Deborah A. Wordham

Of Counsel

Tel: (213) 787-2542

Location(s)

At a Glance

Deborah works with clients implementing the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act.
 
She worked at The Nature Conservancy, where she advised on California water rights and water resources.
 
A former deputy attorney general with the California Attorney General’s office, Deborah represented state natural resources agencies both as litigation counsel and in-house counsel.

Deborah Wordham’s practice areas include water rights, water quality, endangered species, the California Environmental Quality Act, the National Environmental Policy Act and related fields of environmental and natural resources law at both the state and federal levels. As deputy attorney general with the California Attorney General’s office from 2001 through 2011, Deborah represented several state natural resources agencies in petitions for writ of mandate, as well as traditional litigation. Deborah also acted as  in-house counsel for some agencies.
 
Her representation of state agencies involved biological opinions for the operation of the Central Valley Project and State Water Project, amendments to State Water Contractors’ long-term water contracts, California and federal Endangered Species Act litigation, streambed alteration agreements, cleanup and abatement actions, and Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (Superfund) cost recovery settlements. She also advised state boards and commissions as in-house counsel.
 
Prior to joining Best Best & Krieger LLP, Deborah was in-house at The Nature Conservancy, where she advised on California water rights and water resources. While at The Nature Conservancy, Deborah participated in complex stakeholder negotiations related to the State Water Resources Control Board’s update of the Bay-Delta Water Quality Control Plan and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission relicensing, and advised The Nature Conservancy on elements of the Bay-Delta Conservation Plan.
 
Deborah works with clients on implementing the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, updating urban water management plans and responding to the State Water Board’s drought regulations. She is admitted to practice law in the State of California.

Education

  • Whittier Law School, J.D.
  • University of Western Ontario

 

Preparations Underway to Regulate 1,2,3-TCP in California’s Drinking Water
Legal Alerts May 8, 2017

Preparations Underway to Regulate 1,2,3-TCP in California’s Drinking Water

State Water Resources Control Board Held Public Hearing

California to Require Domestic Water Suppliers to Test School Drinking Water for Lead
Legal Alerts Feb 23, 2017

California to Require Domestic Water Suppliers to Test School Drinking Water for Lead

State Water Resources Control Board Amends Domestic Water Supply Permit

DWR Releases Draft Emergency Regulations for Groundwater Sustainability Plans in California
Legal Alerts Feb 19, 2016

DWR Releases Draft Emergency Regulations for Groundwater Sustainability Plans in California

Proposed Regulations Include Required Plan Elements and Criteria for State Review

Shasta Lake Water Levels Subject of New Litigation
Legal Alerts Jan 21, 2016

Shasta Lake Water Levels Subject of New Litigation

Water Contractors Challenge SWRCB Order Potentially Restricting Water

California Governor Signs Bills to Streamline Groundwater Basin Adjudications to Better Harmonize with SGMA
Legal Alerts Oct 9, 2015

California Governor Signs Bills to Streamline Groundwater Basin Adjudications to Better Harmonize with SGMA

Bills Addresses Traditional Costs and Delays in Adjudications

Deadlines for Comments on Groundwater Issues Approaching
Legal Alerts Aug 31, 2015

Deadlines for Comments on Groundwater Issues Approaching

Emergency Regulations and List of Overdrafted Basins

Draft Guidelines for Planning Grants Released by California Department of Water Resources
Legal Alerts Aug 27, 2015

Draft Guidelines for Planning Grants Released by California Department of Water Resources

Guidelines Will Drive Funding Process; Comments Due Oct. 5

Draft Basin Boundary Regulations Released
Legal Alerts Jul 21, 2015

Draft Basin Boundary Regulations Released

Public Comments Due Sept. 4

Drought Bill To Combat Water Shortages Passes In California Legislature
Legal Alerts Jun 23, 2015

Drought Bill To Combat Water Shortages Passes In California Legislature

Measure Would Allow Forced Consolidation Of Water Suppliers, Large Civil Fines

State Water Resources Control Board Adopts Emergency Water Restrictions Throughout California
Legal Alerts May 7, 2015

State Water Resources Control Board Adopts Emergency Water Restrictions Throughout California

Sweeping Regulations Expected to Take Effect by May 15

Proposed Framework for Mandatory Water Use Reductions in California Released
Legal Alerts Apr 8, 2015

Proposed Framework for Mandatory Water Use Reductions in California Released

Fast Track Ahead for Emergency Regulations