Municipal and Special Districts

Not "Clearly Frivolous" - City Loses Attorney's Fees in Public Records Act Case

February 5, 2015 | Bulletin No. 1180735.1

Although often mentioned as a possible remedy when defending meritless Public Records Act (PRA) lawsuits, it is actually very difficult for public agencies to obtain attorneys’ fees and costs when they prevail in PRA litigation. In practice, Courts may only award such fees and costs when a plaintiff's case is "clearly frivolous." As an example, in Bertoli v.

LOCC Annual Conference | Tax Increment Financing is Back! Using the New EIFD Tool

Event Information

Date & Time:

Exact date & time TBD


San Jose


Sponsored By:

League of California Cities (LOCC)
2015 Annual Conference (September 30 - October 2, 2015)


Constantine C. Baranoff
Aaron Laurel, Economic Development Manager, City of West Sacramento
Russ Powell, Vice President, Economic Planning Systems


Property Tax Refund Claims May Be Filed Directly In Superior Court When The Assessed Property Was Not Owned By The Taxpayer; Such Claims Are Governed By A Four-Year Limitations Period

January 27, 2015 | Bulletin No. 1173988.2

When a taxpayer requests a property tax reduction, the taxpayer must ordinarily first request a reduction with the county board of equalization or assessment appeals board before the taxpayer may file in superior court. However, in Williams & Fickett v.

Inadvertent Disclosure of Privileged Documents in Response to a Public Records Act Request Converts the Document Into a Public Record

December 15, 2014 | Bulletin No. 1166066.1

The Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District, delivered a sobering reminder to public agencies to carefully review documents produced in response to the Public Records Act (“PRA”)  to avoid disclosure of documents protected by evidentiary privileges.

California Supreme Court: Arbitrators May Rule on Pitchess Motions

December 8, 2014 | Bulletin No. 1163976.1

In Pitchess, the California Supreme Court (the "Court") held that, upon good cause, a criminal defendant can obtain law enforcement personnel records.  In 1978, the California Legislature codified this process by adding a series of statutes to the Evidence Code.  In Riverside County Sheriff’s Department v. Stiglitz (Drinkwater), December 1, 2014, Case No. S206350, the Court held that these statutes authorize an arbitrator (and not just a judge) to order the review of law enforcement personnel records.

City SLAPPs Away Landlord's Section 1983 Claim

December 7, 2014 | Bulletin No. 1160236.1

Anti-SLAPP motions provide defendants with a valuable tool to dispose of meritless cases that stifle protected speech . In Squires v. City of Eureka (October 17, 2014, A138768; A139849) ___Cal. App.4th___  [14 Cal. Daily Op. Serv. 12, 987], the Court of Appeal upheld the use of an anti-SLAPP motion by the City of Eureka ("City") to dismiss a case brought by a group of landlords, after finding that the case stemmed from the City's protected code enforcement activities.

Courts Uphold Supplemental Assessment of Wells and Related Facilities/Improvements; and Validate Use of Cost Approach

November 11, 2014 | Bulletin No. 1156003.2

The County of Kern Tax Assessor’s (“Assessor”) use of the cost approach to value to appraise new oil and gas wells for the purpose of levying supplemental assessments has been upheld by the Fifth District Court of Appeal. In Chevron USA, Inc. v. County of Kern (October 28, 2014, F066273) ___Cal.App.4th ___ [2014 Daily Journal D.A.R. 14,553], the Court of Appeal affirmed the Kern County Assessment Appeals Board's (“Board”) decision which upheld the Assessor’s cost method for valuing new oil and gas wells, and found that the Board’s decision was a valid exercise of its discretion.

Public Works Institute | Ethics Training

Event Information


Thursday, November 6, 2014


8:30 AM


Sacramento Area Sewer Dist.
10060 Goethe Rd

Sponsored By:

Sacramento Chapter of the American Public Works Association (APWA)
(2014 Public Works Institute, November 5-7, 2014)


Jonathan P. Hobbs
Bruce Cline, City Attorney, City of Folsom


This presentation will focus on a) What is Ethics, b) Ethical vs.Legal Issues, and c) Organizational Culture


Tax Increment Financing Making a Return to California

Daily Journal, Thursday, October 9, 2014

Tax increment financing is back in California. New state legislation expanding the use of property tax increment through infrastructure financing districts (IFDs) gives local governments a tool to invest in needed infrastructure and economic development projects, much as they formerly could through redevelopment agencies until their elimination in 2012. However, it's clear that the new IFDs won't fully replace redevelopment agencies and the billions of dollars of tax increment they once generated.

Public Agency May Recover the Cost of Supplementing Administrative Record

September 29, 2014 | Bulletin No. 1146149.1

In CEQA litigation, the party challenging the project can either request that the agency prepare the record of proceedings (“Record”), or prepare the Record itself, subject to certification by the lead agency. In either case, the party preparing the Record must strive to do so at reasonable cost, and a prevailing party who prepared the Record may recover the costs of doing so. 

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