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California’s AB 45 Opens the Door to Manufacture and Sale of Industrial Hemp Products
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2021

On October 6, 2021, Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 45 (AB 45) into law. AB 45 permits the manufacture and sale of a wide range of products containing regulated amounts of industrial hemp. Below is a brief overview: What is industrial hemp? “Industrial hemp” is defined as cannabis plants that have no more than 0.3% tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)...

California Department of Justice Announces Housing Strike Force
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2021

Key Points The California Department of Justice (DOJ) is preparing for increased enforcement of state housing laws, primarily focusing on local governments. The Housing Strike Force announcement is part of an ongoing trend of the state increasing enforcement of state housing laws...

New Law Shifts Liability for Certain CalPERS Benefit Overpayments to Employers
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2021

Key Points Starting in 2022, CalPERS contracting agencies will bear the risk of certain overpayments to retirees that result from compensation reporting errors. The employer, rather than the retiree, will have to repay the overpayment and pay a “penalty” based on the present value of future benefit payment adjustments...

Additional Law Enforcement Reform Amendments, Expansions, and Changes Signed Into Law by Governor
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2021

On September 30, 2021, Governor Gavin Newsome approved and signed AB 26, AB 48, AB 89, AB 481, AB 490, and AB 958, which amend existing laws, add entire new chapters, and expand laws impacting law enforcement agencies, their operations, and the review of conduct of peace officers...

Raising the Stakes on Crypto Compliance: Infrastructure Bill Imposes Felony Charges for Digital Asset Reporting Failures
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2021

Key Points New tax reporting provisions on cryptocurrency, as well as criminal consequences for noncompliance, survived in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (H.R. 3684) signed into law. The legislation imposes potential felony charges for failures to report certain "receipt" of digital assets, as well as expands the definition of "broker" to target crypto exchanges. On November 5, 2021, President Biden signed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act into law...

Raising the Stakes on Crypto Compliance: Congress Passes Infrastructure Bill With Felony Charges for Digital Asset Reporting Failures
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2021

Key Points New tax reporting provisions on cryptocurrency, as well as criminal consequences for noncompliance, survived in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (H.R. 3684) set to become law. The legislation imposes potential felony charges for failures to report certain "receipt" of digital assets, as well as expands the definition of "broker" to target crypto exchanges...

IRS Issues 2022 Limits for Retirement Plans
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2021

On Nov. 4, 2021, the IRS announced in Notice 2021-61 cost-of-living adjustments ("COLAS") to the tax-qualified retirement plan dollar limits for 2022. Most of the applicable dollar limits currently effective for 2021 will increase significantly compared with prior years. Below is a summary of the limits that are generally relevant for most retirement plans. Effective Jan...

U.S. Supreme Court Permits Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccination Program To Proceed Without Religious Exemption, But EEOC Continues the Exemption In Latest Guidance
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2021

Key Points Mandatory vaccination programs may be permissible at federal level without Title VII religious exemption. The equivalent state religious exemption is still viable in California. Social, political, or personal preference objections about the possible effects of the COVID-19 vaccine do not qualify as “religious beliefs” under the Title VII religious exemption. DOES V. MILLS On October 29, 2021, in a 6-3 decision, the United States Supreme Court in Does v...

2021 Legislative Update #2: Additional Wins for Housing Advocates, Some Losses
Hanson Bridgett LLP, November 2021

Key Points In addition to five key victories for housing advocates discussed in an earlier alert, the California Senate passed many additional housing bills not included in their “Building Opportunities for All” Housing Package. Bills from the Housing Package that would have approved an affordable housing bond (SB 5), residential housing on certain commercial sites (SB 6), and local housing data reporting requirements (SB 477) all failed to win approval...

2021 Legislative Update: Housing Advocates Score Key Wins
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2021

Housing Highlights Throughout California, most single-family zoned parcels may now be split into two lots, with up to four primary residences. Density bonus applications may no longer be rejected if a proposed waiver of development standards will cause specific adverse impacts on the physical environment. Developers’ ability to lock in development standards under SB 330 and the Housing Accountability Act has been extended from 2025 to 2030...

New Law Requires Certification of Medical Directors in Skilled Nursing Facilities and Imposes New Reporting Requirements
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2021

Key Points Skilled nursing facilities must ensure their medical directors are certified within five years of the date of hire or by January 1, 2027, for medical directors already working in a SNF SNFs must report medical director certification status to CDPH by June 30, 2022 SNFs must report medical director changes to CDPH within 10 days of the change Effective January 1, 2022, a skilled nursing facility (SNF) will be prohibited from contracting with a medical director unless

Brown Act in a Time of Pandemic: the Governor Vetoes AB 339
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2021

Key Points Governor Newsom vetoed AB 339. AB 361 will continue to operate as currently construed. On October 7, 2021, Governor Newsom vetoed Assembly Bill (AB) 339 (Lee), a bill aimed at addressing Brown Act teleconferencing requirements for large public entities. AB 339 sought to add special rules for meetings of city councils or county board of supervisors that govern jurisdictions containing at least 250,000 people...

