Academy 2.0. The session&nbsp;will provide attendees tactical solutions for&nbsp;everyday ethical issues&nbsp;local officals encounter and&nbsp;an opportunity to recieve their certification for completing AB 1234 training.<br /> <br /> <strong>When<br /> </strong>Friday, Oct. 9, 2015<br /> 3:30 - 6:30 p.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>Where<br /> </strong>Embassy Suites Los Angeles - Downey<br /> 8425 Firestone Blvd.<br /> Downey, CA 90241<br /> <br /> For more information, <a target="_blank" href="http://socalatinos.org/events/"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>&nbsp;(coming soon).Conferences & Speaking Engagements09 Oct 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39717&format=xml2015 IMLA Annual Conferencehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41608&format=xml<p>Join BB&amp;K at the 2015 International Municipal Lawyers Association Annual Conference.<br /> <br /> <strong>BB&amp;K Speakers</strong><br /> <br /> Shawn Hagerty and Paeter Garcia: &ldquo;Today's Water Wars - Water Rights and Water Quality: From East to West Coast&rdquo;<br /> <span>Sunday, Oct. 4<br /> 9:15 -10:15 a.m.<br /> </span><br /> Jordan Ferguson&nbsp;(panelist): &ldquo;The Sharing Economy: Uber and Airbnb - Can They Exist in a Regulated World? Will They Save or Destroy Your Community?&quot;<br /> Monday,&nbsp;Oct. 5<br /> 8:45 - 10:15 a.m</p> <p>Steve Anderson: &ldquo;Implementation of the Federal Endangered Species Act: Practical Strategies for Moving Forward with Public Projects&quot;<br /> Tuesday, Oct. 6<br /> 10:45 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.<br /> <br /> Joe Van Eaton and Gail Karish: &ldquo;Telecom - Shot Clocks, Municipal Broadband and How the FCC Controls Your World&quot;<br /> Monday, Oct. 5<br /> 2:30 - 3:30 p.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>When:</strong><br /> Saturday Oct. 3 - Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015<br /> <br /> <strong>Where:</strong><br /> Rio Hotel<br /> 3700 W. Flamingo Road<br /> Las Vegas, NV 89103<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="http://imlalasvegas2015.org/"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements04 Oct 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41608&format=xmlThe Future of Cable Franchisinghttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40327&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Partner Joseph Van Eaton&nbsp;is a panelist&nbsp;during the National Association of Telecommunications Officers and Advisors (NATOA)'s 35th Annual Local Government Conference. Joseph's panel disccusion, &quot;The Future of Cable Franchising,&quot; will&nbsp;cover&nbsp;how current video service&nbsp;trends may impact the future of cable franchising and what these trends mean for local governments.&nbsp; <br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Wednesday, Sept. 9<br /> 9:30 - 10:45 a.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>Where<br /> </strong>Hard Rock Hotel<br /> 207 5th Avenue <br /> San Diego, CA 92101<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="https://www.natoa.org/policy-advocacy/fcc-issues-of-interest/2015-ac-main.html"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements09 Sep 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40327&format=xmlFranchising and Renewal Updatehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41607&format=xmlBest Best &amp; Krieger LLP&nbsp;Partner Gail Karish is a panelist during the Alliance for Community Media's 2015 Annual Conference.&nbsp;Gail's panel, &quot;Franchising and Renewal Update,&quot; will discuss franchising and&nbsp; renewals issues and opportunities, such as getting PEG on HD channels, PEG funding options, EPG, franchise fees and more. In addition to discussing these issues&nbsp;the session will&nbsp;also provide an update on the challenges and progress during recent franchise processes.&nbsp;<br /> <br /> <strong>When:</strong><br /> Friday, August 14, 2015<br /> 9 -10:30 a.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>Where:</strong><br /> Hilton Pasadena<br /> <span itemprop="streetAddress">168 South Los Robles Ave.<br /> </span><span itemprop="addressLocality">Pasadena, </span><span itemprop="addressRegion">CA </span><span itemprop="postalCode">91101</span><br /> &nbsp;<br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="http://allcommunitymedia.sched.org/info"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.<br />Conferences & Speaking Engagements14 Aug 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41607&format=xmlBullying...The Legal View (and cost)http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40638&format=xmlBest Best &amp; Krieger LLP Partners Jack Clarke, Jr. and Cathy Holmes will present &quot;Bullying...The Legal View (and Cost)&quot; during the Safe Schools Conference. The workshop will look at several important legal theories in regards to student-to-student bullying, which will assist educators and risk managers in spotting potential trouble and taking steps to protect students and the schools they attend.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Thursday, July 30<br /> 9 - 11:15 a.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>Where<br /> </strong>Hilton Orange County Costa Mesa<br /> 3050 Bristol Street in Costa Mesa, CA 92626 <br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="http://safeschoolsconference.com/"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements30 Jul 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40638&format=xmlDealing With the Drought: State Water Resources Control Board (WRCB) Mandatory Water Consumption Reduction Measureshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39490&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Partner Kelly Salt will present &ldquo;Dealing With the Drought: State Water Resources Control Board (WRCB) Mandatory Water Consumption Reduction Measures&rdquo; at Law Seminars International&rsquo;s program, &ldquo;Municipal Water Utility Ratemaking in California.&rdquo; Kelly will give an update on Gov. Jerry Brown&rsquo;s Executive Order requiring 25 percent reductions and the Water Resources Control Board&rsquo;s implementation efforts and how the rate structuring/pricing/penalty provisions for encouraging conservation mesh with Proposition 218.</p> <p>The day-long seminar will be in Sacramento, and webcast live.</p> <p><strong>When</strong><br /> Monday, July 20, 2015<br /> 2:45 p.m.</p> <p>For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.lawseminars.com/detail.php?SeminarCode=15MWR2CA"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements20 Jul 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39490&format=xmlGeneral Manager Leadership Summithttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39545&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP partner's&nbsp;Fernando Avila and Nancy Park&nbsp;are among the speakers at the California Special District Association's event, &ldquo;General Manager Leadership Summit.&rdquo; <br /> <br /> <u>BB&amp;K Speakers:</u><br /> <br /> <strong>Fernando Avila</strong>, &quot;CEQA: What Special Districts Need to Know in 2015 and Beyond&quot;<br /> This panel will address the recent changes to CEQA from legislation and cases decided in 2015. Panelists will discuss how endangered species laws integrate with CEQA requirements for biological resources, effectively use CEQA exemptions following recent California Supreme Court rulings and analyzing the impacts of climate and greenhouse gases as part of public projects.<br /> 2:00 - 3:15 P.M.<br /> <br /> <strong>Nancy Park</strong>, &ldquo;Behind the Scenes Negotiating Secrets&rdquo;&nbsp;<br /> An overview of the changes in legislation related to public sector labor relations in the past year and a look at decisions from the Public Employment Relations Board that deal with how agencies interact with employee organizations.<br /> 3:30 - 4:30 P.M.<br /> <br /> <strong>When</strong><br /> Monday, July 13, 2015<br /> <br /> <strong>Where</strong><br /> Hyatt Regency Newport Beach<br /> 1107 Jamboree Road<br /> Newport Beach, CA 92660<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="http://gmsummit.csda.net/"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements13 Jul 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39545&format=xmlBB&K Webinar: AB 52: CEQA's New Requirementhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40965&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger attorney Sarah Owsowitz will present &quot;AB 52: CEQA's New Requirement.&quot; Starting on July 1, every public agency in California will have significant new California Environmental Quality Act duties. In addition to considering a project&rsquo;s potential impact on historic and archaeological resources, agencies will now have to consider a project&rsquo;s potential to impact tribal cultural resources - essentially any object of cultural value to a California Native American tribe -&nbsp;&nbsp;when preparing an Environmental Imapct Report or a negative declaration.</p> <p>Also, agencies must consult on a project&rsquo;s potential to impact a tribal cultural resource with any California Native American tribe who requests a consultation.&nbsp;Consultation may include:</p> <ul> <li>The level of environmental review necessary;</li> <li>The significance of a tribal cultural resource and of a project's impact on that resource; and</li> <li>Project alternatives and/or mitigation, including those recommended by the tribe.&nbsp;</li> </ul> <p>These are big and complex changes, and understanding and keeping track of them will be essential to an agency&rsquo;s ongoing CEQA compliance.</p> <p><strong>When:</strong><br /> Thursday, June 25, 2015<br /> 11 a.m. &ndash; Noon</p> <p>To register for this free webinar, please <a target="_blank" href="https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4269693189109606401"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p>Seminars and Webinars25 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40965&format=xmlDrought Bill To Combat Water Shortages Passes In California Legislaturehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41596&format=xml<p>The California Legislature approved a budget bill that would grant the state authority to force water systems to consolidate to serve disadvantaged communities where a steady supply of clean drinking water is not available. Senate Bill 88 also would give public water suppliers the power to impose civil fines of up to $10,000 for violations of water conservation programs, impose new measuring and reporting requirements for water diversions, and suspend environmental review for certain drought-related projects.</p> <p>The bill approved Friday, which can be read <a target="_blank" href="http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/pub/15-16/bill/sen/sb_0051-0100/sb_88_bill_20150619_enrolled.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff">here</span></a>, passed on divided votes of 24-14 in the Senate and 52-28 in the Assembly. It now awaits Gov. Jerry Brown&rsquo;s signature. &nbsp;</p> <p>The legislation comes on the heels of unprecedented action last month by the State Water Resources Control Board to address an <a target="_blank" href="http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/waterrights/water_issues/programs/drought/docs/040115_executive_order.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff">emergency order</span></a> by Brown. On May 5 the Board approved <a target="_blank" href="http://www.waterboards.ca.gov/waterrights/water_issues/programs/drought/docs/emergency_regulations/rs2015_0032_with_adopted_regs.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff">emergency regulations</span></a> designed to achieve an overall 25 percent reduction in potable urban water use across California. Some areas must achieve water use reductions as high as 36 percent. The regulations have left cities, special districts and other water suppliers scrambling to adopt urgency ordinances and other measures to comply with the regulations.</p> <p><u>Forced Consolidations of Water Suppliers</u></p> <p>One of the bill&rsquo;s more controversial elements involves granting the State Water Resources Control Board authority to force local water systems in disadvantaged communities located in an unincorporated area, or served by a mutual water company, to consolidate to deliver safe drinking water to disadvantaged communities. This provision would apply where a water system within a disadvantaged community consistently fails to provide a supply of safe drinking water. In such cases, the Board may order consolidation with a public water system (the &ldquo;receiving water system&rdquo;). The consolidation may be physical or operational. The Board could also order the extension of service to such a community, so long as the extension is an interim extension in preparation for consolidation. The provision grants authority to the Board to set timelines and performance measures to complete such consolidations.</p> <p>The provision drew harsh criticism among legislators and communities throughout California as an unnecessary and inappropriate abuse of power by the state&rsquo;s executive arm. Concerns were raised that the new measures would enable the state to bypass the normal consolidation procedures overseen by Local Agency Formation Commissions operating in counties throughout California. The consolidation provision was developed and passed by the Legislature within a matter of days, with minimal public policy discussion and debate. Concerns were also raised about forced consolidations involving private water suppliers, which have complicated governance structures and land and property rights, and about potential debts and liabilities from absorbed water systems.</p> <p>Under the legislation, forced consolidation or service-extension measures would be undertaken only after the Board has taken other steps, including encouraging voluntary consolidation or extension of service and meeting various requirements for consultations, efforts to improve water service, and public hearings. If consolidation ultimately is ordered, the Board must make funds available, &ldquo;as necessary and appropriate&rdquo; and &ldquo;upon appropriation by the Legislature,&rdquo; to the receiving water system for costs related to consolidation or extension of service. The legislation requires the Board to coordinate with the appropriate local agency formation commission and other local agencies to facilitate the change of organization or reorganization, and adequately compensate owners of a privately owned subsumed water system for the fair market value of the system as prescribed in the bill.</p> <p>Disadvantaged communities are defined as communities with an annual median household income of less than 80 percent of the statewide annual median household income.</p> <p><u>Conservation Fines and Penalties</u></p> <p>One of the more difficult aspects of the Board&rsquo;s emergency regulations is how to persuade customers to comply with locally designed water restrictions aimed at achieving the mandatory water use reductions. SB 88 provides new tools.