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California Municipal Law Blog
category:
Recent Court Decisions

Court Upholds Election Official’s Refusal to Qualify Initiative Based on “Full Text” Rule

by on March 18, 2017

posted in Elections, Recent Court Decisions,

In Napa County, a group of voters proposed an initiative that would enact a number of measures to protect the quality of watersheds and oak resources.  In Wilson v. County of Napa, an appellate court recently found their initiative proposal defective because it did not comply with an important procedural requirement known as the “full text” rule. Wilson is a good reminder to initiative proponents that the rules for qualifying initiatives can be unforgiving.  Proponents must take great care to make sure they satisfy all the procedural requirements before submitting their proposed measures.  ... Continue Reading

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tags: Elections, Full-Text Rule, Initiatives, Oak Woodlands,

Urgent: State Supreme Court Holds Emails or Text Messages Sent on Personal Accounts are Disclosable Public Records

by on March 2, 2017

posted in Public Records Act, Recent Court Decisions,

The California Supreme Court has issued its long-awaited decision on whether public employee emails or text messages, sent and stored on the employees’ personal accounts, are public records.  A unanimous Court held that such emails and text messages are disclosable records under the California Public Records Act.  (City of San Jose v. Superior Court, decided March 2, 2017)  ... Continue Reading

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tags: California Public Records Act, California Supreme Court, Private Emails, Text Messages,

Daily Journal Publishes Our Article on Whether Public Agency Legal Bills are Privileged

by on February 1, 2017

posted in Public Records Act, Recent Court Decisions,

On January 27, 2017, the Daily Journal published our article on the California Supreme Court’s recent decision regarding public agency legal bills, and whether they are privileged.  The full article can be accessed at this link: Daily Journal Article January 27  ... Continue Reading

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tags: Attorney-Client Privilege, California Supreme Court, Law Firm Billing Invoices, Public Records Requests,

Court Holds that Obstruction of Views Does Not Inversely Condemn Private Property

by on October 2, 2016

posted in Inverse Condemnation, Recent Court Decisions,

In what can only be described as a classic example of a “First World problem,” a Beverly Hills couple sued their city for ruining their beautiful views.  From their hilltop estate, the coupled had for years enjoyed unobstructed views of Beverly Hills, the Hollywood Hills, and other iconic Southern California landmarks.  But when Sequoia redwood trees the city had planted many years earlier began taking on their customary sizes, the tree canopy started blocking the couple’s view.  Because of the diminished view—which was getting worse as the trees grew—the couple sued the city for inverse ... Continue Reading

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tags: Beverly Hills, Boxer, Inverse Condemnation, View Obstruction,

Court Holds Six-Minute Discussion on Non-Agendized Matter Doesn’t Violate Brown Act

by on August 15, 2016

posted in Meetings, Recent Court Decisions,

When a person raises an issue not on a meeting agenda, how much can council or board members discuss the issue without running afoul of the Brown Act?  A recent court case provides some helpful guidance. In Cruz v. Culver City, a California appellate court held that a six-minute discussion about how to place an item on a future agenda did not violate the Brown Act.  Fortunately for local agencies, the court rejected a challenge to the discussion that had relied on a hyper-technical reading of the Act’s language.  ... Continue Reading

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tags: Agendas, Brown Act, Discussion on Unagendized Items,

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