Mar 20, 2023
Marin Lawyer March 2023 Issue
Mar 20, 2023
By Chelsea Heaney
This issue of the Marin Lawyer picks up where the January 2023 Marin Lawyer left off, with an immigration-related piece profiling the Multicultural Center of Marin, written by MCBA Board Member and elected Board of Supervisors representative, Mary Sackett. In her piece, Ms. Sackett details the incredible work performed by the Multicultural Center of Marin over the course of the past twenty years, including the organization’s focus on providing youth leadership opportunities, services for the unhoused, environmental justice working groups, and programs that promote and preserve the cultural assets of our immigrant communities.
Next, Daniel J. Turner, attorney with Reuben, Junius & Rose, LLP, provides an insightful account of the progress (or lack thereof!) shown by various Bay Area counties in meeting their obligations under the state’s Housing Element Law. Mr. Turner details the various penalties for non-compliance with the Law after the recent passing of the deadline for Bay Area cities and counties to revise and update their Housing Elements. He concludes his article with a discussion of the various housing advocacy group lawsuits resulting from the failure of several jurisdictions to meet the Housing Element deadline.
Shifting to the employment arena, Holly Sutton, Partner and Chair of the Farella Braun + Martel Employment Practice, Rebecca Stephens, Partner with Farella Braun + Martel Employment Practice and Jamie Talt, Sr. Associate with Farella Braun + Martel Employment Practice, provide an extensive and informative overview of several new or amended employment laws recently passed in California, covering topics ranging from off-duty marijuana use, reproductive rights, California Family Rights Act, COVID-19, criminal law and the workplace, new avenues of enforcement against employers, privacy, and pay transparency, among others.
Sean Welch and Hilary Gibson, partners in the San Rafael office of Nielsen, Merksamer, Parrinello, Gross & Leoni, LLP, explore how California’s SB 1439, which went into effect January 1, 2023, expands the previously narrow application of California Government Code section 84308, which restricts the ability of an officer of a state or local government agency, or a candidate for such office, to accept a contribution of more than $250 from certain contributors if the official makes or will make a decision regarding the contributor involving a “license, permit, or other entitlement for use.” Specifically, Mr. Welch and Ms. Gibson detail how SB 1439 extends the provisions of Government Code section 84308 to all officers of local agencies, whether appointed or elected, and the implications related thereto. Particularly relevant for our purposes as attorneys, the article includes an interesting discussion on the concept of “agency” and how the expanded Section 84308 may apply to attorneys representing clients in a covered proceeding.
Lastly, MCBA Board Member Alex Vahdat provides an engaging overview of his interview with author and attorney Paul T. Llewellyn from the February 28, 2023 General Membership Meeting regarding Mr. Llewellyn’s new book, “Unshackled: Reimagining the Practice of Law.” Relying on real life experience having practiced law in both England and the United States, Mr. Llewellyn’s book explores a wide variety of ideas ranging from how law students are trained, the billable hour model, and civility amongst attorneys. I have ordered myself and copy and urge you all to do the same, as it is sure to be an interesting read!
In addition, be sure to check out the President’s Message from MCBA President Ahtossa Fullerton discussing her thoughts on the importance and relevance of bar associations in today’s world, as well as the “Judge’s Profile,” featuring Judge Verna Adams, who has served on the Marin County Superior Court for more than 23 years!
Chelsea Heaney is a Family Law attorney with Vance & Wills P.C. | Family Law and serves on the MCBA Board of Directors.