</p> <p>The bill amends section 377 of the California Water Code, which contains provisions for criminal convictions, to permit a court or public water supplier to hold a person civilly liable for violations of water conservation programs and regulations. The fines are not to exceed $10,000 for violating a local water conservation program adopted under Water Code section 376 or for violating an emergency regulation adopted by the Water Board pursuant to Water Code section 1058.5. This provision would be codified as subdivision (b) of Water Code section 377. For residential water users, the civil liability for the first violation may not exceed $1,000 unless the court or public entity finds the following extraordinary situations: the residential water user had actual notice of the requirement that was violated; the conduct was intentional; and the amount of water at issue was substantial. On the 31st day after a person has been notified of a violation under subdivision (b), the water user &ldquo;may additionally be civilly liable&rdquo; in an amount not to exceed $10,000, plus $500 for each additional day the violation continues. Civil liability imposed pursuant to Water Code section 377 shall be collected by the public entity and expended solely for purposes of water conservation. In addition to these remedies, this bill authorizes a public entity to enforce water use limitations by a volumetric penalty in an amount established by the public entity.</p> <p>SB 88 allows the top executive officer of public entities to identify &ldquo;designees&rdquo; to issue citations and complaints where violations of local water conservation programs or emergency Water Board regulations have occurred.</p> <p><u>Additional Provisions</u></p> <p>SB 88 includes exemptions from the California Environmental Quality Act if a project: mitigates drought conditions; is for construction or expansion of a recycled water pipeline, and any directly related infrastructure, or certain projects related to groundwater replenishment.&nbsp;The exemption expires January 1, 2017. &nbsp;It also includes new requirements that people who divert 10 acre feet of water or more per year measure their diversions, maintain records and report the information to the Board. &nbsp;</p> <p>If you have any questions about this proposed law or how it may impact your agency, please contact the attorney authors of this legal alert listed to the right in the <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=487&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Special Districts</span></a>, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=497&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Public Finance</span></a>, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=489&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Municipal Law</span></a> or <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=492&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Environmental Law &amp; Natural Resources</span></a> practice groups, or your <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?p=2099"><font color="#0000ff">BB&amp;K attorney</font></a>.</p> <p><i>Disclaimer: BB&amp;K legal alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqu&eacute;.</i></p>Legal Alerts23 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41596&format=xmlHotels Need Not Provide Guest Registry to Law Enforcementhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41597&format=xml<p>Like a host of municipalities, the City of Los Angeles has an ordinance that requires hotel operators to record information about guests (aka, a guest registry) and to keep that information on premises for 90 days. The ordinance further requires a hotel operator to allow the police to inspect the register upon demand. Refusal to do so constitutes a misdemeanor offense.</p> <p>A group of hotel operators and a lodging association brought action in federal court asserting the ordinance was facially invalid under the Fourth Amendment based on their expectation of privacy in their own records. After that claim was rejected by the district court, the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed and found the ordinance was facially invalid. The U.S. Supreme Court granted review of that decision.</p> <p>In a 5-4 decision issued Monday in <a target="_blank" href="http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/13-1175_2qe4.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff"><i>City of Los Angeles v. Patel</i>,</span></a> the Supreme Court agreed with the Ninth Circuit and held that the City&rsquo;s ordinance was facially invalid under the Fourth Amendment. It is important to sort what the Court found invalid from what it held a government entity could lawfully enact and enforce, and how that process ought to proceed.</p> <p>First, the Court held that the City could require hotel operators to make and keep the records required by the ordinance, and could require hotel operators to provide access to these records to the police when requested. However, the Court held that the police can compel hotel operators to turn over these records only when the police have a proper administrative warrant, including one issued by the police, themselves.</p> <p>The Court explained that this kind of ordinance authorizes an &ldquo;administrative search&rdquo; &mdash; a search based on &ldquo;special needs&rdquo; outside the goal of the general interest in crime control. Once the ordinance is placed in the context of an &ldquo;administrative search,&rdquo; it is subject to the requirement of affording the hotel operators an opportunity to obtain precompliance review before a neutral decision maker. Because the Los Angeles ordinance failed to provide for such precomplinace review, it facially violated the Fourth Amendment.</p> <p>So, how would such precompliance review work in practice? The Court provided a road map. If an officer requests to review hotel registry records and that request is declined, the officer can issue an administrative subpoena right in the field. The warrant would not require the traditional showing of probable cause or even assert that the ordinance is being infringed. The officer would then serve the administrative warrant on the operator. If the operator refused to comply with the warrant by providing the records, &nbsp;the officer could seize and secure &mdash;&ldquo;guard&rdquo; &mdash;the records, if the officer had cause to believe the operator might tamper with the registry while review is sought and obtained. The operator would then seek expedited review of the administrative warrant before a neutral decision maker, likely an administrative law judge, who would simply determine whether the warrant is enforceable &mdash; that is, whether it was issued for a proper purpose consistent with the ordinance and not, for example, for purposes of harassing the operator.</p> <p>For more information about this decision and its impact on your organization, please contact one of the attorney authors of this legal alert listed at right in the <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=489&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Municipal Law practice group</span></a>, or your <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?p=2099"><span style="color: #0000ff">BB&amp;K attorney</span></a>.</p> <i>Disclaimer: BB&amp;K legal alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqu&eacute;.</i>Legal Alerts23 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41597&format=xmlAB 1825 Sexual Harassment Avoidance Training Webinar (June 23, 2015)http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38949&format=xml<div><br /> California's Fair Employment and Housing Act, pursuant to AB 1825, requires that employers with&nbsp;50 or more employees in California provide at least two hours of Sexual Harassment Avoidance Training every two years to any employee&nbsp;who has a supervisory role in operations. This presentation is designed to satisfy those requirements.<br /> <br /> Joseph Ortiz will present the training via a live webinar. The webinar is interactive, allowing attendees to ask questions.<br /> <br /> <p><strong>The webinar will cover:</strong></p> <ul type="disc"> <li>What constitutes sexual harassment or discrimination in the workplace</li> <li>How to recognize and avoid it</li> <li>What procedures to follow if you witness harassment or are harassed yourself</li> <li>The potential consequences - including personal liability - of sexual harassment</li> </ul> <p><strong><br /> Who should attend:</strong></p> <ul type="disc"> <li>Supervisors</li> <li>Human Resources Professionals</li> <li>Public Officials</li> <li>Managers &amp; Private Business Professionals with 50 or More Employees</li> </ul> <p><br /> <strong>When: <br /> <br /> </strong>June 23, 2015<br /> 9 - 11 a.m.&nbsp;PT</p> <p><br /> <strong>BB&amp;K Presenter:<br /> <br /> </strong>Joseph Ortiz, Partner, Labor &amp; Employment Practice Group in the Riverside office<br /> <strong><br /> <br /> Cost:</strong><br /> <br /> $75 per person<br /> <br /> Please provide payment before the training. Otherwise, you will not be able to join the webinar or receive a certificate of completion. Colleagues must register separately.<br /> <br /> <strong><br /> Registration:<br /> <br /> </strong>To register for this webinar, please click <span style="color: #0000ff"><strong><a target="_blank" href="https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1559305766182941698"><span style="color: #0000ff">here</span></a></strong></span>. <br /> <strong><br /> </strong><em><strong>Deadline for reigstration and payment is Friday, June, 19</strong></em><br /> <br /> <strong>Payment:<br /> </strong></p> <form method="post" action="https://www.cart32.com/cgi-bin/cart32.exe/BBK-AddItem"> <font size="+1"><b>AB 1825 Sexual Harassment Avoidance Training Webinar - June 23, 2015</b><br /> <input type="hidden" name="item" value="AB 1825 Sexual Harassment Avoidance Training Webinar - June 23, 2015" /> Qty: <input type="text" name="Qty" value="1" size="3" /> <b>Price: $75</b> <input type="hidden" name="Price" value="75" /> <br /> <br /> <input type="submit" value="Add to Shopping Cart" /> <strong><br /> <br /> QUESTIONS:<br /> <br /> </strong>Contact <a href="mailto:amanda.fine@bbklaw.com?subject=Do%20You%20Need%20to%20Fulfill%20Your%20AB%201825%20Harassment%20Training%20Requirement%3F"><span style="color: #0000ff">Events@BBKlaw.com</span></a> if you have any questions about this event and/or about BB&amp;K upcoming seminars/events.<br /> <br /> If you are not currently receiving our Legal Alerts and would like to be added to our email distribution list, please visit our <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?p=2121"><span style="color: rgb(0,0,255)">subscription page</span></a>.<br /> &nbsp; <p>&nbsp;</p> </font> </form> </div>Seminars and Webinars23 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38949&format=xmlWebinar: Negotiating in the Sharing Economyhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41573&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger attorney Jordan Ferguson presented the webinar &ldquo;Negotiating in the Sharing Economy.&rdquo; Now available for download, the presentation includes an insightful review of the business models of key players in the online vacation rental market (e.g. Airbnb and HomeAway), transportation network companies (e.g. Uber and Lyft) and meal sharing apps (e.g. Meal Sharing, EatWith and CookApp).</p> <p>This ground-breaking webinar continues with a discussion of the issues confronting each of the aforementioned sectors of the sharing economy. These challenges include:</p> <ul type="disc"> <li>Housing market issues, taxing issues, code enforcement issues, and policy enforcement issues in the case of online vacation rental companies</li> <li>Competition with the taxi industry, lack of regulations, and employee classification with respect to the transportation network companies.</li> <li>Limiting royalty payments to claims that would otherwise be infringed</li> <li>Zoning issues, business license issues, and health and safety issues relative to meal sharing apps</li> </ul> <p>The following are among the policy and negotiation issues discussed during the session:</p> <ul type="disc"> <li>To what extent can sharing companies straddle the different relevant regulatory bodies?</li> <li>How is the availability of insurance helping or hindering the scaling of sharing companies?</li> <li>How aggressive can sharing companies become in terms of bestowing gifts on regulators? In terms of tempting regulators with the possibility of career opportunities within their organizations?</li> <li>What legal requirements are placed on sharing companies with respect to complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act?</li> <li>How aggressive are State Attorney's&trade; General in demanding records of lodging hosts from online vacation rental operators? What level of resistance are they encountering?</li> <li>What penalties do lodging hosts stand to receive for violating local anti-sharing laws? What is the level of difficulty in identifying and charging such violators?</li> <li>To what extent do online vacation rental operators have standing to sue when they wish to challenge local laws?</li> <li>What market penetration strategies are sharing companies pursuing? What is the range of restrictions regulators are placing on such companies?</li> <li>How should sharing companies present themselves before regulators?</li> <li>Where does the Civil Rights Act intersect with the sharing economy?</li> <li>What are the implications of collect-and-remit and transient occupancy taxes?</li> </ul> <p>To order the webinar for the discounted price of $195, mention the code &ldquo;Friends of BB&amp;K&rdquo; when registering. To register, call (609) 919-1895 and ask for Neomi Barazani.</p> <p>For more information, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.instituteforstrategicnegotiations.com/negotiating_in_the_sharing_economy.php"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements22 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41573&format=xmlEn Banc Argument in Peruta Suggests Limitations on Concealed Carry May Survivehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41558&format=xml<p>Another update on the concealed-weapons permit case, <span style="color: #0000ff"><em><a target="_blank" href="http://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/content/view.php?pk_id=0000000722"><span style="color: #0000ff">Peruta v. County of San Diego</span></a></em></span><em>. T</em>he Ninth Circuit held en banc rehearing this week. Panel consisted of Chief Judge Thomas, and Judges Pregerson, Silverman, Graber, McKeown, Fletcher, Paez, Callahan, Bea, Smith, and Owens. Chief Judge Thomas dissented from the original three-judge panel opinion, authoried by Judge O&rsquo;Scannlain and joined by Judge Callahan.</p> <p>The video of argument is available on the <span style="color: #0000ff"><a target="_blank" href="http://www.ca9.uscourts.gov/media/view_video.php?pk_vid=0000007886"><span style="color: #0000ff">Ninth Circuit&rsquo;s website</span></a></span>. Several pointed questions from Judges seem to suggest skepticism about the three-judge panel&rsquo;s <a target="_blank" href="http://cdn.ca9.uscourts.gov/datastore/opinions/2014/02/13/10-56971%20web.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff">broad interpretation of the Second Amendement and <em>District of Columbia v. Heller</em></span></a>.