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California Land Use Law & Policy Reporter

March 2017

Volume 26, Number 6 March 2017


In the Midst of a Wet Winter, the Drought Is Still Guiding California Land Use Law159


U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Seeks Greater Influence with New Endangered Species Act Compensatory Mitigation Policy161


California Supreme Court Grants Review to Determine whether Medical Marijuana Ordinance Constitutes a ‘Project’ for Purposes of CEQA163


Court of Appeals:

Ninth Circuit Declines to Halt Los Angeles Subway Project Pending Court Review of NEPA Challenge165

Beverly Hills Unified School District v. Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority, et al., ___F.3d___, Case No 17-55077 (9th Cir. Jan. 25, 2017).

Ninth Circuit Holds City Ordinance Resulted in Breach of a Development Agreement but Did Not Constitute an Unconstitutional Impairment under the Contract Clause166

Pure Wafer Incorporated v. City of Prescott, ___F.3d___, Case No. 14-15940 (9th Cir. Jan. 10, 2017).

District Court:

Federal Land Policy and Management Act, NEPA and APA Challenges to Sage-Grouse Plans Rejected by the District Court for Lack of Stand-


Otter v. Jewell, ___F.Supp.3d___, Case No. 15-cv-1566 (D. D.C. Jan. 5, 2017).

District Court Amends Judgment Requiring Retroactive Application of 1998 Law to Geothermal Lease Extension170

Pit River Tribe v. Bureau of Land Management, ___F.Supp.3d___, Case No. 2:04-cv-00956 (E.D. Cal. Jan. 27, 2017).

District Court Finds Federal/State Wildlife Data Collection Program Offended NEPA and the Wilderness Act—Orders Destruction of Data Collected172

Wilderness Watch v. Vilsack, ___F.Supp.3d___, Case No. 4:16-cv-12-BLW (D. Id. Jan. 18, 2017).


Supreme Court:

California Supreme Court De-Publishes Recent Sixth District Court of Appeal’s Decision on the California Environmental Quality Act175

Bay Area Clean Environment, Inc. v. Santa Clara County et al, 2 Cal.App.5th 1197 (6th Dist. Aug. 31, 2016); Supreme Court Case No S237709 (Dec. 14, 2016).

District Court of Appeal:

Despite Brown Act Violation, Fourth District Court Finds Planning Amendments via Ballot Initiative for Big Box Store Survive Challenge176

Hernandez v. Town of Apple Valley, ___Cal.App.5th___, Case No. E063721 (4th Dist. Jan. 5, 2017).

Sixth District Court Holds County Board of Education Does Not Have Authority to Exempt Charter Schools from Local Zoning Regulations178

San Jose Unified School District v. Santa Clara County Office of Education, ___Cal.App.5th___, Case No. H041088 (6th Dist. Jan. 24, 2017).