California Supreme Court to Review Banning Ranch Conservancy v. City of Newport Beach

On August 19, the Supreme Court granted a petition for review in Banning Ranch Conservancy v. Superior Court (2015) 236 Cal.App.4th 1341 (Sup. Ct. Case No. S227473). The high court will consider the following three issues:

  1. Did the City of Newport Beach’s approval of the Banning Ranch project comport with the directives of the City’s General Plan to “coordinate with” and “work with” the California Coastal Commission to identify habitats for preservation, restoration, or development prior to project approval?
  2. What standard of review should apply to a city’s interpretation of its general plan? and
  3. Was the City required to identify environmentally sensitive habitat areas – as defined in the California Coastal Act of 1976 (Pub. Resources Code, § 3000, et seq.) – in the EIR prepared by the City for the project?

A summary of the Court of Appeal’s decision, which is no longer citable precedent, is available here. Whit Manley, of RMM, represents the Respondent City of Newport Beach in the matter.