Latest Events

  • FEB 22

    Disney's Grand New Neighbor Breaks Ground


    After years of planning, on February 11, 2019, The Grand had its groundbreaking in downtown Los Angeles. Goldfarb & Lipman is proud to be part of the team, which included: CRA/LA, Related California, Eli Broad, Frank Gehry, and countless others who helped bring this monumental development into fruition. The Grand will reinvigorate the cityscape of Los Angeles. We cannot wait until the grand opening, which is slated for 2021.


    Click here to see an ABC video about the project.


    Click here for more information from Related California.

  • OCT 18

    Lynn Hutchins Presents "Affordable Housing Infrastructure Financing" at County Counsels' Association of California's Fall Conference

    October 18-19, 2018
    1:30 – 2:30 p.m.
    Kimpton Sawyer Hotel
    Sacramento, California


    Lynn Hutchins’ presentation is part of the Association’s Public Works and Contracts Fall 2018 Study Section meeting.

  • OCT 05


    2018 APA California Chapter Conference

    Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina
    1380 Harbor Island Drive
    San Diego, CA 92101


    Monday, October 8, 2018

    1:15pm – 2:45pm


    “One Year After California’s Housing Package…How is the World a Different Place?”


    California passed a landmark housing package in 2017 including 15 game-changing laws with new funding and preservation authorities, new streamlining and zoning changes, and increased enforcement of state law. One year later, what is working? What is still percolating? California’s housing director, Ben Metcalf, explains the important opportunities for planning professionals in this post-package world to help provide one of the most basic human needs … a home.


    Speakers:  Eric Phillips and Ben Metcalf, Director of HCD.


    3:15pm – 4:45pm


    Preparing Housing Elements Under New State Laws: Lessons Learned from Applying AB 1397 and AB 879”


    Adopted as part of the Legislature’s 2017 Housing Package, AB 1379 and AB 879 require cities and counties to provide additional analysis when adopting a housing element and limit the designation of certain sites as suitable for lower-income housing, especially non-vacant sites. This panel will discuss the substantial changes regarding housing element analysis to help prepare planners for the next round of housing element updates that kicks off in 2021 by examining a case study of a recently-prepared housing element. The City of Encinitas is one of the first jurisdictions in California to prepare a housing element under AB 1379 and AB 879. Representatives who worked on the housing element will discuss the challenges and opportunities the new requirements presented during the planning process, and HCD staff will share their perspective on how the new laws influenced their review and assessment of the City’s analysis. The presentation will focus on recent changes in state housing element laws with respect to specific changes in statutory language and its effect on implementing housing elements going forward.


    Speakers:  Barbara Kautz, Eric Phillips, Brenda Wisneski, and Paul McDougall


    Tuesday, October 9, 2018

    3:15pm – 4:45pm


    Zen, the Housing Accountability Act, and the Art of Applying Objective Standards”


    As the legislature and the courts turn their attention to limiting local agency discretion, planners may be left wondering what their options are when reviewing housing development applications. The Housing Accountability Act and SB 35 limit review to the application of objective standards, but this answer only raises more questions. This panel will focus on statutory interpretation and case law that provides guidance on what constitutes an ‘objective’ standard to help planners understand what tools are available to evaluate housing projects. Ultimately, a well-crafted set of objective standards can benefit cities and applicants by providing certainty throughout the development process, and incorporating such standards into a specific plan unlocks a range of CEQA streamlining options for future projects.  Accordingly, the panel will also discuss El Cerrito’s recently-approved Specific Plan, which uses form-based codes and objective standards to regulate development while stimulating growth through local streamlining mechanisms. The presentation will focus on recent changes in the Housing Accountability Act and the addition of SB 35 along with case law with respect to the application of ‘objective’ standards. 2017 amendments have increased legal risks to cities and counties associated with denying or conditioning housing development projects, and the panel will focus on legal information to help planners comply with the new requirements.


    Speakers:  Barbara Kautz, Dolores Dalton, and Eric Phillips plus co-panelist from the City of El Cerrito.

  • SEP 27

    Goldfarb & Lipman Presents "Successful Project Planning, Financing, and Closing: The Nuts and Bolts of Advancing a Deal" at the SCANPH Pre-Conference Seminar, September 27

    SCANPH Pre-conference Seminars and Bus Tour
    September 27, 2018
    JW Marriott, LA Live
    900 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles, CA
    1:00 – 5:30 p.m.


    “Successful Project Planning, Financing, and Closing: The Nuts and Bolts of Advancing a Deal”


    Learn to navigate the entitlement process, including how to leverage state laws to support project approval (specifically SB 35, density bonus, CEQA streamlining, and the Housing Accountability Act). This interactive session will also cover loan documents, title issues, the closing process, and concerns related to local government that impact successful project planning and development, including relocation, Article 34, prevailing wages, and accessibility. This seminar is presented in partnership with SCANPH member Goldfarb & Lipman, LLP. Presenting attorneys: Isabel Brown, Elizabeth Klueck, and Eric Phillips.

