Land Use Law & Planning Conference


Our 37th Annual Conference was held on Friday, January 27, 2023. 

For more information about the 2023 speakers, panel discussions, and conference co-chairs please see below. 

Details regarding next year's conference will be provided once available.


Learn, network, and keep current.

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UCLA Extension’s annual Land Use Law and Planning Conference is the leading networking event and source of information on California land use legislation, case law, and the emerging issues that frame land use and development practices in the nation’s most populous state.

The program’s unique cross-disciplinary approach explores the full range of perspectives drawn from land use planning, legal, development, and environmental communities, and demonstrates how these factors influence the day-to-day work of planners, developers, environmental regulators, and attorneys.

Now in its 37th year, the UCLA Extension conference offers a big-picture view of land use law and planning practice, with knowledgeable speakers providing succinct and provocative updates on core state and federal case law and legislation, as well as practice pointers on basic land use law and planning issues for practitioners and scholars. 

Who should attend?

All individuals involved in land use and environmental issues in California, including:

  • Public officials & planners
  • Attorneys & consultants
  • Developers & real estate professionals
  • Students interested in planning and public policy

Join Us!

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Date & Time
Friday, January 27, 2023
8:30am–4:30pm PT

Omni Los Angeles Hotel at California Plaza
251 South Olive Street
Los Angeles, CA. 90012

Registration Fee

Student Fee: $395; Members of Donating Organizations: $495

Fees & Credit

Registration is required for this program. Visitors are not permitted. Fees include conference materials sent via PDF. 

  • Regular: $595
  • Student: $395
  • Members of Donating Organizations: $495

Accrediting Associations

Attend this year's conference and earn up to 7.0 Credit Hours (0.7 CEU) from Minimum Continuing Legal Education (MCLE)* and APA - American Planning Association**

*This activity has been approved for Minimum Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) credit by the State Bar of California for credit hours stated above. UCLA Extension certifies that this activity conforms to the standards for approved educational activities prescribed by the rules and regulations of the State Bar of California governing minimum continuing legal education.
**This activity has been approved for Continuing Professional Development Program (CM) credits by the American Institute of Certified Planners.


The refund deadline is January 26, 2023 by 11:59pm PT. Refunds cannot be made after this time. A service charge of $30 is withheld from all refunds (full refund granted if the conference is canceled or rescheduled). For more information, call (310) 825-9971.



8:30 a.m.   Welcome & Program Overview
8:45 a.m.   Update #1
CEQA 2022- A Year in Review
10:15 a.m.   Morning Break
10:30 a.m.   Assessment #1
The Land Use & CEQA Implications of Climate Regulation & Legislation
12:00 p.m.   Lunch Break
12:30 p.m.   Keynote Address: Mary Nichols
1:15 p.m.   Update #2
Quick Hits
1:45 p.m.   Assessment #2
VMT: Where are we and what is driving mitigation strategies
3:00 p.m.   Afternoon Break
3:15 p.m.   Update #3
Planning, Zoning, and Development Law
4:25 p.m.   Closing Comments
4:30 p.m.   Conference Ends

Keynote Address

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State-of-the-State in Real Time

Mary Nichols
Distinguished Counsel, UCLA School of Law and Emmett Institute of Climate Change and the Environment

Join us for this unique opportunity to gain insight from a veteran California advocate and leader in the field of natural resource management and clean air policy. In addition to her academic work, which included directing the UCLA Institute of the Environment, Nichols draws from a long career that included roles as the chair of the California Air Resources Board (2007-2020) and as California Secretary for Resources (1979-2003). 

Panel Discussions

On January 27th, join us for a review of the important issues of the past year—and a look at what’s ahead for 2023.

A perennial staple and favorite at the conference, hear distinguished panelists cover the judicial, legislative, and regulatory developments that occurred in the CEQA arena in 2022. You will be up-to-date and up-to-speed on all things CEQA after attending this session.


