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Coastal Regulation & Development


The California Coastal Act plays a significant role in almost every project in the coastal zone.  A thorough understanding of the Act and how it gets applied in practice is critical both to projects sponsored by public agencies and those undertaken by private parties. 

RWG’s attorneys are experienced in working with the Coastal Act and all aspects of coastal regulation.  Our knowledge of the Coastal Act allows us to assist with coastal permits and exemptions, administrative appeals, enforcement actions, and related local entitlements and CEQA compliance.  In addition, our familiarity with how both local agencies and the statewide California Coastal Commission implement the Act in practice means that we approach projects with efficiency, common sense, and creativity. 

Our experience with the Coastal Act translates into help every step of the way.  We provide advice regarding a project’s compliance with the Coastal Act, appear at administrative hearings on project approvals, and handle appeals to the Coastal Commission.  Throughout, we work closely with our clients and any other members of their team (such as architects, engineers, permit expediters) to successfully navigate the process. And, when our clients are opposed to a coastal development project, our detailed knowledge of the process means that we provide targeted ways to challenge a project outright or seek to have it modified. 

In short, we use our significant knowledge of the Coastal Act and related administrative proceedings to help our clients achieve their objectives, whether focused on a specific project or broader policy goals.


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Richards, Watson & Gershon delivers practical advice and solutions tailored to the unique needs of public entities. Working seamlessly across offices in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Orange County, Temecula, the Central Coast, and Sacramento, and our dedicated team of experts provides the full scope of public law services.

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RWG consistently monitors developments that impact our private and public agency clients. Our frequent e-alerts serve to provide our unique insights into these developments.