Steve M. Anderson

Partner

steve.anderson@bbklaw.com

Tel: (951) 826-8279

Location(s)

At a Glance

Steve is regularly involved with surface and groundwater rights issues, including the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act.
 
He helps clients with mitigation banking, land conservation and Endangered Species Act matters.
 
Steve also serves as a volunteer attorney and board member for a local legal aid clinic.

Steve Anderson works on water rights, groundwater, wetlands, in-lieu fee program, endangered species, environmental mitigation, conservation easements and other natural resource law matters. As a partner at Best Best & Krieger LLP, Steve is a member of the firm’s Environmental Law & Natural Resources, Special Districts and Municipal Law practice groups.

Water Law
Steve is regularly involved in water issues faced by public agencies and private clients across California, including water rights disputes, groundwater, recycled water, water diversions and reporting, drought impacts on water supply, implementation of the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, water bonds (Proposition 1), water supply assessments, wastewater and integrated water planning. Steve routinely drafts water rights opinions and contracts involving water supplies.
 
General Counsel Practice
Steve serves as general counsel to water districts, court-appointed watermasters, resource conservation districts and other special districts. In this capacity, Steve works on Brown Act, conflict of interest, contracting, grant funding, employment, transactional and other public agency governance issues, in addition to natural resource law matters.
 
CWA, ESA and More
Steve also assists public and private entities with Section 404 wetlands permitting, in-lieu fee programs, mitigation banking and other federal Clean Water Act issues. He helps clients in complying with Section 7 consultation requirements, habitat conservation planning and conservation banking issues under the federal Endangered Species Act Steve routinely interacts with the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Army Corps of Engineers, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, the Regional Water Quality Control Boards and other state and federal regulatory agencies on permitting for infrastructure development and other public and private projects.
 
Steve represents public and private clients in administrative proceedings and civil litigation in state and federal courts involving the Delta, the Colorado River, State Water Resources Control Board orders, the ESA, the CWA, the California Endangered Species Act, the Porter-Cologne Water Quality Control Act and other laws.
 
Steve regularly makes presentations on water, endangered species, CWA, mitigation and land conservation issues at local, regional and statewide conferences. Steve has taught courses on the ESA and habitat conservation planning at the University of California, Riverside. He also frequently drafts articles on the ESA and California water law issues for state and national publications.
 
Before joining BB&K, Steve served as a judicial law clerk to the Chief Justice of the Nevada Supreme Court.
 
Steve also serves as a volunteer attorney and board member of the Inland Empire Latino Lawyers Association legal aid project, a nonprofit that provides free legal services to the under-served. He is admitted to practice in the State of California.
 
Sample Recent Matters

  • Assisted public agencies in forming GSAs under SGMA in more than eight groundwater basins.
  • Represented public water agency in dispute over local surface water supplies; litigation settled on favorable terms.
  • Secured approval for the first Army Corps/EPA in-lieu fee program approved in the Los Angeles District under the 2008 CWA Mitigation Rule.
  • Represented coalition of water agencies in endangered fish species litigation related to Delta water supplies.
  • Assisted resource conservation districts and nonprofit land trust to place into conservation thousands of acres of protected riparian habitat and uplands.
  • Helped vineyard owner in dispute with uphill neighbor over groundwater pumping.
  • Prepared water rights opinion in support of multi-million dollar real estate transaction.


Education

  • University of California, Hastings, J.D.
  • University of California, San Diego, B.A.


Awards

  • The Best Lawyers in America®, Water Law, 2019-2020
  • Wiley W. Manuel Pro Bono Service Award
  • IELLA Legal Aid Clinic Volunteer Attorney of the Year, 2001

 

Groundwater Recharge Projects Get Boost Under AB 658
Legal Alerts Oct 16, 2019

Groundwater Recharge Projects Get Boost Under AB 658

New California Law to Help Achieve SGMA Requirements

New Wetlands Protections in California Proposed
Legal Alerts Apr 04, 2019

New Wetlands Protections in California Proposed

SWRCB Votes to Adopt Regulations that Could Impact Permitting Procedures

U.S. Supreme Court Limits Agency Discretion Under ESA
Legal Alerts Dec 04, 2018

U.S. Supreme Court Limits Agency Discretion Under ESA

Critical Habitat for Endangered Species Decision

Groundwater Extraction Permits Not Subject to CEQA in San Luis Obispo County
Legal Alerts Aug 06, 2018

Groundwater Extraction Permits Not Subject to CEQA in San Luis Obispo County

Approval is a Ministerial Action, not subject to CEQA, Appellate Court Finds

State Water Board Adopts Groundwater Extraction Fees For SGMA Intervention
Legal Alerts May 22, 2017

State Water Board Adopts Groundwater Extraction Fees For SGMA Intervention

Fee Imposition Will Begin This Summer

State Water Board Releases Latest Round of Proposed Emergency Drought Regulations for California*
Legal Alerts Feb 02, 2017