California Signs Police Reform Legislation Into Law
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2021

On September 30, 2021, Governor Gavin Newsom approved and signed SB 2 and SB 16.1 SB 2 created a decertification procedure for peace officers and removal/denial of qualified immunity for claims or actions brought under Tom Bane Civil Rights Act (Civil Code section 52.1). SB 16 impacts retention of peace officer employment records and access to employment records...

AB 701 Continues the Recent Trend in California to Regulate Warehouse Distribution Centers
Hanson Bridgett LLP, October 2021

In 2021, warehouse distribution centers were at the forefront of California law, regulations, and environmental initiatives. These efforts seek to regulate labor practices of warehouse operators and the environmental impacts caused by the expansion and concentration of distribution centers over the last decade. This article summarizes AB 701 and other initiatives in California targeting warehouse distribution operations...

New Law Protects Water/Wastewater Sector by Limiting Rate Challenges
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2021

Water and wastewater agencies gained an important new protection from lawsuits challenging their rates on Wednesday, when Governor Newsom signed SB 323 (Caballero). For water or sewer service fees or charges adopted after January 1, 2022, this new law requires any lawsuits challenging those fees or charges to be commenced within 120 days of the effective date...

New Legislation Addresses Brown Act Teleconferencing Requirements
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2021

Key Points Assembly Bill (AB) 361 allows an agency to use teleconferencing for public meetings without requiring the teleconference location to be accessible to the public or a quorum of the members of the legislative body of the agency to participate from locations within the boundaries of the agency's jurisdiction during proclaimed state of emergencies...

Housing Law Shows its Teeth: Another Win for Objective Standards
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2021

Key Points California's First District Court of Appeal continued a recent pro-housing trend, reversing a City of San Mateo rejection of a multifamily housing development application. The court determined the denial was based on a subjective design guideline, therefore violating the Housing Accountability Act. Ambiguous guidelines may still be utilized in limited circumstances if there is a long-standing and consistent local government interpretation...

California Privacy Rights Act – What's Next?
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2021

In the November 2020 election, California voters approved the California Privacy Rights Act of 2020 (“CPRA”) amending the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (“CCPA”). Businesses are expected to comply with the CPRA by January 1, 2022. Together, the CCPA and CPRA set out standards that California businesses must follow in gathering and maintaining personal information about consumers...

California Legislature Takes Aim at Brown Act Teleconferencing Requirements
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2021

Key Points The State Assembly and Senate have both passed AB 361 and AB 339, two bills aimed at addressing Brown Act teleconferencing requirements in the COVID-19 landscape. The Governor is expected to sign or veto the bills before October 1...

An In-Depth Look at the Oakland A's Proposed New Stadium Project
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2021

Key Points Opponents of the proposed Oakland A's stadium at Howard Terminal argued that the Governor missed a deadline to certify the project for an expedited environmental review pursuant to Assembly Bill (AB) 734, a special purpose bill.   AB 734 contained no explicit deadline for certification, but it incorporated guidelines from AB 900, as amended, which did include a certification deadline...

Five Points to Negotiate in a 'Black Box' Product Development Agreement
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2021

  Article PDF Practical Insights Five Points to Negotiate in a 'Black Box' Product Development Agreement What is a “black box” product development agreement? How do you protect your product idea? What intellectual property can a Manufacturer expect to own? Can a Manufacturer limit a Processor’s right to work for others? What about co-manufacturing agreements? What is a “black box” product development agreement? A food

A Recent Ruling Involving Unlined Landfills Highlights the Pitfalls of Relying on Categorical Exemptions under CEQA
Hanson Bridgett LLP, September 2021

Key Points As litigation under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) continues to drive lengthier and costlier environmental reviews, the use of "categorical exemptions" can provide a quick and efficient path towards CEQA compliance – but only if the exemption is legally sound and defensible. California's Fifth District Court of Appeal recently published Los Angeles Department of Water and Power v. County of Inyo (Cal. Ct. App., Aug. 17, 2021, No...

Ninth Circuit Upholds 'Significant Nexus' Test for Federal Permitting of Wetlands Projects
Hanson Bridgett LLP, August 2021

Key Points Ninth Circuit reaffirms the “significant nexus” test for determining whether filling certain wetlands in 2007 violates the Clean Water Act The narrower test for determining the Clean Water Act’s jurisdiction under the 2020 Navigable Waters Protection Rule did not apply since it postdated the 2007 filling of the wetlands...

The Freeze Partnership: An Estate Tax Technique For Real Estate and Other Appreciated or Leveraged Assets
Hanson Bridgett LLP, August 2021

  The freeze partnership is an often overlooked estate tax planning tool. Unlike more common estate tax planning vehicles, the freeze partnership is not a trust and, as the name implies, is a closely-held partnership, limited partnership or LLC (in this article, the term partnership will be used to refer to partnerships, limited partnerships and LLCs)...

Stop Syar Expansion Decision Demonstrates the Uphill Battle for CEQA Plaintiffs
Hanson Bridgett LLP, August 2021

Key Points The court found that plaintiff’s reliance on an issue raised by third-party commenter to establish exhaustion was a risky endeavor; insofar as a third party settles institutes its own challenge on an issue and settles a claim, the plaintiff in a later action, at least in some circumstances, cannot maintain its own challenge on that same issue...

 

 

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