June 2012

By William W. Abbott

At this moment in time, there is some irony in writing an article about the demise of state affordable housing programs in circumstances in which residential values have taken a major haircut and interest rates are at record lows, the two factors together resulting in new levels of affordability. Nevertheless, over the long run, state programs have served a vital role in affordable housing and from a long term policy perspective, should remain funded and operational. The most recent decision in this area pertains to prevailing wage requirements and the specified exemptions to the obligation to pay prevailing wage on public projects, depending upon the funding source.

Continue Reading A Combination of Otherwise Exempt Funding Sources Causes a Seniors Project to be Subject to Prevailing Wage Requirements

By Katherine J. Hart and Daniel S. Cucchi

In Tomlinson v. County of Alameda (June 14, 2012, S188161) __Cal.4th __, a developer proposed to divide two existing ‘R-1’ zoned parcels totaling 1.89 acres into 11 lots to allow for the development of single-family homes. The project was located in the community of Fairview in unincorporated Alameda County, bordering the City of Hayward. The County sent out written notices to a number of agencies, neighbors, and other interested parties, including the Appellants, indicating the County’s intent to utilize the section 15332 (Infill Development) CEQA exemption.

Continue Reading Supreme Court Says Exhaustion Requirement Applies in CEQA Exemption Suit

By Katherine J. Hart

The Citizens for Open Government v. City of Lodi (2012) 205 Cal.App.4th 296, case involved the consolidation of three separate actions revolving around the City of Lodi’s (City) approval of a conditional use permit (CUP) for a shopping center to be anchored by a Wal-Mart Supercenter. The first action stemmed from the City’s petition to discharge the writ issued in the earlier lawsuit wherein the 2004 EIR for the Wal-Mart Supercenter was challenged and the City’s lodging of a supplemental administrative record. The second and third actions arose out of Appellants Citizens for Open Government’s (Citizens) and Lodi First’s challenge to the City’s certification of the 2008 revised EIR, and subsequent approval of the CUP and shopping center project. The trial court consolidated all three actions and issued one ruling.

Continue Reading Revised EIR for Wal-Mart Supercenter Is Upheld On Second Go-Around