State Water Board Releases Latest Round of Proposed Emergency Drought Regulations for California*

Written Comments Due in Five Days

Draft Plan Released to Establish Permanent Water Conservation Requirements Throughout California
Legal Alerts Dec 02, 2016

Draft Plan Released to Establish Permanent Water Conservation Requirements Throughout California

Public Comments Accepted Until Dec. 19

California State Water Board Extends Public Comment Period for Wetlands Policy; New Permits Likely to be Required
Legal Alerts Jul 27, 2016

California State Water Board Extends Public Comment Period for Wetlands Policy; New Permits Likely to be Required

Public Comments Due Aug.18

California State Water Board Releases Revised Drinking Water Fee Regulations
Legal Alerts Jul 20, 2016

California State Water Board Releases Revised Drinking Water Fee Regulations

Public Comments Due July 29th

Emergency Groundwater Sustainability Plan Regulations Adopted By California Water Commission
Legal Alerts May 19, 2016

Emergency Groundwater Sustainability Plan Regulations Adopted By California Water Commission

Key Principle: Sustainable Management Through Local Efforts

New Executive Order Released By California Governor for Long-Term Water Planning Released
Legal Alerts May 09, 2016

New Executive Order Released By California Governor for Long-Term Water Planning Released

State Water Resources Control Board Releases Draft Regulation to Modify Water Conservation Requirements

California State Water Board Set to Impose New Drinking Water Fees on Public Water Systems
Legal Alerts May 04, 2016

California State Water Board Set to Impose New Drinking Water Fees on Public Water Systems

Public Comments Due June 22

March 15 Deadline Approaches For California Water Suppliers to Apply for Adjustments to Water Conservation Requirements
Legal Alerts Mar 11, 2016

March 15 Deadline Approaches For California Water Suppliers to Apply for Adjustments to Water Conservation Requirements

Climate, Growth and Water Supply Adjustments Ease Conservation Burden in Some Communities

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

California State Water Board Issues Directive on Submitting Information to Adjust Conservation Standards
Legal Alerts Feb 10, 2016

California State Water Board Issues Directive on Submitting Information to Adjust Conservation Standards

Climate, Population Growth Among New Factors For Mandatory Drought Restrictions

California State Water Board Releases Proposed Text of Emergency Water Conservation Regulation
Legal Alerts Jan 20, 2016

California State Water Board Releases Proposed Text of Emergency Water Conservation Regulation

Public Comments Due Jan. 28

State Water Board Releases Proposed Framework for Extending Emergency Water Conservation Regulations in California
Legal Alerts Dec 23, 2015

State Water Board Releases Proposed Framework for Extending Emergency Water Conservation Regulations in California

Public Comments Due Jan. 6

California’s Small Water Suppliers Must Report Water Conservation Data by Dec. 15
Legal Alerts Dec 04, 2015

California’s Small Water Suppliers Must Report Water Conservation Data by Dec. 15

Information on Outdoor Watering and Monthly Water Production Required

California Water Board Considering Extension Of Emergency Drought Regulations
Legal Alerts Nov 05, 2015

California Water Board Considering Extension Of Emergency Drought Regulations

Mandatory Water Restrictions Could Run Beyond February, Depending On Rain and Snowfall

California Governor Signs Bills to Streamline Groundwater Basin Adjudications to Better Harmonize with SGMA
Legal Alerts Oct 09, 2015

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

Bills Addresses Traditional Costs and Delays in Adjudications

Sustainable Groundwater Management Act Amended
Legal Alerts Sep 04, 2015

Sustainable Groundwater Management Act Amended

SB 13 Provides Clarifications and Revisions to SGMA

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

State Board Issues Curtailment Notices of Surface Water Rights Diversions
Legal Alerts May 13, 2015

State Board Issues Curtailment Notices of Surface Water Rights Diversions

California Drought Prompts Action

Tough Mandatory Water Restrictions of up to 36 Percent Retained in Draft Emergency Drought Regulation for California
Legal Alerts Apr 29, 2015

Tough Mandatory Water Restrictions of up to 36 Percent Retained in Draft Emergency Drought Regulation for California

State Water Resources Control Board Cites Need to Avoid Potential “Catastrophic Impacts”

State Board Issues Notice of Potential Curtailment of Surface Water Rights Diversions
Legal Alerts Jan 27, 2015

State Board Issues Notice of Potential Curtailment of Surface Water Rights Diversions

Recent Rainfall Not Enough to Stop Drought Emergency Measures

Fate of $7.5B Water Bond up to Voters
Authored Articles & Publications Nov 03, 2014

Fate of $7.5B Water Bond up to Voters

BB&K Attorney Steven M. Anderson Discuss the Water, Quality, Supply and Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2014 in the Daily Journal

Contact Steve M. Anderson