</p> <p>Former Solicitor General <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bancroftpllc.com/professionals/paul-d-clement/"><span style="color: #0000ff">Paul Clement </span></a>argued for Peruta, fueling speculation that this case, whatever the outcome, is ripe for review by the Supreme Court.</p>Blogs19 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41558&format=xml2015 California Public Records & Open Meetings Conferencehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38931&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger attorneys Matthew (Mal) Richardson and Richard Egger are among the speakers at The State Bar of California Public Law Section&rsquo;s 2015 California Public Records &amp; Open Meeting Conference.</p> <p><u>BB&amp;K Speakers</u></p> <p><b>Mal Richardson</b>, &ldquo;Records Related to Public Business, But Not Controlled by Third Parties&rdquo;<br /> This session will track developing law regarding records related to public business, but controlled by third parties. This includes the use of private email accounts to conduct public business, as well as records relied upon by a public entity in conducting business, that are maintained by a third party, such as n investment firm.<br /> 3:30 &ndash; 4:40 p.m.</p> <p><b>Richard Egger</b>, &ldquo;Ethical Issues Related to Open Government Law&rdquo;<br /> This session will explore ethical issues arising from public entities&rsquo; obligations to provide public record access, including determining who your client is for purposes of attorney-client privilege and related third-party protection of confidential personal information held by agencies. Discussion will also include the potential waiver of any privileges caused by inadvertent PRA-document disclosures and the public attorney&rsquo;s potential ethical duty to third parties under this circumstance.<br /> 4:30 &ndash; 5:30 p.m.</p> <p>BB&amp;K is a sponsor of this event. MCLE Credit is available.</p> <p><strong>When<br /> </strong>Friday, June 19, 2015</p> <p><strong>Where</strong><br /> UCLA-Palisades Room at Carnesales Commons<br /> 251 Charles E. Young Dr. West<br /> Los Angeles, CA 90095</p> <p>For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="http://publiclaw.calbar.ca.gov/"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements19 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38931&format=xmlCalifornia Wage and Hour Lawshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41303&format=xmlBest Best &amp; Krieger Partner Joseph T. Ortiz will provide an overview of the most litigated California wage-and-hour laws. Joseph&nbsp; will review overtime issues, meal &amp; rest period compliance, calculation of hours worked, wage payment issues, best practices for timekeeping, and the potential penalties associated with failure to comply.<br /> <br /> <strong>When:</strong><br /> Thursday, June 18<br /> 7:45 - 9 a.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>Where: </strong><br /> Parkview Founders Center<br /> 3885 Jackson St.<br /> Riverside, Ca 92503<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="https://events.r20.constantcontact.com/register/eventReg?oeidk=a07eb1puom80b55addd&amp;oseq=&amp;c=&amp;ch"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements18 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41303&format=xmlNew California Paid Sick Leave Lawhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41304&format=xmlBest Best &amp; Krieger Partner Joseph T. Ortiz will host a workshop on California's new paid sick leave law at the Riverside Business Expo and Mixer. Joseph will offer attendess a look at the new law and discuss what it means for employers across the state.<br /> <br /> <strong>When:</strong><br /> Thursday, June 18<br /> 4:30 - 7:30 p.m.<br /> <br /> <strong>Where: </strong><br /> Riverside Convention Center<br /> 3637 5th Street<br /> Riverside, Ca 92501<br /> <br /> For more information <a target="_blank" href="http://countyofriverside.us/AbouttheCounty/CalendarofEvents/tabid/93/mid/515/itemid/559/ctl/Details/ShowNav/False/dnnprintmode/true/Default.aspx?SkinSrc=%5BG%5DSkins%2F_default%2FNo+Skin&amp;ContainerSrc=%5BG%5DContainers%2F_default%2FNo+Container"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.Conferences & Speaking Engagements18 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41304&format=xmlCalifornia's Highest Court Upholds San Jose's Affordable Housing Ordinancehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41487&format=xml<p>This week, in a long awaited decision, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/S212072.PDF"><span style="color: #0000ff"><i>California Building Industry Association v. City of San Jo</i>se</span></a>, the California Supreme Court upheld the City of San Jose&rsquo;s affordable housing ordinance. In doing so, the Court resoundingly held that the requirement to either construct affordable housing units or provide affordable housing through alternative means per the City&rsquo;s inclusionary housing ordinance is not an exaction. Instead, the Court held that such ordinances are permissible land use regulations derived from the police powers contained in the California Constitution. This distinction has been at issue between cities and the development industry for a number of years and it is finally settled law.</p> <p>The decision is important because it ultimately determines the level of Constitutional scrutiny a city needs to meet in adopting an affordable housing ordinance. If the California Supreme Court had determined such ordinances constituted exactions, a city would need to show that the requirements in the affordable housing ordinance were being imposed to negate any adverse public impacts caused by new housing development. The Court&rsquo;s decision, however, now means that a city need only show that it is adopting an affordable housing ordinance to promote the public welfare of the community &ndash; a much lower constitutional burden.</p> <p>The California Supreme Court&rsquo;s 2013 decision in <em>Sterling Park L.P. v. City of Palo Alto </em>seemed to indicate that the Court was prepared to hold that affordable housing requirements were exactions. In that case, the Court held that an affordable housing ordinance requiring a developer to sell units at a below market rate price and grant the City a purchase option for the affordable units was subject to the statute of limitations in the Mitigation Fee Act as an &ldquo;other exaction&rdquo; as that term is used in the Act. The California Supreme Court in the San Jose case, however, clarified that its holding in the Sterling Park case only addressed a procedural question regarding the appropriate statute of limitations for a challenge to the imposition of inclusionary housing requirements on a specific development, and did not address the substantive validity of an inclusionary housing ordinance.</p> <p>The San Jose ordinance, adopted in 2010, required developers proposing 20 or more for-sale residential units to set aside 15 percent of those units for sale to low or moderate income households. The ordinance provided a number of alternatives to this set-aside requirement, including construction of affordable units at another site, payment of an &ldquo;in lieu&rdquo; fee into the City&rsquo;s affordable housing fund, dedicating land to the City in equal value to the applicable in-lieu fee or acquiring and rehabilitating a comparable number of affordable units. Shortly after adopting the ordinance, San Jose was sued by the California Building Industry Association.</p> <p>For more information about this decision and its impact on your organization, please contact one of the attorney authors of this legal alert listed at right in the <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=489&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Municipal Law practice group</span></a>, or your <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?p=2099"><span style="color: #0000ff">BB&amp;K attorney</span></a>.</p> <p><em>Disclaimer: BB&amp;K legal alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqu&eacute;.</em></p>Legal Alerts17 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41487&format=xmlUber Driver Ruling Could Change Ride Sharinghttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41498&format=xml<p><b>By Ciaran McEvoy</b></p> <p>Uber, the ride-sharing company that upended the taxi business, is facing a huge change to its business model after the California Labor Commission ruled that a plaintiff driver is an employee.</p> <p>San Francisco-based Uber argued that its drivers, who can work whenever and wherever they please, are independent contractors. The company, valued at more than $40 billion in a recent round of financing, also contends that it's merely a technology enabling drivers and passengers to engage in the business of transportation.</p> <p>But these arguments fell on deaf ears before a labor commission officer who found that far from being a &quot;neutral technological platform,&quot; Uber instead was &quot;involved in every aspect of the operation.&quot;</p> <p>The decision, if upheld and emulated by other states, could affect Uber's plan to expand its service into shipping. It also could affect Amazon's (NASDAQ:AMZN) efforts for an Uber-like delivery service.</p> <p>&hellip;</p> <p>The commission's ruling is non-binding, and the courts aren't required to agree with it, noted Howard Golds, a partner at the California-based law firm of Best Best &amp; Krieger.</p> <p>&quot;Whether the (court) agrees with the labor commissioner is questionable,&quot; he said.</p> <p><i>To read the full article, posted on the Investor&rsquo;s Business Daily website on June 17, 2015, <a target="_blank" href="http://license.icopyright.net/user/viewFreeUse.act?fuid=MTk3MDMzNDg%3D"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here.</span></a></i></p>BB&K In The News17 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41498&format=xmlWorkplace: Law Calls for Anti-Abusive Conduct Workplace Traininghttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41568&format=xml<p><b>By Richard K. DeAtley</b></p> <p>One of the recent additions to California workplace laws requires addition of the prevention training for &ldquo;abusive conduct&rdquo; &ndash; bullying &ndash; to mandatory sexual harassment avoidance training.</p> <p>The law, AB2053, defines abusive conduct as that which &ldquo;a reasonable person would find hostile, offensive, and unrelated to an employer&rsquo;s legitimate business interests.&rdquo;</p> <p>&hellip;</p> <p>And there are no benchmarks in the law for the prevention training it requires, meaning attorneys and human resource experts who provide advice to businesses have been left to look at the law&rsquo;s definitions of bullying to cipher their advice for best practices.</p> <p>Despite the missing pieces, AB2053 has &ldquo;made employers more aware of this issue,&rdquo; said Alison Alpert , a partner for Best Best &amp; Krieger law firm and chair of its labor and employee practice group.</p> <p>&ldquo;I have been talking to businesses about bullying,&rdquo; she said. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a big problem in the workplace.&rdquo;</p> <p>She said one area of advice to clients has been to review existing company rules regarding office conduct.</p> <p>While those rules may not be as explicit as the law&rsquo;s description of bullying, &ldquo;they have some conduct guidelines about disrespectful treatment of co-workers or threatening or abusive conduct.&rdquo;</p> <p>And even if those actions are not actionable in court, Alpert said, their existence in company policy means workers and supervisors can be subject to discipline for violations.</p> <p>There also are concerns that the law can be used to cite bullying in cases of progressive discipline or performance improvement programs.</p> <p>&ldquo;What one person may perceive as bullying is actually a legitimate employee disciplinary action,&rdquo; Alpert said. &ldquo;It should not stop employers from taking reasonable action in the workplace.&rdquo;</p> <i>To read the full article, published in the Press-Enterprise on June 17, 2015, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.pe.com/articles/bullying-770748-law-conduct.html"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a></i>BB&K In The News17 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41568&format=xmlBest in Law: Does Your Business Need a Prenup?'http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41350&format=xml<p><b>By D. Brian Reider</b></p> <p>You are likely familiar with the news stories of this celebrity or that being involved in divorce proceedings where the language of a &ldquo;prenup&rdquo; is of great importance. You probably also know that the term is short for &ldquo;prenuptial,&rdquo; and refers to a contract entered into before marriage, with the intention that it govern who owns what assets, and how they will be divided upon divorce.</p> <p>But have you considered that, on much the same reasoning, business owners should also have their own form of a &ldquo;prenup&rdquo;?</p> <p>In fact, anytime two or more people come together to form a business, be it a partnership, limited liability company or a corporation, they are in effect &ldquo;getting married,&rdquo; and should also be thinking of having an agreement that will govern when the time comes for one or more of them to no longer be involved in the business.</p> <p>Typically called a &ldquo;buy-sell agreement,&rdquo; or just a &ldquo;buy-sell,&rdquo; such agreements are often the difference between a business relationship ending smoothly, or ending in contentious and expensive litigation.</p> <p>While their exact details will vary depending on the circumstances of a particular business relationship, almost every buy-sell involves the same general questions. First, what future events will trigger the provisions of the buy-sell? Most commonly, these will include at least the death, disability, divorce, bankruptcy, retirement or withdrawal of an owner. Whenever any of the trigger events occur, a process starts that gives either, or both, the company and the other owners the right to buy part or all of the ownership interest of the withdrawing owner.</p> <p>Second, the buy-sell governs what the withdrawing owner (or their heirs) will be paid for their ownership interest. Again, multiple methods can be used. Some owners like to meet annually and agree upon the value of the company, and therefore the value of their ownership interests. Others prefer to apply preset accounting formulas and protocols, such as book value, liquidation value or discounted cash flow formulas. Still others also look to apply minority or marketability discounts. These are discounts which may reduce the value of an ownership interest because it is not a controlling interest or because, for some other reason, a buyer would not pay full price for the interest. There are also those who prefer to have one or more neutral business appraisers set the value at the time the trigger event occurs.</p> <p>Regardless of the method used for valuation, once the value is set, then the questions are: who buys the interest, and is the purchase mandatory or optional? The variations include the business itself buying back the interest (if it legally can), or for the other owner or owners to buy the interest. There may also be the possibility of only a part of the withdrawing owner&rsquo;s interest being purchased.