On May 29, 2020, the Judicial Council of California amended Rule No. 9 of its COVID-19 emergency regulations to add certainty and to shorten the tolling period for civil causes of action subject to statutes of limitation of 180 days or less, such as CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act) lawsuits.

The new Rule is good news for developers of approved and soon-to-be approved projects. The tolling period now ends on a set and relatively near-term date, providing renewed certainty.

Previously, Rule No. 9 tolled all statutes of limitation from April 6, 2020 to the date 90 days after the Governor declares that the COVID-19 state of emergency is lifted.
Continue Reading Land Use Litigation Statute of Limitations Tolling Period to End on August 3, 2020

Two affordable housing measures are currently proposed for the November 5, 2019 ballot: (i) City Charter and Code amendments to encourage certain 100% affordable and teacher housing projects by providing for a streamlined ministerial — i.e., no CEQA — approval process for qualified projects and (ii) an up-to $500 million affordable housing bond.

Continue Reading Two Affordable Housing Measures Proposed for November Ballot

On October 6, 2017, Governor Brown approved Assembly Bill (AB) 246, extending certain CEQA litigation streamlining provisions under the Jobs and Economic Improvement Through Environmental Leadership Act of 2011 (the Act) for two years. The Governor may now certify projects as eligible for streamlining until January 1, 2020.  Projects that are certified for streamlining have until January 1, 2021 to complete the CEQA process and obtain project approval.

The Act provides three key litigation streamlining benefits to qualifying projects:


Continue Reading State Grants Two Year CEQA Streamlining Extension for “Environmental Leadership Projects”

CA State CapitalThe California Court of Appeal for the Sixth Appellate District recently held, in Aptos Council v. County of Santa Cruz, 10 Cal. App. 5th 266 (2017) that environmental review under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) need only analyze environmental impacts of development resulting from a zoning amendment if the development is reasonably foreseeable. This decision provides helpful guidance to municipalities considering zoning and land use plan amendments that permit development at higher densities.

Continue Reading Court Confirms CEQA Analysis of Zoning Amendments Limited to Reasonably Foreseeable Development

photo-1447622919665-d95b0d80b251On August 4, the San Francisco Planning Commission took two actions to move forward the establishment of a citywide Transportation Demand Management (TDM) Program designed to shift San Franciscans out of cars and onto sidewalks, bicycles and public transit. The Planning Commission recommended that the Board of Supervisors approve an ordinance creating the citywide TDM Program, and simultaneously adopted TDM Program Standards to take effect if the Board of Supervisors approves the TDM Program ordinance.

Continue Reading SF Planning Commission Moves Forward with Transportation Demand Management Program