Past Programs

Program slides are available to AEP members here.

OCAEP Lunch Program – May 8, 2018

Orange County Transportation Authority (OCTA) – Mitigation Challenges

Speakers: Dan Phu of OCTA and David A. DeBerry of Woodruff, Spradlin & Smart

Topic Overview:

Dan Phu and David A. DeBerry will be providing an overview of the OC Go (formerly Measure M2) Freeway Mitigation Program. This program provides comprehensive environmental mitigation to offset biological impacts of the 13 OC Go freeway projects. OCTA recently obtained approvals from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service on a Natural Community Conservation Plan/Habitat Conservation Plan (NCCP/HCP). The approval of the NCCP/HCP provides the framework for mitigation of the projects through acquisition of conservation lands as well as funding of habitat restoration projects. The implementation of the Plan, along with some of the challenges that OCTA encountered during preparation of the NCCP/HCP and environmental documents, will be discussed.


OCAEP Lunch Program – March 22, 2018

Restoration of Trabuco Creek – Challenges, Trends and Technology

Speakers: Richard Beck and Anisha Malik of Michael Baker International

Topic Overview:

Giant bamboo, creeks, devastating beetles, aggradation, and drones – what a great lunch topic as we roll into March and spring monitoring!? Join the discussion as we highlight active stream restoration in one of Orange County’s best creeks – Trabuco Creek. Stream restoration continues to evolve as challenging issues such as climate change, drought and exotic species grow. The discussion will include project site background, compensatory mitigation review, restoration strategies, on-going challenges, and new trends.


Joint OCAEP/APA Lunch Program – July 27, 2017

Into the Vortex: The Ever Expanding Reach of the CEQA Administrative Record

Speakers: Ricia Hager and Ginetta Giovinco

Ricia Hager, JD is a Partner at Woodruff, Spradlin & Smart where she practices environmental law, land use law, and public law. Her clients include regional and local government agencies. Ms. Hager advises clients on all aspects of the California Environmental Quality Act and state and federal laws regulating air quality, water quality, endangered species, and historic resources. Ms. Hager has successfully defended environmental challenges in federal and state courts, both at the trial court and appellate levels.

Ginetta Giovinco is a shareholder in the Litigation and Coastal Law Departments at Richards, Watson & Gershon, APC, and is Chair of the Firm’s Coastal Department. Ginetta specializes in land use, including both advisory work and litigation, with an emphasis on matters involving the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and the California Coastal Act. Ginetta has obtained several published appellate court decision victories. She also regularly advises public agencies on CEQA compliance in connection with the processing of initial studies, negative declarations, and environmental impact reports.

Topic Overview:

At its core, the CEQA administrative record is intended to include all those items that a lead agency actually reviews and relies upon in its decision-making process. Recent case law suggests, however, that the scope of the administrative record is evolving to reach outside the files of the lead agency and into the files of other entities – such as the consultants who assist in the preparation of project plans or the CEQA document. This presentation will address the ongoing evolution of issues such as document retention, the pros and cons of emails, implications when a lead agency directly contracts with consultants, the differences between public agency sponsored projects and private applicant proposals, “screencheck” drafts, and transparency issues under the Public Records Act. Through this discussion, attendees will learn best practices for document management and take home a better understanding of what may fall within the scope of the administrative record.