</p> <p>Depending on the value of the withdrawing owner&rsquo;s interest, another vexing problem can often be to decide how the purchase is to be funded. Here, there are most commonly three approaches. The easiest is an outright cash purchase, but that is often not practical because of the amount involved. In many cases, the owners agree to pay for the withdrawing owner&rsquo;s interest by financing it with a down payment, and</p> <p>then installment payments being made over a fixed number of years. Finally, where the parties are insurable, life insurance can be purchased by either the company or the owners that will fund the purchase, at least on the death of the withdrawing owner (but this leaves many scenarios where such life insurance would not be available).</p> <p>When a trigger event occurs, if all of the processes have been agreed to in advance, the buy-sell can then be mechanically applied to accomplish the buyout in an orderly fashion. The business can continue without interruption and excessively negative cash-flow consequences. The discussions about a buy-sell can be difficult, and absolutely need the involvement of competent counsel, an accountant and perhaps other financial advisers.</p> <p><i>* This article first appeared in <a target="_blank" href="http://www.pe.com/articles/business-768914-interest-buy.html"><span style="color: #0000ff">The Press-Enterprise</span></a> on June 3, 2015. Republished with permission.</i></p>BB&K In The News16 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41350&format=xmlCalifornia Water Law & Policyhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38936&format=xml<p>It's official. The drought continues.</p> <p>But 2015 is very different from 2014: Gov. Jerry Brown has ordered sweeping new requirements for urban and agricultural water conservation; the State Water Resources Control Board has reduced water diversions via water right curtailment orders and rulemakings; the Water Bond has passed and in this new era of intense, &quot;mega-drought,&quot; everyone is looking at water reuse, recycling, and desalination to help bridge the gap between frighteningly low water availability and ever-increasing water demand.</p> <p>With these and other topics in mind, Argent Communications is presenting a two-day conference California Water Law &amp; Policy, co-chaired by BB&amp;K Partner Steven Anderson. BB&amp;K attorneys Andre Monette, Kelly Salt and Roderick Walston are also speaking at the conference, which is co-sponsored by the firm.</p> <p>This informative, practice-oriented two-day event is a must-attend for anyone who needs to understand California's complex water issues. Whether you're an attorney, water district staff or board member, federal or state government practitioner, consulting engineer, city or county counsel or planner, environmental organization representative, developer or agricultural business owner, you'll get the latest detailed updates on these and other crucial and complex issues.<br /> <b><i><br /> Mention BB&amp;K when registering and receive $100 off the tuition price.</i></b></p> <p><u>BB&amp;K Speakers</u></p> <p><b>Steve Anderson</b>, Conference Overview<br /> Monday, June 15, 8:30 a.m.<br /> Tuesday, June 16, 8:30 a.m.</p> <p><b>Andre Monette</b>, &ldquo;Water Quality Control and Drought: The Legal Aspects of Stormwater Capture and Use&rdquo;<br /> Monday, June 15, 1:30 p.m.</p> <p><b>Kelly Salt</b>, &ldquo;Prop. 218: The Future of Tiered Conservation Rates (San Juan Capistrano Case):<br /> Monday, June 15, 3:45 p.m.</p> <p><b>Roderick Walston</b>, &ldquo;Developing Groundwater Disputes: A Closer Look &mdash; Does the Reserved Rights Doctrine Apply to Groundwater? The Agua Caliente Case&rdquo;<br /> Tuesday, June 16, 10:15 a.m.</p> <p><strong>When</strong><br /> Monday, June 15 &ndash; Tuesday, June 16, 2015</p> <p><strong>Where</strong><br /> Hotel Nikko San Francisco<br /> <a target="_blank" href="http://images.magnetmail.net/images/clients/ARGENT/attach/2015CWLBrochure.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff">Click here</span></a> for more information</p> <p>To register, <a target="_blank" href="https://www.registrationheadquarters.com/events/?da5124fee1c34386ad493ed9a7fad8c4a&amp;mmurlid=72082185"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a></p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements15 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38936&format=xmlThe Administrative & Public Environmental Law Conferencehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39300&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger Managing Partner Eric Garner and Of Counsel Sara Owsowitz will be speaking at The Administrative &amp; Public Environmental Law Conference, co-presented by The State Bar of California Public and Environmental law sections. BB&amp;K is a sponsor if of the one-day conference.</p> <p><u>BB&amp;K Speakers</u></p> <p><b>Sarah Owsowitz</b>, &ldquo;Preparing the CEQA Administrative Record&rdquo;<br /> 11:10 a.m. &ndash; 12:25 p.m.<br /> What goes into (and what stays out of) the administrative record prepared in California Environmental Quality Act litigation is one of the most difficult and controversial topics facing practitioners. What is required? What may be excluded? What is privileged? What about emails? What if a Public Records Act request is filed concurrently? Who pays for it all? Panelists will also provide advice on the use of joint defense agreements to maintain privileges between agency and applicant counsel communications involving scoping potential mitigation measures and responding to comments. This session will address recent case law answering these questions and provide practical tips for compliance.</p> <p><b>Eric Garner</b>, &ldquo;The Effects of California's Drought on Public Entities&rdquo;<br /> 3:15 &ndash; 4:45 p.m.<br /> This session will focus on legislative and regulatory developments resulting from California's long-standing drought, including from the state and local water boards and local entities. Panelists will provide advice and discuss the enforcement of programs to limit watering, diversions and code enforcement. The session will also address current water law rights and usage priorities, including the State's recent assumption of jurisdiction over groundwater rights and any anticipated changes to these laws.</p> <p><strong>When</strong><br /> Friday, June 12, 2015</p> <p><strong>Where</strong><br /> UC Hastings College of the Law<br /> San Francisco</p> <p>For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="http://publiclaw.calbar.ca.gov/Education/TheAdministrativePublicEnvironmentalLawConf.aspx#sched"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements12 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39300&format=xmlUnderstanding the 4 Ps Before the P3 (Public-Private Partnership)http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41290&format=xml<p><b>By Seth Merewitz</b></p> <p>When Edmund G. &ldquo;Pat&rdquo; Brown, Sr. was the governor of California (1959 to 1967), major infrastructure projects were being constructed throughout the state. Today, under Governor Jerry Brown, communities are struggling to fund needed capital expenditures and required upgrades from new state and federal regulations.</p> <p>New infrastructure investment is falling further and further behind the needs of our local communities. Aging and inadequate infrastructure, required upgrades and scarce public financial resources to pay for construction of new facilities is fostering a new spirit of innovation &mdash; out of necessity, rather than desire. We can do better!</p> <p>Public-private partnership (P3) is a tool that is being considered and implemented in California and elsewhere for economic development, real estate asset monetization and regional- and local-serving infrastructure. The P3 term can refer to any or all of the following: procurement, project delivery (including design, construction, operation, maintenance or any portion of project delivery), a method of financing or mechanism for risk transfer.</p> <p><i>To read the full article in the May-June 2015 edition of California Special District magazine, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/88E17A/assets/files/documents/BBK-LA-CSDA-P3-Merewitz.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>. Reprinted with permission.</i></p>BB&K In The News12 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41290&format=xmlFour BB&K Attorneys Named to 2015 Southern California Super Lawyers Rising Stars Listhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41294&format=xml<p><b>Riverside, Calif.</b>&nbsp;- BB&amp;K is pleased to announce that four of the firm&rsquo;s attorneys were included in the 2015 Southern California <i>Super Lawyers Rising Stars </i>list. Each year, no more than 2.5 percent of the lawyers in the state are selected by the research team at Super Lawyers for this honor. To&nbsp;be selected&nbsp;as a Rising Star, the attorney must be under age 40 or in practice for less than 10 years, and must have demonstrated significant achievements in their pracitce area.</p> <p>The BB&amp;K lawyers named as Rising Stars are:</p> <ul> <li>Scott Ditfurth, Business Litigation, Riverside</li> <li>Matthew &ldquo;Mal&rdquo; Richardson, Government, Irvine</li> <li>Isabel Safie, Employee Benefits, Riverside</li> <li>Alisha Winterswyk, Environmental, Irvine</li> </ul> <p>Super Lawyers is a rating service of outstanding lawyers from more than 70 practice areas who have attained a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement. The annual selections are made using a process that includes a statewide survey of lawyers, an independent research evaluation of candidates and peer reviews by practice area. The result is a credible, comprehensive and diverse listing of exceptional attorneys. For more information, visit <a target="_blank" href="http://www.superlawyers.com/index.html"><span style="color: #0000ff">SuperLawyers.com</span></a>.</p>Press Releases12 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41294&format=xmlMarketing Coordinator - Riverside Or Irvine Officehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=1714&format=xml<p>The Marketing Coordinator supports the Marketing team, reporting to the Director of Marketing, with a variety of duties designed to make the team function more efficiently and effectively. Successful candidates must be able to work independently, possess good communications skills and excellent judgment.&nbsp; Strong editing and proofreading skills required.&nbsp; Bachelor&rsquo;s degree in marketing, communications, public relations or similar is preferred.&nbsp; WordPress blog/website platform, Web/html, PowerPoint, InDesign and Illustrator a plus.<br /> <br /> Qualified applicants are invited to apply online by clicking the link below. Applicants must attach a resume and cover letter to be considered for employment. This self-apply feature is compatible with Internet Explorer 6, 7, 8 &amp; 9, Mozilla Firefox for Windows, or Safari for Macintosh.<br /> <br /> <a target="_blank" href="https://lawcruit.micronapps.com/sup/lc_supp_jobpost.aspx?%40Pl3%3cKWEX%40=2%3e4&amp;%3db8=%3a%40%3bA">lawcruit.micronapps.com/sup/lc_supp_jobpost.aspx</a></p> <p>Please address cover letters to:</p> <p><strong>Debbie A. Prior<br /> </strong><em>Director of Human Resources<br /> </em>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP<br /> 500 Capitol Mall, Suite 1700<br /> Sacramento, CA 95814<br /> <br /> <strong><em>No phone calls please<br /> <br /> Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP is an Equal Opportunity Employer.</em></strong></p>Job Openings at BB&K09 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=1714&format=xmlBB&K Associate Jake Vollebregt Recognized as an Emergent Young Leader by ULIhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41184&format=xml<p><b>IRVINE, Calif</b>. - Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP congratulates Associate Jake Vollebregt for being named a Young Leader by the Urban Land Institute Orange County/Inland Empire District Council, which honored him with an Emergent Leadership Award during a ceremony on Thursday evening at the Newport Beach Civic Center. The ULI district council&rsquo;s Young Leaders Group recognizes professionals in the real estate industry who have proven to be motivated, dedicated and inventive. &ldquo;It is important to highlight the most outstanding local emerging leaders whose contributions to their company and ULI make it clear that they lead by example,&rdquo; according to ULI.</p> <p>Vollebregt, who works out of BB&amp;K&rsquo;s Irvine office, advises both public entities and developers on land use approvals and entitlement due diligence and applications. His practice focuses on public law, land use and municipal code enforcement litigation, and he serves deputy city attorney and deputy agency counsel for several cities, special districts and other government entities in Southern California.</p> <p>Prior to joining BB&amp;K, Vollebregt served as a judge advocate in the U.S. Marine Corps. He received his law degree with a certificate in taxation from the Fowler School of Law at Chapman University. He is an Orange County native, and still resides there with his wife and two children.</p> <p>Read the Young Leader Spotlight Q&amp;A with Vollebregt by <a target="_blank" href="http://orangecounty.uli.org/young-leaders/ylg-spotlight/"><span style="color: #0000ff">clicking here</span></a>, and learn more about the Emergent Leadership Awards by <a target="_blank" href="http://orangecounty.uli.org/event/ylg-emergent-leadership-awards-2/"><span style="color: #0000ff">clicking here</span></a>.<br /> &nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center">###<br /> &nbsp;</p> <p><b><i>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP </i></b><em>is a national law firm that focuses on environmental, business, education, municipal and telecommunications law for public agency and private clients. With 200 attorneys, the law firm has nine offices nationwide, including Los Angeles, Walnut Creek, Sacramento, San Diego and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit </em><span style="color: #0000ff"><i><a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/"><span style="color: #0000ff"><em>www.bbklaw.com</em></span></a></i></span><i><em> or follow <a href="https://twitter.com/BBKlaw"><span style="color: #0000ff">@BBKlaw</span></a> on Twitter.</em></i></p>Press Releases08 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41184&format=xmlBB&K Ranked One of Country's 350 Largest Law Firms by National Law Journalhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41188&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger is pleased to announce that it is once again included on the 2015 <i>National Law Journal </i>350. The annual survey of the nation&rsquo;s largest law firms placed BB&amp;K in the 221st spot &mdash; advancing six slots from last year&rsquo;s survey. With 180 attorneys at the close of 2014, compared to 176 at the end of 2014, BB&amp;K&rsquo;s headcount and hiring habits are on par with the other law firms on the list.</p> <p>Read more about the 2015 NLJ 350 by <a target="_blank" href="http://www.nationallawjournal.com/home/id=1202728596494?kw=The%202015%20NLJ%20350&amp;et=editorial&amp;bu=National%20Law%20Journal&amp;cn=20150608&amp;src=EMC-Email&amp;pt=Daily%20Headlines&amp;slreturn=20150508130541"><span style="color: #0000ff">clicking here</span></a>.