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Clifford W. Schulz
Mr. Schulz focuses his practice on water, environmental and real property law, representing both public and private clients. An attorney with several legal successes throughout his career, he provides clients with balanced representation, meeting their needs as an accomplished litigator and providing advisement on a host of related matters involving water, land use, and development.
In practice for more than 40 years, Mr. Schulz has represented clients on numerous issues surrounding water law and natural resources including:
- Reclamation law
- Water rights acquisition
- Water transfers
- Water-and-power system development and transfers
- Water supply contracting
- The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the National Environmental Protection Act (NEPA) and the Endangered Species Act (ESA)
- Water quality
Additionally, in his capacity as counsel to his public and private sector clients, he advises them on other general legal matters including:
- Purchase and sale of real property
- Operating agreements
- Validation actions
- Subdivision land development
- Acquisition of water supplies
Specific experience includes representing clients in matters related to the diversion of water by California Water Project and the federal Central Valley Project from the Sacramento's State and San Joaquin River Delta. He works closely with a broad coalition of water users on the CALFED process, which has a goal of finding balanced solutions to water supply and fishery issues in the Delta and San Francisco Bay. He also represented a client on the purchase of a Lake Tahoe ski resort and currently represents State Water Project contractors in an action challenging SWP contract amendments.
Examples of legal matters Mr. Schulz has handled on behalf of clients include:
- Successfully represented the Kern County Water Agency in Kern County Water Agency v Sierra Club (451 U.S. 287) in a case in which the United States Supreme Court rejected a challenge to continued operation of the State Water Project’s Delta Diversion facilities.
- In contested proceedings, he acquired water rights for the El Dorado Irrigation District and Kings River Water Conservation District in their efforts to build water-and-power projects.
- Represented the Calaveras County Water District in environmental litigation related to the North Fork Stanislaus River Hydroelectric Project, Pacific Gas & Electric Co. v. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (720 Fed.2d 78 (D.C. Cir. 1983));SAFE v Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (744 Fed.2d 661 (9th Cir. 1984)).
- Successfully represented State Water Project contractors before the California Supreme Court in an action challenging amendments to the State Water Project contracts, Planning and Conservation League v. Department of Water Resources (17 Cal.4th 264 (1998)).
Professional Activities & Affiliations
Mr. Schulz’ professional activities and affiliations include:
- Martindale-Hubbell AV Rated Attorney
- Northern California Super Lawyer (2010, 2011, 2012)
- Author, “Changing Judicial Attitudes Towards Property Rights in California Water: From Vested Rights to Utilitarian Reallocation,” Pacific Law Journal, Vol. 19, 1988
- Member, Association of California Water Agencies
- Member, California State Bar Association
B.A. University of California, Berkeley, 1963
J.D. University of California, Berkeley, 1966