  • SEP 25


    SCANPH Annual Conference
    September 28, 2018
    JW Marriott, LA Live
    900 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles, CA
    10:45am – 12:15pm


    “Legal Strategies to Combat NIMBYism in Siting”


    There is a strong legal framework to protect against discrimination in the siting of affordable and supportive housing and emergency shelters in California. This workshop will teach you the utility of these laws early on in the planning and development process so that lawsuits can be avoided and housing can be built faster. Under current law, all jurisdictions across the state must do their fair share to house people in the jurisdiction who are homeless. The law also ensures that occupants of shelter or housing are protected against discrimination by focusing the required analysis on the impact of the proposed use, rather than the occupants. And yet, resident opposition against specific projects and specific populations continue to act as barriers to worthy projects.

  • AUG 23

    Goldfarb & Lipman Presents NPH Brown Bag Training - What Lies Beneath: Top 10 Lurking Dangers in Construction Contracts on August 23, 2018

    NPH Brown Bag Training


    NPH Conference Room
    369 Pine Street, Suite 310
    San Francisco, CA 94104


    What Lies Beneath: Top 10 Lurking Dangers in Construction Contracts


    In the sprint to closing a construction loan for an affordable housing project, the construction contract is frequently overlooked and often misunderstood. While loan documents, partnership agreements, and other documents command attention and negotiation, the construction contract, in contrast, is often treated as a mere afterthought. After all, the AIA-standard forms are mostly boiler-plate stuff that someone must have thought made sense and all we need to think about is the contract sum and the schedule, right? Unfortunately, this conventional wisdom is anything but wise as the standard AIA construction contract is loaded with provisions that could potentially lead to shocking results. This Brown Bag will discuss the 10 most significant provisions, including some hidden risk allocation provisions and other clauses that appear harmless to the untrained eye, but, in fact, fundamentally alter the owner’s expectations.


    Speakers:  William DiCamillo and Isabel Brown

  • MAY 11

    Jeffrey Streiffer Joins Goldfarb & Lipman LLP

    Our firm is pleased to welcome the newest attorney to our team: Jeffrey Streiffer. Jeff brings with him a diverse breadth of knowledge and experience from his 19 years of legal experience. Not only does the addition of Jeff infuse the firm with a sense of excitement in welcoming a new colleague, he also elevates our insights into the world of government agencies and cooperatives.


    Prior to joining Goldfarb & Lipman, Jeff was Senior Counsel at the Office of General Counsel at the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). He is a member of the California Bar Association as well as the Minnesota Bar Association, and has been admitted to practice in the US Supreme Court, US Federal District Court for the Northern District of California, the US Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, and the US Federal District Court for the District of Minnesota.

  • APR 19

    Goldfarb & Lipman Attorneys Presenting at the Real Property Law Retreat in San Francisco

    37th Annual Meeting of the Real Property Law Section
    April 19 – 22, 2018


    Hyatt Regency Embarcadero
    Five Embarcadero Center
    San Francisco


    ** Earn up to 15.75 Hours MCLE Credit Including Credit in Legal Ethics, Elimination of Bias, and Competency Issues **


    How to Get Your Project Approved Under the New Housing Laws
    Friday, April 20
    10:45 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.


    2017 has been touted as the “year of housing” in the Legislature. Based on the Legislature’s concern that local governmental approvals are one of the biggest obstacles to approval of housing at all income levels, numerous bills were enacted to provide “by right” approvals and narrow the grounds for denying or reducing the density of conforming housing projects. This session will describe the bills that have been signed by the Governor and what can be expected in the next legislative session.


    Speakers: Nahal Hamidi Adler, Barbara Kautz, Rafael Yaquian


    Everyone Wants to Get the Project Done
    Saturday, April 21
    12:00 p.m. – 1:15 p.m.


    This panel will evaluate the ethical rules that real property attorneys should consider in real estate transactions in which multiple parties are involved and the transactions are initially non-adversarial. The panel will review the applicable California Rules of Professional Conduct, the State Bar Act, court decisions and practical tips regarding joint representation, confidentiality, conflict of interest, written disclosures, waivers, and when it may be necessary for attorneys to withdraw from representations.


    Speakers: Celia Lee, Robert Mills, Dianne Jackson McLean


    Redevelopment Dissolution and the Impairment of Contracts
    Saturday, April 21
    1:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.


    The California legislature’s 2011 abolition of redevelopment caused a seismic shift in funding for infrastructure, housing and other real property development in California. California is now one of the only states in the country without redevelopment. At the time dissolution happened, hundreds of millions of dollars were already committed to projects that were well underway when the Legislature acted. Dozens of lawsuits have been filed, challenging redevelopment dissolution’s impairment of ongoing contracts. This panel will report on how the courts have been deciding redevelopment dissolution issues, and the effect of those decisions on project funding.


    Speakers: Dianne Jackson McLean, Dolores Dalton, Rafael Yaquian


    The Front Lines: Implementation at Federal, State and Local Levels
    Sunday, April 22
    8:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.


    The U.S. Supreme Court issued a ruling that the Federal Fair Housing Act included claims based on disparate impact and HUD released its new guidelines. These two actions taken together have the potential to change how government decisions for affordable housing are made. This panel will discuss the decision, the new rules, and impacts of both on affordable housing developers, both in the selection of sites for new development as well as the operation of affordable housing.


    Speakers: Karen Tiedemann, Heather Gould