</p> <p style="text-align: center">###</p> <p><b><i>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP </i></b><i>is a national law firm that focuses on environmental, business, education, municipal and telecommunications law for public agency and private clients. With 200 attorneys, the law firm has nine offices nationwide, including Los Angeles, Walnut Creek, Sacramento, San Diego and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/"><span style="color: #0000ff">www.bbklaw.com</span></a>&nbsp;or follow <a target="_blank" href="http://www.twitter.com/bbklaw"><span style="color: #0000ff">@BBKlaw</span></a> on Twitter.</i></p>Press Releases08 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41188&format=xmlLitigation Associate - Ontario Officehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=37860&format=xml<p><span style="font-size: medium"><span style="font-family: Arial">We have an immediate opening for an associate with 2 to 4 years of litigation experience.</span></span></p> <p><span style="font-size: medium"><span style="font-family: Arial">Qualified applicants are invited to apply online by clicking the link below. Applicants must attach a resume, transcript and cover letter to be considered for employment. This self-apply feature is compatible with Internet Explorer 6, 7, 8 &amp; 9, Mozilla Firefox for Windows, or Safari for Macintosh.<br /> <br /> </span></span><a target="_blank" href="https://lawcruit.micronapps.com/sup/lc_supp_jobpost.aspx?%40Pl3%3cKWEX%40=2%3e4&amp;%3db8=8_CG"><span style="font-size: medium"><span style="font-family: Arial">lawcruit.micronapps.com/sup/lc_supp_jobpost.aspx</span></span></a></p> <p><span style="font-size: medium"><span style="font-family: Arial">Please address your cover letter to:<br /> <br /> <strong>Jill N. Willis<br /> </strong><em>Chief Talent Officer<br /> </em>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP<br /> 300 South Grand Avenue, 25th Floor<br /> Los Angeles, CA 90071<br /> <em><br /> <strong><em><strong>No phone calls or emails&nbsp;please</strong></em><br /> <br /> <b><i>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP is an Equal Opportunity Employer.</i></b></strong></em></span></span></p>Job Openings at BB&K08 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=37860&format=xmlTransactional Tax/Business Associate - Riverside Officehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41067&format=xml<p><span style="font-size: medium">We are seeking an associate with 3 to 5 years of experience in tax, corporate &amp; partnership matters, mergers &amp; acquisitions and related document drafting. Strong research and analytical skills are essential. &nbsp;LL.M. in Taxation preferred.&nbsp; </span></p> <span style="font-size: medium"><span style="font-family: Arial">Qualified applicants are invited to apply online by clicking the link below. Applicants must attach a resume, transcript and cover letter to be considered for employment. This self-apply feature is compatible with Internet Explorer 6, 7, 8 &amp; 9, Mozilla Firefox for Windows, or Safari for Macintosh.</span></span><span style="font-size: medium"> <p><a href="https://lawcruit.micronapps.com/sup/lc_supp_jobpost.aspx?%40Pl3%3cKWEX%40=2%3e4&amp;%3db8=8_CG" target="_blank"><span style="font-size: medium"><span style="font-family: Arial">lawcruit.micronapps.com/sup/lc_supp_jobpost.aspx</span></span></a></p> </span><span style="font-size: medium"> <p><span style="font-family: Arial">Please address your cover letter to:</span></p> </span><span> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p><span style="font-size: medium"><span style="font-family: Arial"><strong>Jill N. Willis<br /> </strong><em>Chief Talent Officer<br /> </em>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP<br /> 300 South Grand Avenue, 25th Floor<br /> Los Angeles, CA 90071<br /> <br /> <em><strong>No phone calls or emails please</strong></em><br /> <br /> <b><i>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP is an Equal Opportunity Employer.</i></b></span></span></p> </span><br /> <span id="1433435945468E" style="display: none">&nbsp;</span>Job Openings at BB&K04 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41067&format=xmlCity's Revenue Transfer From its Wastewater Utility to its General Fund Is Justifiedhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41071&format=xml<p>In a challenge to the transfer of revenues from a city&rsquo;s wastewater utility to its general fund, a California Appellate Court held Tuesday that the transfer did not violate California Constitution article XIII D, section 6(b) (commonly known as Proposition 218). The court found the city&rsquo;s method of determining how much revenue should be transferred was reasonable and justified by its cost of service study. The court further found that, based on the evidence at trial, the city&rsquo;s use of the revenues was proper under Proposition 218.</p> <p>In <a target="_blank" href="http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/D066670.PDF"><span style="color: #0000ff"><i>Moore v. City of Lemon Grove</i></span></a>, a wastewater customer challenged Lemon Grove&rsquo;s annual transfer of revenues from its wastewater utility to its general fund. The City&rsquo;s utility has three employees who exclusively perform work for the utility. All other functions to operate the utility (accounting and finance, receptionists, analysts, engineers, inspectors, plan checkers, etc.) are performed by city employees. The plaintiff alleged that the utility transfers were not tied to actual costs incurred for the utility&rsquo;s benefit, and that the City failed to properly identify, earmark or quantify these costs. The plaintiff asserted that the transferred funds were used for general governmental purposes of the City in violation of Proposition 218. The court disagreed.</p> <p>The City presented evidence at trial showing that most of the functions required to operate the utility are provided by City employees who divide their time among various activities. In return, the utility reimburses the City for these services and expenses related to these services. The apportionment of time related to services provided to the utility were done in accordance with the City&rsquo;s best estimate of the actual time spent on sanitation matters by City employees. Overhead-related expenses were determined by examining the budgeted expenditures for each fund or activity. The City also provided evidence showing that, after the wastewater rates are established, the City monitors expenditures to make certain that City employees stay within budgetary parameters; resultant adjustments to personnel allocations are made where necessary.</p> <p>The City explained that the utility&rsquo;s revenues are specifically tied to expenditures through its five-year wastewater rate study. The rate study averages out costs over a five-year period and then determines the revenue required to cover these charges from year to year. The Court of Appeal agreed with the trial court that the evidence showed that apportioning costs based on revenues was reasonable under the circumstances and met the City&rsquo;s burden of demonstrating compliance with the requirements of Proposition 218.</p> <p>If you have any questions about this case or how it may impact your agency, please contact the attorney authors of this legal alert listed to the right in the firm&rsquo;s <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=497&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Public Finance</span></a>&nbsp;and <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=489&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Municipal Law</span></a> practice groups, or your <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?p=2099"><span style="color: #0000ff">BB&amp;K attorney</span></a>.</p> <p><i>Disclaimer: BB&amp;K legal alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqu&eacute;.</i></p>Legal Alerts04 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41071&format=xmlUber, Upstarts Force Regulators to Reconsider Ruleshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41006&format=xml<p><b>By Ciaran McEvoy</b></p> <p>It's a golden age of convenience for consumers ordering transportation, lodging, groceries and even massages from the comfort of wherever they choose with their mobile devices.</p> <p>But the on-demand or &quot;sharing&quot; economy has forced established businesses, lawyers and regulators to adjust.</p> <p>Sometimes, the upstart techs have to do the adjusting.</p> <p>Among the issues common to many disruptive technologies is whether their staffs are employees or independent contractors, a question well established in the U.S. since the New Deal. But the disruptive techs are building pressure for a new hybrid &mdash; dependent contractors.</p> <p>Drivers for ride-hailing companies Uber and Lyft, which list them as independent contractors, are seeking to be recognized as employees. Although ride-sharing drivers choose when and where they want to work &mdash; like independent contractors do &mdash; their continued work with Uber and Lyft is based on customer reviews. Their charge to customers is set by the companies.</p> <p>&quot;If they were really independent contractors, you'd see variations in prices, but you don't,&quot; said Jordan Ferguson, a lawyer at Best Best &amp; Krieger, a law firm that advises cities that regulate taxis and grapple with the disruptive upstarts.</p> <p>&hellip;</p> <p><i>To read the entire article, published on June 1, 2015 by Investor&rsquo;s Business Daily, <a target="_blank" href="http://news.investors.com/technology/060115-755101-regulators-scramble-to-catch-up-with-uber.htm?ven=rss"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</i></p>BB&K In The News01 Jun 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=41006&format=xmlPublic Law Attorney Janet Coleson Joins Best Best & Kriegerhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39395&format=xml<b>WALNUT CREEK, Calif.&nbsp;-</b> Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP is pleased to welcome Janet Coleson, Katherine Wisinski and Benjamin Lee to the Municipal Law practice group. Both Coleson and Wisinski come to BB&amp;K from Richards Watson and Gershon. Coleson was a shareholder there and Wisinski a senior counsel. They are joining Lee, who started last month. <p align="justify">Coleson is city attorney for the City of Pleasant Hill, town attorney for the Town of Fairfax and general counsel for the Marin/Sonoma Mosquito and Vector Control District. She has served as city attorney for the City of El Cerrito and provided special counsel services to the cities of Fremont, Vallejo and East Palo Alto. Prior to attending law school, she was an environmental and land use planner for the cities of New York and El Segundo. She is a member of the American Planning Association and maintains certification with the American Institute of Certified Planners. She received her law degree from the University of Colorado School of Law.</p> <p align="justify">Wisinski serves as the assistant city attorney for Pleasant Hill and the assistant town attorney for Fairfax. She previously served in-house as an assistant city attorney for the City of Walnut Creek, as well as a deputy city attorney for the City of Concord. She earned her law degree at the University of California, Hastings College of the Law.</p> <p align="left">Lee joins BB&amp;K from Olson Hagel &amp; Fishburn in Sacramento, where he worked as litigation associate with a focus on public law. He helped represent the California State Senate, the County of Los Angeles and numerous elected and appointed local government officials in trial court and agency enforcement proceedings. Following graduation from the University of Virginia School of Law, Lee served as an assistant attorney general with the District of Columbia Office of the Attorney General. While in law school, Lee served as a judicial intern with Judge Seon-Ki Park on the United Nations International Tribunal for Rwanda and worked as a summer law clerk with the United States House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce, Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.</p> <p align="left">&quot;Janet, Katy and Ben will be great additions to our Bay Area Municipal Law practice,&quot; said Jeff Ballinger, head of BB&amp;K&rsquo;s Municipal Law practice group. &quot;Our public agency clients in the region will benefit from their depth of experience and knowledge of issues unique to the area.&quot;</p> <p align="left">&quot;We welcome Janet, Katy and Ben to our Walnut Creek office and are excited to work with each of them,&quot; added Gene Tanaka, the Walnut Creek office managing partner.</p> <dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><dir><font size="3"> <p align="left">###</p> </font></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir></dir><i> <p align="left">&nbsp;<b><i>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP </i></b><em>is a national law firm that focuses on environmental, business, education, municipal and telecommunications law for public agency and private clients. With 200 attorneys, the law firm has nine offices nationwide, including Los Angeles, Walnut Creek, Sacramento, San Diego and Washington, D.C. For more information, visit </em><a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/"><span style="color: #0000ff"><em>www.bbklaw.com</em></span></a><em> or follow @BBKlaw on Twitter.</em></p> <p align="left">&nbsp;</p> <p align="left">&nbsp;</p> </i>Press Releases29 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39395&format=xmlTelecom Associate - DC Officehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40602&format=xml<p><span style="font-family: Arial"><span style="font-size: medium"><span style="mso-fareast-font-family: Calibri; mso-fareast-theme-font: minor-latin; mso-bidi-font-family: &quot;Times New Roman&quot;; mso-ansi-language: EN-US; mso-fareast-language: EN-US; mso-bidi-language: AR-SA">We have an immediate opening for an associate with 2-4 years of transactional and litigation experience in telecommunications law, including appellate matters. Our clients are mainly local governments, schools and public agencies in their roles as regulators, infrastructure owners and market participants. Position involves working closely with clients to: research and write briefs before lower courts and courts of appeal; prepare and file comments with the Federal Communications Commission; develop policy papers and positions on communications issues affecting local governments; draft ordinances governing use of rights of way and governing land use by communications providers (including wireless facilities providers); and draft agreements and franchises with communications and cable companies.</span><br /> <br /> </span></span><span style="font-family: Arial"><span style="font-size: medium">Qualified applicants are invited to apply online by clicking the link below. Applicants must attach a resume, transcript and cover letter to be considered for employment. This self-apply feature is compatible with Internet Explorer 6, 7, 8 &amp; 9, Mozilla Firefox for Windows, or Safari for Macintosh.</span></span></p> <span style="font-size: medium"> <p><a target="_blank" href="https://lawcruit.micronapps.com/sup/lc_supp_jobpost.aspx?