Tina Thomas
Counsel, Downey Brand

Kevin Bundy
Partner, Shute Mihaly & Weinberger


David Smith 



Patricia Curtin
Director, Fennemore

Matthew Klopfenstein
Partner, Cal Advisors LLC


Alisha Winterswyk

Get the latest and greatest on pending CESA listings, wildfire regulation updates and guidance from the Attorney General, developments under the Brown Act, the Scoping Plan, WOTUS, and the "builder's remedy."


David Smith
Partner, Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP

Alisha Winterswyk
Partner, Best Best & Krieger LLP

In the wake of CARB’s action on the 2022 Scoping Plan, an 11th-hour legislative press by Governor Newsom, appropriation of hundreds of billions in federal funding, and rapidly evolving local mandates, this panel will identify on-the-ground land use and CEQA implications of ever-evolving and increasingly stringent climate regulations and legislative mandates, including a newly heightened focus on and mandate for environmental justice considerations.


Lauren Sanchez (invited)
Senior Advisor on Climate to Governor Newsom

Amee Raval
Director, Asian Pacific Environment Network

Shelby Buso
Chief Sustainability Officer, City of San Diego


David Smith

With the passage of SB 743, transportation impact assessments under CEQA were turned upside down. In concept, a focus on vehicle miles traveled should be an effective new lens for assessing transportation impacts of projects on the environment, providing an added bonus of comprehensively considering many secondary impacts of automobile activity. Nearly ten years after the bill was signed by the Governor, we are still finding challenges with establishing thresholds, consistently evaluating impacts, and developing mitigation programs. Join our panel of experts to hear the latest strategies on effectively assessing VMT and addressing and mitigating impacts.


Josh Lee
Deputy Director of Planning, San Bernardino County Transportation Authority

Tiffany Wright
Partner, Remy, Moose & Manley

Damon Davis
Land Development/Transportation Specialist, County of San Diego


Matt Burris


Conference Co-Chairs

UCLA Extension extends gratitude to the Land Use Law & Planning Conference Co-Chairs.


Alisha Winterswyk is a partner in the Environmental and Natural Resources practice group at Best Best & Krieger LLP.  She is a CEQA and land use lawyer that advises public and private clients on an array of environmental, planning and municipal laws.

Alisha’s practice is both transactional and litigation-based as she takes a “soup-to-nuts” approach to representing clients and in the development process. Over the past several years, Alisha has contributed to the UCLA Land Use Law and Planning Conference as a speaker and she is delighted to now serve as a co-chair for this fantastic event.


David Smith is a partner with Manatt, Phelps & Phillips and splits his time between the firm’s Orange County and San Francisco offices. Mr. Smith counsels land developers, conservation companies, for-profit and nonprofit organizations, and individuals at the intersection of law and government on land use entitlement, real estate development and regulatory compliance. He is frequently engaged in entitlement and permitting matters for development projects that are, or have the potential to be, particularly contentious and complicated.

Mr. Smith’s expertise includes all facets of land use and related regulatory compliance including the California Environmental Quality Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Water Act, climate change, the McAteer-Petris Act and California’s planning and zoning laws. In addition to his practice, Mr. Smith frequently speaks at law schools and conferences throughout the state.


Matthew Burris is the Deputy City Manager over Community and Economic Development for the City of Rancho Cucamonga. He has over 17 years of experience working with local government working for a variety of private sector firms as well as for local governments as an employee. Matt also served as a Planning Commissioner for California’s newest City of Jurupa Valley. In addition to his work in community development, Matt has regularly taught planning courses for both UC Berkeley and UC Riverside.

He is a Certified Planner, a LEED Accredited Professional, and holds a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Studies from UC Santa Barbara, as well as a Master of Science in City and Regional Planning and a Master of Science in Engineering from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Both Matt in his professional capacity, and many of the projects he has been instrumental in, have won state and national awards.

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Public Policy at UCLA Extension

For over 26 years, UCLA Extension has been training professionals in public policy through the annual Land Use Law and Planning Conference, CEQA seminars, as well as climate policy, education policy, health care policy, and food justice courses. 

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