In Jenkins et al. v. Brandt-Hawley et al. (2022) 86 Cal.App.5th 1357, the First District Court of Appeal found that CEQA suits can be subject to malicious prosecution actions.  The Court of Appeal upheld an order denying an anti-SLAPP motion, allowing a malicious prosecution action to proceed against an attorney who litigated an unsuccessful

Effective January 1, 2023, Thomas Law Group (TLG) will merge with Downey Brand. We are thrilled to welcome the TLG team to CEQA Chronicles and look forward to sharing their updates on important CEQA developments, new case law, legislation, and guidance.

In St. Ignatius Neighborhood Assn. v. City & County of San Francisco (Nov. 18

This week Governor Newsom signed a series of bills intended to accelerate housing development in California. Two bills – AB 2011 and SB 6 – seek to facilitate residential redevelopment of commercially zoned areas, though they contain stringent requirements that may put their benefits out of reach for many developers. AB 2097 largely eliminates local

In Mission Peak Conservancy v. State Water Resources Control Bd. (2021) 72 Cal.App.5th 873, the First District Court of Appeal held that the State Water Resources Control Board’s (SWRCB) streamlined permitting process for small, domestic water appropriations was ministerial, reiterating that “CEQA does not regulate ministerial decisions—full stop.”

Mission Peak Conservancy and an individual

In Protect Tustin Ranch v. City of Tustin (2021) 70 Cal.App.5th 951, the Fourth District Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s determination that the Class 32 infill categorical exemption was properly applied to a project which would redevelop a portion of a shopping center in the City of Tustin (City) and rejected the

In Los Angeles Dept. of Water & Power v. County of Inyo (2021) 67 Cal.App.5th 1018, the Fifth District considered a challenge to a decision by Inyo County (County) to acquire landfill sites owned by the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP) through eminent domain. In the published portion of the opinion, the Court upheld the writ issued by the trial court and held that (1) the County’s failure to give notice of its intent to use a CEQA exemption excused the LADWP from exhausting administrative remedies as to exemption claims, and (2) the existing facilities categorical exemption did not apply to the operations of the unlined landfills.

Sacramentans for Fair Planning v. City of Sacramento (2019) 37 Cal.App.5th 698, 704.

The Yamanee project, a 10-story mixed-use condominium development in Midtown Sacramento, (Project) exceeded both the density and height limits of its parcel’s zone. A Sacramento General Plan provision allows the City Council to authorize projects at densities higher than the applicable zoning

In Bottini v. City of San Diego (2018) 27 Cal.App.5th 281, the Fourth District Court of Appeal held that the City of San Diego (City) violated CEQA where it refused to rely on a categorical exemption and instead required that an EIR be prepared for a single family residence project (Project) on a vacant lot.

In California Water Impact Network v. County of San Luis Obispo (2018) 25 Cal. App. 5th 666, the Second District Court of Appeal held that the approval of groundwater well permits was a ministerial act and not subject to CEQA environmental review because no discretion was exercised when such permits were issued.

County of San