%40Pl3%3cKWEX%40=2%3e4&amp;%3db8=8_CG"><span style="font-family: Arial">lawcruit.micronapps.com/sup/lc_supp_jobpost.aspx</span></a></p> </span><span> <p><span style="font-size: medium"><span style="font-family: Arial">Please address your cover letter to:</span></span></p> <p><span style="font-size: medium"><span style="font-family: Arial"><strong>Jill N. Willis<br /> </strong><em>Chief Talent Officer<br /> </em>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP<br /> 300 South Grand Avenue, 25th Floor<br /> Los Angeles, CA 90071<br /> <br /> <em><strong>No phone calls or emails please</strong></em><br /> <br /> <b><i>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP is an Equal Opportunity Employer.</i></b></span></span></p> </span>Job Openings at BB&K28 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40602&format=xmlHow to Avoid Brown Act Violations When Discussing Litigation Issueshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40623&format=xml<p><b>By Victoria Hester</b></p> <p>A nearly $400,000 severance deal struck between Pasadena Community College and its former president was nullified by a judge after determining that the deal was improperly discussed and finalized in closed session. A Los Angeles Superior Court judge recently found that the Pasadena Community College Board of Trustees violated the Brown Act. The Brown Act, California&rsquo;s open meeting law, generally requires that meetings of legislative bodies be open to the public.</p> <p>A nonprofit group, Californians Aware, filed the lawsuit against the college, claiming that the board violated the Brown Act by finalizing the former president&rsquo;s severance package in two closed sessions rather than in public meetings. The college claimed that a dispute with the former president had matured into potential litigation, and that the two closed sessions, held on July 22 and Aug. 6, qualified as &ldquo;conferences with legal counsel regarding anticipated litigation,&rdquo; and were exempt from the Brown Act&rsquo;s open meeting requirement.</p> <p><b>What the Brown Act Says about Litigation</b></p> <p>The Brown Act allows a legislative body to hold a closed session to &ldquo;confer with, or receive advice from, its legal counsel regarding pending litigation when discussion in open session concerning those matters would prejudice the position of the local agency in the litigation.&rdquo; Litigation is considered pending not only when a lawsuit has been formally initiated, but also when &ldquo;based on existing facts and circumstances, there is a significant exposure to litigation against the local agency.&rdquo;</p> <p>The Brown Act requires that when the facts and circumstances that may give rise to litigation are known to the potential plaintiff, they must be disclosed on the agenda or publicly announced. In the Pasadena Community College case, the facts and circumstances surrounding the anticipated litigation were not included on the college&rsquo;s agendas and were not publicly announced. Both closed session agenda items noted only that the sessions were closed due to conference with legal counsel regarding anticipation of litigation.</p> <p>The judge held that, although the severance package did qualify as a litigation settlement, because the college failed to announce or include on the agenda the facts and circumstances of the anticipated litigation, the college violated the Brown Act. The college and former president were given 90 days to &ldquo;unwind&rdquo; the agreement and revisit settlement negotiations, should they wish to do so, in compliance with the Brown Act.</p> <p><b>What should agencies do?</b></p> <p>Local agencies should remember that generally, the Brown Act requires meetings of governmental bodies to be open to the public. Under certain circumstances the legislative body can convene in closed session &ldquo;to confer with, or receive advice from, its legal counsel regarding pending litigation when discussion in open session concerning those matters would prejudice the position of the local agency in the litigation.&rdquo;</p> <p>&ldquo;Litigation&rdquo; includes: Any adjudicatory proceeding, including eminent domain, before a court, administrative body exercising its adjudicatory authority, hearing officer, or arbitrator.</p> <p>If a legislative body wants to convene in closed session to discuss pending litigation, it must state on the agenda or publicly announce the paragraph of subdivision that authorizes the closed session.</p> <p>There is no need to disclose &ldquo;facts and circumstances&rdquo; that might result in litigation against the local agency, as long as the agency believes the facts and circumstances are not yet known to potential plaintiffs.&nbsp; Facts and circumstances including an accident, disaster, incident, etc. that might result in litigation and are known to the potential plaintiffs must be disclosed, either stated on the agenda or publicly announced.</p> <p><b>The Public Right to Know</b></p> <p>Receipt of a claim under the Government Claims Act, or some other written communication from a potential plaintiff threatening litigation, must be available for public inspection.&nbsp; A statement by a person in an open and public meeting threatening litigation on a specific matter does not need to&nbsp; be disclosed because it is a public statement.&nbsp; If a statement threatening litigation is made by a person outside of an open and public meeting on a specific matter, of which an official or employee of the agency makes a record, then the record must be made available for public inspection.</p> <p>It is important to note that none of these rules require disclosure of written communications that are privileged and not subject to disclosure under the California Public Records Act.</p> <p>The Brown Act was established to keep the business of public agencies open and transparent. If you are unsure how to proceed, it is best to discuss the specific situation with legal counsel. While litigation should always be carefully and thoughtfully discussed, it is also important to weigh the public&rsquo;s right to know.</p> <p><i>This article first appeared on <a href="http://www.publicceo.com/2015/05/how-to-avoid-brown-act-violations-when-discussing-litigation-issues/" target="_blank"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">PublicCEO.com</span></a> on May 28, 2015. Republished with permission. </i></p>BB&K In The News28 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40623&format=xmlBB&K Police Bulletin: Arresting Armed, Mentally Ill Suspectshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40318&format=xml<p><b>Overview: </b>The United States Supreme Court found that two police officers were immune from liability under 42 U.S.C. section 1983 even if the officers failed to accommodate the disability of a mentally ill person who was acting dangerously and uncooperatively. However, the Court did not address whether law enforcement officers are required, under the Americans with Disabilities Act, to provide accommodations to armed, violent and mentally ill suspects in the course of arrest.</p> <p><b>Training Points: </b>By upholding qualified immunity in such situations, this ruling provides a measure of security to police officers, who may be forced to act decisively when confronted with armed and dangerous individuals who suffer from mental disabilities. It should be noted, however, that this holding is limited to specific facts involving confrontations with mentally ill persons who are acting violently and dangerously. Other factual scenarios where officers&rsquo; duties are clearly established may still result in personal liability. Officers should follow their departmental policies and procedures on use of force and should continue to consider the totality of the circumstances when faced with an armed and dangerous individual.</p> <p>The extent to which the ADA applies in these circumstances remains an open question. From a practical standpoint, this case likely will not affect the procedures and training that departments utilize to prepare for these situations.</p> <p><b>Summary Analysis: </b>In <a target="_blank" href="http://www.scotusblog.com/case-files/cases/city-and-county-of-san-francisco-california-v-sheehan/"><span style="color: #0000ff"><i>City and County of San Francisco v. Sheehan</i></span></a><i>,</i> a woman who lived in a group home for mentally disabled persons was arrested after she threatened her social worker with a knife and barricaded herself in her room. When two police officers arrived and entered her room, she threatened the officers with the knife. The officers, concerned that she would flee or injure herself, forcibly reentered the room, sprayed Sheehan with pepper spray and, when she continued to approach them with a knife, shot her several times.</p> <p>Sheehan sought damages for her injuries against the two officers under section 1983 based on allegations the officers violated the ADA by failing to accommodate her mental disability.&nbsp;&nbsp;Under section 1983, police officers are immune from suit unless they violate a &ldquo;clearly established&rdquo; statutory or constitutional right. The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals found the officers could have provided an accommodation by &ldquo;respect[ing]&nbsp;[Sheehan&rsquo;s] comfort zone, engag[ing] in non-threatening communications and us[ing] the passage of time to defuse the situation rather than precipitating a deadly confrontation.&rdquo; &nbsp;The Supreme Court reversed, holding that officers&rsquo; duties in such situations are <i>not</i> clearly established &mdash; competent officers could have believed that reentry into the room was justified under the circumstances.</p> <p>The Supreme Court did not address the underlying issue &ndash; whether the ADA requires law enforcement officers to provide accommodations to an armed, violent and mentally ill suspect in the course of taking&nbsp;a suspect into custody. Though the Court had planned to determine this issue &ndash; where there is a split in authority among several Circuit Courts &ndash; the City did not brief the matter, and the Court therefore dismissed it without addressing the merits.</p> <p>For more information regarding this case or its implications for your agency or public safety department, please contact one of the attorney authors of this bulletin listed at the right in the <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=2532&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Public Safety</span></a> group, our your <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?p=2099"><span style="color: #0000ff">BB&amp;K attorney</span></a>.</p> <i>Disclaimer: BB&amp;K legal alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqu&eacute;.</i>Legal Alerts26 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40318&format=xmlBB&K Files Successful Amicus Brief in Eminent Domain Casehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40326&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP attorneys Kendall H. MacVey and Kira Klatchko filed a successful brief as amicus curiae counsel to a California appellate court, which found that the Mello-Roos Act can be used to finance acquisitions by eminent domain. (<a target="_blank" href="http://www.courts.ca.gov/opinions/documents/B255408.PDF"><span style="color: #0000ff"><i>Golden State Water Company v. Casitas Municipal Water District, B255408</i></span></a>)</p> <p>The brief was filed on behalf of the Association of California Water Agencies, the League of California Cities, the California State Association of Counties and the California Special Districts Association, which collectively represent more than 2,000 public entities. The entities supported Casitas&rsquo; position that it had the right to acquire Golden State Water Company to provide water service in the City of Ojai.</p> <p>In a Mello-Roos election held in Ojai, 87 percent of the voters approved using Mello-Roos property taxes to finance Casitas&rsquo; acquisition by eminent domain of Golden State&rsquo;s Ojai water system. Golden State, declaring its system was &ldquo;not for sale,&rdquo; brought a legal challenge to set aside the voter approved Mello-Roos measure.</p> <p>The Second District Court of Appeal affirmed that the Mello-Roos Act should be &ldquo;liberally construed&rdquo; to allow for the financing of the acquisition of facilities.</p> <p>Casitas is seeking control of the for-profit regulated utility, which has a monopoly in providing water service in Ojai, out of concern for high water bills. Casitas believes the Ojai community would benefit from having its water utility run by a locally controlled entity rather than an out-of-area-corporation seeking to maximize profits for its owners.</p>Client Successes26 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=40326&format=xmlWebinar: Regulations for Small Systemshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39627&format=xml<p><br /> Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Partner Kelly Salt is a speaker during the Association of California Water Agencies' webinar, titled: &quot;Regulations for Small Systems.&quot;<br /> <br /> The webinar, one in a series of special events on urban water conservation in the California drought, will provide an overview by the State Water Resources Control Board of the emergency regulations adopted May 5 and identify tools and resources available to water agencies as they work to meet conservation targets ranging from 4 percent to 36 percent.<br /> <strong><br /> When:</strong><br /> Tuesday, May 26, 2015<br /> 1 - 2:30 p.m.<br /> <br /> For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.acwa.com/2015-Drought-Regs-Webinars"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements26 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39627&format=xmlAdapting Water Laws to Increasing Demand and a Changing Climatehttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38447&format=xml<p>BB&amp;K Managing Partner Eric Garner will be a speaker at the IRWA&rsquo;s World Water Congress XV, which will be held May 25-29, 2015 in Edinburgh, Scotland. Eric will present &ldquo;Adapting Water Laws to Increasing Demand and a Changing Climate,&rdquo; where he will share how his water law work &mdash; both in the U.S. and abroad &mdash; have created solutions to increasing water demand. Based on more than 25 years of water law practice, Eric believes that aquifer governance institutions, &ldquo;physical solutions,&rdquo; that have developed in California are well-suited to managing groundwater, transboundary rivers and aquifers around the world in a time of shifting hydrology due to climate change. Eric will offer practical perspective on what works, what doesn&rsquo;t and why.</p> <p>For more information or to register, <a target="_blank" href="http://worldwatercongress.com/"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</p> <p>Follow along on Twitter: <a target="_blank" href="https://twitter.com/bbkericgarner"><span style="color: #0000ff">@BBKEricGarner</span></a> and <a target="_blank" href="https://twitter.com/WaterCongressXV"><span style="color: #0000ff">@WaterCongressXV</span></a>.