Claims Procedure for Contractors on Public Works Projects

April 17, 2017 I. Summary Public works contracts entered into between January 1, 2017 and January 1, 2020 must incorporate the newly enacted contractor claims procedures that are set forth in Public Contract Code Section 9204 (“Section 9204”).  Assembly Bill 626 (“AB 626”) enacted Section 9204 and requires a public entity to respond to a contractor’s […]

California Supreme Court Holds that Writings Contained in Public Employees’ Personal Accounts May be Subject to Disclosure under the California Public Records Act

SUMMARY On March 2, 2017, the California Supreme Court, in City of San Jose v. Superior Court of Santa Clara County (Smith),[1] held that “when a city employee uses a personal account to communicate about the conduct of public business, the writings may be subject to disclosure under the California Public Records Act (CPRA or […]

Inclusionary Housing Ordinance That Did Not Include Findings of a Nexus Between a Development Project and The Need for Additional Affordable Housing Upheld by California Supreme Court

I. Summary Relying on a city’s broad power to regulate land use, the California Supreme Court recently upheld the City of San Jose’s inclusionary housing ordinance that requires new developments to set aside 15% of for-purchase units at affordable housing. In California Building Industry Assn. v. City of San Jose, 61 Cal. 4th 435 (Cal. […]

Sign Ordinance Based on Categories of Signs is an Invalid Content-Based Restriction

I. Summary  On June 18, 2015[1] the United States Supreme Court held that an Arizona city’s sign ordinance that categorized signs into types with different sets of applicable regulations amounted to a content based restriction on speech that was not justified by the city’s interest in aesthetics and traffic safety.  The ordinance included various restrictions […]

Updated CEQA Procedures to Consider Native American Cultural Resources

I. Summary Designed to protect Native American tribal cultural resources, Assembly Bill 52 (“AB 52”) amends California Environmental Quality Act (‘CEQA”) procedures to require lead agencies to consult with a Native American tribe before releasing a negative declaration, mitigated negative declaration, or environmental impact report if the tribe requests both notification of proposed projects and […]

Court of Appeal clarifies procedures and deadlines under Eminent Domain Law

Summary The Court of Appeal in Rutgard v. City of Los Angeles, 52 Cal. App. 5th 815 (2020) held that a public agency desiring to retain condemned property that has not yet been put to public use must adopt a reauthorization resolution within ten years of the initial resolution declaring the public need. The Court […]

Exception to mobile billboard ordinance for “authorized vehicles” is likely an invalid content-based restriction on free speech.

Summary A city ordinance that prohibited mobile billboards except for “authorized vehicles” including emergency vehicles and construction/maintenance vehicles is a content-based restriction on free speech and presumptively invalid. Discussion In 2016, the City of Simi Valley (“City”) adopted an ordinance that prohibits the parking or standing of mobile billboard advertising displays on city streets. The […]