</p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements26 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38447&format=xmlBB&K Secures Employment Discrimination Lawsuit Dismissal for Clienthttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39884&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP attorneys Cynthia Germano and Sarah Mohammadi obtained dismissal of an employee discrimination lawsuit on behalf of the Los Angeles Community College District.</p> <p>Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Michael Johnson granted LACCD&rsquo;s motion for summary judgment on the grounds that the plaintiff, Ewan Paymah, failed to provide evidence to support his claims that he was discriminated against because of race, ethnicity or religion. Johnson wrote in his ruling that LACCD &ldquo;has shown that there were legitimate non-discriminatory reasons for each of the employment actions alleged&rdquo; by Paymah, an adjunct professor at the college.</p> <p>In addition, Johnson agreed with the arguments asserted by Germano that Paymah failed to exhaust his administrative remedies before filing the lawsuit. The dismissal followed a May 7 hearing.</p>Client Successes22 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39884&format=xmlProposed California Law Would Automatically Approve Applications for Cell Siteshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39818&format=xml<p>The California State Assembly&rsquo;s Local Government Committee has unanimously voted Assembly Bill 57 out of committee, moving the bill forward. If adopted in its current form, AB 57 would <i>deem approved</i> an application for <i>new</i> wireless towers and facilities if: (1) the city (including a charter city) or county fails to approve or disapprove the application within the time periods established in the Federal Communications Commission&rsquo;s 2009 Declaratory Ruling (24 FCC Rcd. 13994), and (2) all public notices regarding the application have been provided. The law would also apply to applications to collocate additional wireless facilities and devices on or adjacent to existing facilities.</p> <p>The FCC&rsquo;s 2009 Declaratory Ruling referred to in <a target="_blank" href="http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/pub/15-16/bill/asm/ab_0051-0100/ab_57_bill_20150406_amended_asm_v97.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff">AB 57</span></a> interpreted a &ldquo;reasonable period of time&rdquo; to be 90 days for processing colocation applications, and 150 days for processing all other applications. In the 2009 ruling, the FCC also considered whether an application should be &ldquo;deemed granted&rdquo; when a state or local government fails to take action within these time periods, but rejected that remedy. The FCC said that, in any particular case, a locality that was challenged for failing to meet the federal deadline could show that more time was required to act on the application. The FCC recently reaffirmed that decision with respect to initial installations of facilities, and with respect to many colocations.</p> <p>AB 57, on the other hand, would establish a strict, statewide requirement that would approve applications for initial installations not acted on within a very short period of time, regardless of the complexity of the proposal.</p> <p>AB 57 also creates a &ldquo;deemed granted&rdquo; remedy for colocations. There is a federal &ldquo;deemed granted&rdquo; rule that applies to some colocations (those that do not involve a substantial change in the physical dimensions of existing facilities); but the AB 57 rule is broader, and applies to any application for colocation of equipment, facilities and antennas on or adjacent to an existing wireless facility. In addition, the FCC rule for colocations is being challenged in federal court, and may be struck down in whole or in part. If AB 57 is law, the California law would include a &ldquo;deemed approved&rdquo; remedy, even if the FCC rule was invalidated.</p> <p>Under AB 57, while notice must be given to the public, in many communities the time lines will not allow adequate opportunity for public participation, or time to develop a record that will allow localities to make a reasoned decision on an application or to establish appropriate conditions on an application. The time lines may also require localities to hire additional staff, adopt new procedures or give wireless applications priority over other pending applications.</p> <p>AB 57 contains an express finding that wireless facilities are a matter of statewide concern, not a &ldquo;municipal affair&rdquo; &mdash; as that term is used in section 5 of Article XI of the California Constitution &mdash; so that charter cities would also be subject to its requirements.</p> <p>For more information, please contact the attorney authors of this legal alert listed to the right in the <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=456&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Telecommunications Law</span></a> practice group, or your <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?p=2099"><span style="color: #0000ff">BB&amp;K attorney</span></a>.</p> <i>Disclaimer: BB&amp;K legal alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqu&eacute;.</i>Legal Alerts21 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39818&format=xmlBB&K Among Top Firms for Minority Attorneyshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39834&format=xml<p>RIVERSIDE, Calif.&nbsp;- Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP is pleased to announce that it was ranked No. 44 on <a target="_blank" href="http://www.law360.com/articles/657666/the-100-best-law-firms-for-minority-attorneys"><span style="color: #0000ff"><i>Law360&rsquo;s</i> Top 100 Firms for Minority Attorneys</span></a>. This is the national publication&rsquo;s first time ranking the firms for racial minorities, and is based on surveys submitted by the firms.</p> <p>In addition, BB&amp;K ranked No. 6 on <a target="_blank" href="http://www.law360.com/articles/657725/2015-law360-minority-report?article_related_content=1"><span style="color: #0000ff"><i>Law360&rsquo;s</i> Best Law Firms for Minority Partners</span></a>, with minorities making up nearly 20 percent of the equity partners.</p> <p>&ldquo;According to <i>Law360</i>, BB&amp;K&rsquo;s diversity representation is separate and apart from the trend at most law firms,&rdquo; said Partner Danielle Sakai, who oversees recruiting for the firm. &ldquo;BB&amp;K values diversity and knows that better service is delivered when we can offer different points of view and experiences to our clients.&rdquo;</p> <p>Previously, <i>Law360</i> recognized BB&amp;K as one of the Top 25 Best Law Firms for Female Partners, ranking the firm No. 13 on its <a target="_blank" href="http://www.law360.com/articles/529420/the-25-best-law-firms-for-female-partners"><span style="color: #0000ff">&ldquo;Ceiling Smashers&rdquo;</span></a> list.</p> <p>Last year, the firm was named the 12th most diverse law firm in the country by <i>The American Lawyer</i> in its annual <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/88E17A/assets/files/documents/Diversity-Scorecard-2014.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff">Diversity Scorecard</span></a>.</p> <p align="center">###</p> <p><b><i>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP</i></b><i> is a national law firm that focuses on environmental, business, education, municipal and telecommunications law for public agency and private clients. With nearly 200 attorneys, the law firm has nine offices nationwide, including Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Diego and Washington D.C. For more information, visit </i><a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/"><span style="color: #0000ff"><i>www.bbklaw.com</i></span></a><i> or follow @BBKlaw on Twitter.</i></p>Press Releases21 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39834&format=xmlWebinar: AB 52's New CEQA Requirementhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38776&format=xml<p>Best Best &amp; Krieger attorneys Sarah Owsowitz and Christopher Diaz will present a webinar for the State Bar of California Public Law Section, titled: &ldquo;AB 52&rsquo;s New CEQA Requirement.&rdquo; Starting in July 2015, AB 52 will require all public agencies acting as lead agencies under CEQA to enter into consultation with requesting tribes prior to the release of a negative declaration or an EIR. Consultation may concern the level of environmental review necessary, the significance of a tribal cultural resource and of a project's impact on that resource, and project alternatives and/or mitigation, including those recommended by the tribe. A &quot;tribal cultural resource&quot; &ndash; a new term for CEQA &ndash; is any site, feature, place, cultural landscape, sacred place, or object with cultural value to a California Native American tribe. Significantly, AB 52 applies not just to federally recognized tribes (as is the case with Section 106 review under the National Historic Preservation Act), but to all tribes on the California Native American Heritage Commission's &quot;contact list.&quot;</p> <p><strong>When</strong><br /> Thursday, May 21, 2015<br /> Noon &ndash; 1 p.m.</p> <p><a target="_blank" href="http://publiclaw.calbar.ca.gov/"><span style="color: #0000ff">For more information or to register, click here.</span></a></p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements21 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=38776&format=xmlBB&K Partner Michelle Ouellette Named a Top Woman Lawyer by the Daily Journalhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39749&format=xml<p><b>RIVERSIDE, Calif.</b> - Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP Partner Michelle Ouellette is among the <i>Daily Journal&rsquo;s</i> Top 100 Women Lawyers in California. While her recent environmental law accomplishments were considered, the legal newspaper highlighted her work leading the Santa Margarita Water District legal team in overcoming challenges to a water recovery and storage project.</p> <p>An Orange County Superior Court&rsquo;s ruling last year rejected six challenges to the environmental review and approvals by SMWD and the County of San Bernardino related to the Cadiz Valley Water Conservation, Recovery and Storage Project. The public-private partnership with Cadiz, Inc. to pump and transmit groundwater secures an annual average of 50,000 acre-feet of water for delivery to SMWD and other water users.</p> <p>That case is important to me because of the drought in California and the need to provide water to our citizens &nbsp;Ouellette said in an interview with the <i>Daily Journal</i>.</p> <p>&ldquo;I rely on a large group of people at BB&amp;K who work so hard and so diligently for our clients,&rdquo; Ouellette said. &ldquo;They&rsquo;re really the success story here &mdash; not me.&rdquo;</p> <p>For 26 years, Ouellette has practiced in BB&amp;K&rsquo;s Environmental Law and Natural Resources practice group. She effectively and efficiently helps cities, counties, special districts, developers and other clients in the private sector to navigate the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act, the National Environmental Policy Act &nbsp;and state and federal endangered species laws.</p> <p>The <i>Daily Journal</i> editors noted in the special Top Women Lawyers supplement that it&rsquo;s only been a short time that female lawyers have had the opportunity to reach &ldquo;legendary&rdquo; status for their complex and impactful legal work. The women on this list, like Ouellette, they wrote, have achieved that status.</p> <p><a target="_blank" href="http://www.dailyjournal.com/subscriber/SubMain.cfm?shCenFileName=Supplement&amp;shNewsType=Supplement&amp;selOption=Top%20Women%20Lawyers&amp;NewsId=1301&amp;pubdate=2015-05-13#section=tab3.cfm%3Fseloption%3Dnews%26pubdate%3D2015-05-13%26shNewsType%3DSupplement%26NewsId%3D941102%26sdivId%3Dtab3"><span style="color: rgb(0,0,255)">Read more in the <i>Daily Journal</i></span></a> (subscription required).</p> <p style="text-align: center">###<br /> <br /> &nbsp;</p> <p><b><i>Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP</i></b><i> is a national law firm that focuses on environmental, business, education, municipal and telecommunications law for public agency and private clients. With 200 attorneys, the law firm has nine offices nationwide, including Los Angeles, Sacramento, San Diego and Washington D.C. For more information, visit <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/"><span style="color: #0000ff">www.bbklaw.com</span></a></i>&nbsp;<em>or follow @BBKlaw on <a target="_blank" href="http://www.twitter.com/bbklaw"><span style="color: #0000ff">Twitter.</span></a></em></p>Press Releases19 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39749&format=xmlBB&K Police Bulletin: Supreme Court Allows Court-Ordered Transfer of Felon's Fire Arms to Third Partieshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39753&format=xml<p><b>Overview: </b>A court-ordered transfer of a felon&rsquo;s lawfully owned firearms from government custody to a third party is not barred by federal law prohibiting a felon to be in possession of firearms, the U.S. Supreme Court held this week. The felon may choose the third party his weapons are transferred to, so long as the court is satisfied that the recipient will not give the felon control over the firearms such that he or she could either use or direct their use.</p> <p><b>Training Points:</b> This case provides guidance to law enforcement agencies about how to handle confiscated firearms. The agency should not refuse to transfer lawfully owned firearms to a third party of the felon&rsquo;s choosing if the transaction was approved by the court. The court will determine whether the transfer would be likely to grant the felon access to the firearms, such that he or she may use or direct their use. Beyond that, felons are free to seek transfer of their firearms to whomever they choose, whether it is a seller of firearms or another third party who will deny the felon actual or constructive possession of the weapons.</p> <p><b>Summary Analysis: </b>In <a target="_blank" href="http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/13-1487_l6gn.pdf"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);"><i>Henderson v. United States</i></span></a>, the defendant was required to turn over firearms that he lawfully owned after pleading guilty to the felony offense of distributing marijuana. He then asked the FBI, which had custody of his firearms, to transfer them to a friend, which the agency refused to do. The government argued that allowing Henderson to transfer his firearms to a third party of his choosing would give him constructive possession over the weapons, which is prohibited by federal law. The Court disagreed, however, holding that federal law does not bar such a transfer unless it would allow the felon to later control the guns so that he could either use or direct their use.</p> <p>The Court held that the government&rsquo;s view conflates possession, which is prohibited by law, with an owner&rsquo;s right to alienate his property, which is not prohibited by the law. Accepting the government&rsquo;s argument would expand the scope of the law far beyond its purpose, preventing a felon from disposing of his firearms, even in ways that would guarantee he never uses them again. The Court held that reading of the law does nothing to advance the statute&rsquo;s goal of keeping firearms away from felons, and that it is thus beyond the scope of the law. The law prevents a court from ordering the sale or other transfer of a felon&rsquo;s guns to someone willing to give the felon access to them or to accede to the felon&rsquo;s instructions about their future use.</p> <p>What matters, the Court decided, is not whether a felon plays a role in deciding where his firearms should go. What matters is whether the felon will have the ability to use or direct the use of his firearms after the transfer. That ability to use or direct the use of the weapons is what constitutes constructive possession, not the ability to determine which third party gains possession of the firearms.</p> <p>For more information regarding this case or its implications for your agency or public safety department, please contact one of the attorney authors of this bulletin listed at the right in the <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=2532&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">Public Safety</span></a> group, our your <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?p=2099"><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 255);">BB&amp;K attorney</span></a>.</p> <i>Disclaimer: BB&amp;K legal alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqu&eacute;.</i>Legal Alerts19 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39753&format=xmlHollywood Project a Lesson for Agencieshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39755&format=xml<p><strong>By Christopher Diaz</strong></p> <p>Traffic. We all loathe it, yet we endure it day in and day out &mdash; especially in megacities like Los Angeles and San Francisco. In the current real estate upswing, many are questioning how developers can continue to build without further wreaking havoc on the daily commute.</p> <p>As part of all development in California, traffic, along with many other environmental topics, are scrutinized under the terms of the California Environmental Quality Act. Before any city or county can approve a development project, an analysis of all environmental impacts is required in the form of an environmental impact report or some other more simplified environmental review.</p> <p>Traffic continues to be a challenge to development in California. Because megacities continue to struggle to keep people and commerce moving, if traffic is not properly studied and analyzed under CEQA, it can halt development and hold up a project for years.</p> <p>This exact scenario is playing out in the city of Los Angeles with the proposed Millennium Hollywood project. The project is proposing two skyscrapers, one 39 stories arid the other 35 stories, bordering the historic Capitol Records building right in the middle of the glitz and glamour of traffic-congested Hollywood.</p> <p>&hellip;</p> <p><i>To read the full article in the May 19, 2015 Daily Journal, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.dailyjournal.com/subscriber/SubMain.cfm?seloption=NEWS&amp;pubdate=04/22/2015&amp;shNewsType=NEWS&amp;NewsId=-1&amp;sdivId=&amp;screenHt=670#section=DJStoryContent.cfm%3Fseloption%3DNEWS%26pubdate%3D04/22/2015%26shNewsType%3DNews%26NewsId%3D940798%26sdivId%3DmainContent1"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a> (subscription required).</i></p>BB&K In The News19 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39755&format=xmlWebinar: Where's the Line?: Ethical Tensions Between Public Disclosure, Our Ethical Duties as Lawyers, and Constitutional Rightshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39608&format=xml<p><br /> Best Best &amp; Krieger Partner&nbsp;Charity Schiller&nbsp;is a speaker&nbsp;the State Bar of California&nbsp;Environmental Law&nbsp;Section webinar, titled: &quot;Where's the Line?: Ethical Tensions Between Public Disclosure, Our Ethical Duties as Lawyers, and Constitutional Rights.&quot;<br /> <br /> Unique ethical issues confront lawyers practicing administrative law in the land use entitlement and environmental enforcement contexts. Whether representing a public agency, a property owner or another interested party, such as an environmental group, union, neighbor or neighborhood group, lawyers have ethical duties to clients. Public agencies also must comply with open records and meetings laws, as well as other laws designed to further transparency. Real parties and interested parties have constitutional rights to petition government, yet concerns about ex parte communications and undue influence sometimes restrict such outreach. This panel will outline the framework of these potentially competing rights and responsibilities, discuss how recent appellate cases highlight the tension between these various duties, and consider strategies to balance these issues without running afoul of our ethical responsibilities as attorneys.</p> <p><strong>When</strong><br /> Tuesday, May 19, 2015<br /> Noon &ndash; 1:30 p.m.</p> <p><a href="https://calbar.inreachce.com/Details?resultsPage=1&amp;sortBy=&amp;q=EL_5-19-15&amp;searchType=1&amp;groupId=453de0a1-6f0a-4531-a950-5949e4a17d95" target="_blank"><span style="color: #0000ff">For more information or to register, click here.</span></a></p>Conferences & Speaking Engagements19 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39608&format=xmlIf Neutral, Bans on Religious Displays OKhttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39715&format=xml<p><strong>By Jordan Ferguson</strong></p> <p>The display of religious material on public property has been an intermittently controversial issue for decades now. Whether it is a monument to the Ten Commandments on the steps of a courthouse, a menorah in front of city hall, or a talking wishing well, use of religious iconography on public property raises complex questions about the interplay between free speech and the separation of church and state.</p> <p>Sometimes, regulations of such displays have been freely permitted. At other times, they have been constrained or overruled entirely as violations of the First Amendment rights of those seeking to erect them. The array of cases dealing with this issue lay out some guidelines for local governments facing the potential controversies associated with religious displays. Yet each new case is worth paying attention to for the way every decision sheds light on how cities should think about these issues.</p> <p>A high-profile case that provides guidance on how local governments might approach holiday display regulations without violating constitutional rights was decided recently by a federal appellate court. The city of Santa Monica did not violate the First Amendment by ending all unattended displays in a city-owned park, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed. The ruling came in an ongoing dispute over &quot;Winter Displays,&quot; including a Nativity scene, in the city's famous Palisades Park. The court held that the city's repeal action equally applied to all displays and, thus, was a content neutral time, place and manner restriction allowed by the First Amendment.</p> <p>&hellip;</p> <p><i>To read the full article in the May 18, 2015 Daily Journal, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.dailyjournal.com/subscriber/SubMain.cfm?seloption=NEWS&amp;pubdate=04/22/2015&amp;shNewsType=NEWS&amp;NewsId=-1&amp;sdivId=&amp;screenHt=670#section=DJStoryContent.cfm%3Fseloption%3DNEWS%26pubdate%3D04/22/2015%26shNewsType%3DNews%26NewsId%3D940798%26sdivId%3DmainContent1"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a> (subscription required).</i></p>BB&K In The News18 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39715&format=xmlCalifornia's Office of Planning and Research Releases Draft Technical Advisory for Formal Native American Consultations Under AB 52http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39727&format=xml<p>The Office of Planning and Research released a Draft Advisory earlier this month entitled &ldquo;Discussion Draft Technical Advisory: AB 52 and Tribal Cultural Resources in CEQA&rdquo; to provide guidance to lead agencies regarding changes to CEQA requirements relating to tribal cultural resources pursuant to Assembly Bill 52.</p> <p>AB 52 requires that lead agencies undertaking CEQA review evaluate, just as they do for other historical and archeological resources, a project&rsquo;s potential impact to a tribal cultural resource. In addition, AB 52 requires that lead agencies, upon request of a California Native American tribe, begin consultation prior to the release of a negative declaration, mitigated negative declaration or environmental impact report for a project.</p> <p>AB 52 goes into effect July 1. Its requirements will apply to all projects for which a lead agency has not yet issued a notice of preparation of an environmental impact report or notice of intent to adopt a negative declaration.</p> <p>AB 52 does not require OPR to adopt updates to the initial study checklist in Appendix G of the CEQA Guidelines until July 1, 2016. However, the <a target="_blank" href="http://www.opr.ca.gov/docs/DRAFT_AB_52_Technical_Advisory.pdf"><span style="color: #0000ff">Draft Advisory</span></a> notes that lead agencies need not wait to update their own procedures. It suggests that lead agencies apply the following question in their environmental documents: Would the project cause a substantial adverse change in the significance of a tribal cultural resource as defined in Public Resources Code section 21074?</p> <p>The Draft Advisory also summarizes AB 52&rsquo;s requirements for consultation and tribal cultural resources. For example, it reiterates the definition of tribal cultural resource provided in the new Public Resources Code section 21074 and summarizes AB 52&rsquo;s new notification requirements. It also summarizes rules governing confidentiality during the tribal consultation process, which generally prohibit lead agencies from disclosing information provided by a California Native American tribe during the consultation process, without the prior written consent of the tribe.</p> <p>Finally, the Draft Advisory also provides a readable flowchart summarizing the compliance timeline and consultation process mandated by AB 52, which may be helpful to lead agencies.</p> <p>While the Draft Advisory does not add appear to add any information not already found in AB 52, OPR is accepting comments on the Draft Advisory through June 1. Comments may be sent via e-mail to <a href="mailto:CEQA.Guidelines@resources.ca.gov"><span style="color: #0000ff">CEQA.Guidelines@resources.ca.gov</span></a>.</p> <p>For more information about how AB 52 or OPR&rsquo;s Draft Advisory will affect your agency and its CEQA review process, please contact one of the attorney authors of this legal alert listed at right in the <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=5&amp;LPA=492&amp;format=xml"><span style="color: #0000ff">Environmental Law &amp; Natural Resources</span></a> practice group, or your <a target="_blank" href="http://www.bbklaw.com/?p=2099"><span style="color: #0000ff">BB&amp;K attorney.</span></a></p> <i>Disclaimer: BB&amp;K legal alerts are not intended as legal advice. Additional facts or future developments may affect subjects contained herein. Seek the advice of an attorney before acting or relying upon any information in this communiqu&eacute;.</i>Legal Alerts18 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39727&format=xmlInland Empire Real Estate Community Focuses on Water Restrictionshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39719&format=xml<p><b>By Neil Nisperos</b></p> <p>New state water restrictions by the State Water Resources Control Board to help speed along a historic conservation effort in light of the drought were shared with members of the local real estate community at a forum here.</p> <p>Among the ideas presented by panelists were a push toward more drought-tolerant landscaping and an emphasis on higher density and water-efficient development. Much of California&rsquo;s water use &mdash; 60 percent to 70 percent &mdash; goes to watering lawns and other turf, officials said.</p> <p>&hellip;</p> <p>Water agencies around the state are now required to conserve a significant amount of water, said event panelist Steven Anderson, a partner with the Riverside-based law firm Best Best &amp; Krieger. Among the prohibitions: outdoor water runoff into the street; using hoses without nozzles; a ban on street median irrigation; and non-recirculated fountains.</p> <p>&ldquo;So they&rsquo;ve got to march forward now and start implementing programs in order to save that amount of water,&rdquo; Anderson said of regional water agencies. &ldquo;This (discussion) is part of the education of the community about what folks in the development community and the commercial brokerage community can do and expect with respect to saving water for the commercial developments they&rsquo;re involved in and what they can do to help.&rdquo;</p> <p><i>To read the full article, which was published in the May 17, 2015 edition of the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.dailybulletin.com/general-news/20150517/inland-empire-real-estate-community-focuses-on-water-restrictions"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a>.</i></p>BB&K In The News17 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39719&format=xmlCyberattacks Present Ethics Questions for Law Firmshttp://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39628&format=xml<p><b>By <span>LYLE MORAN</span></b></p> <p>Law firms subject to cyberattacks must think carefully about whether to inform all their clients of the news and what details to include in any disclosures, experts say.</p> <p>A firm should first try to figure out whether the attack resulted in client data being accessed or stolen, said Richard Egger, an Ontario, Calif.-based partner at Best Best &amp; Krieger LLP.</p> <p>Egger, speaking in San Diego at the State Bar of California&rsquo;s annual ethics symposium, said detailed information provided by technical experts can help firms determine what type of disclosure, if any, they make about a cyberattack.</p> <p>Attorneys at the firm must also consider their obligation under Rule 3-500 of California's rules of professional conduct to keep clients reasonably informed about &ldquo;significant developments&rdquo; related to representation.</p> <p>If an attack is halted before accessing client data, Egger said &ldquo;that is not necessarily a circumstance where I want a send a letter out to all the clients saying, 'This happened. We stopped it.'</p> <p>&ldquo;On the other hand, if the Sony hack happened to us, I'd be looking at our complete client database and saying I've got to send a letter to everybody and that may include all of our former clients,&rdquo; he said at the event held at Thomas Jefferson School of Law.</p> <p>Egger said another reason to take care with disclosures to clients is that they later could be exhibits in a lawsuit brought against the firm as a result of a breach.</p> <p><i>To read the full article, which was published on May 12, 2015 in the San Diego Daily Transcript, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.sddt.com/news/article.cfm?SourceCode=20150512czg&amp;_t=Cyberattacks+present+ethics+questions+for+law+firms#.VVUoGJOS-Xg"><span style="color: #0000ff">click here</span></a> (subscription required).</i></p>BB&K In The News15 May 2015 00:00:00 -0800http://www.bbklaw.com/?t=40&an=39628&format=xml