Jeffrey A. Walter
Filed under: Bay Area, North State
Jeffrey Walter has specialized in public agency law for almost 40 years. He recently retired as the City Attorney for the cities of Martinez (after 38 years), Novato (after 29 years) and Sonoma (after 13 years). He previously served as City Attorney of Benicia (1985-1992); Cotati (1981-2007); and the Town of Corte Madera (1988-2015). He also serves as special counsel to the Sonoma County Civil Service Commission representing the Commission in its disciplinary hearing proceedings. He has represented other districts and agencies.
His practice focuses on all aspects of municipal law, including land use regulation, local taxation, development fees, elections, initiatives and referenda, and cannabis regulations. Jeffrey has been actively involved in a variety of public law issues and has presented at conferences and seminars.
Jeffrey has been actively involved in the advancement of the legal profession, having served as the President of the Sonoma County Bar Association and co-founder of the Sonoma County Young Lawyers Association. He has served as one of Sonoma County Bar Association’s delegates to the State Bar conventions and was a member of the California Trial Lawyers Association.
Giving back to his local community is important to Jeffrey. He has served as President of the Board of Directors of the Sonoma Valley Mentoring Alliance, a non-profit organization providing over 450 mentors to at-risk children in Sonoma Valley. He was a former chair and member of the Sonoma County Planning Commission and director or member of a variety of other non-profit organizations, including the Sonoma Valley Education Foundation, the Sonoma Valley Chamber of Commerce, and the Valley of the Moon Recreation and Park District. He hosted KFTY-TV’s (Channel 50) “Forum 50 – You and the Law” program.
Jeffrey graduated cum laude from Claremont McKenna College (BA 1970) and received his law degree from the University of Santa Clara (JD 1974, graduating magna cum laude). While in law school, he was an articles editor of the Santa Clara Law Review. Jeffrey was an extern law clerk to the Honorable Stanley Mosk (deceased), Associate Justice of the California Supreme Court, and was law clerk to the Honorable Spencer Williams, U.S. District Court Judge, Northern District of California (1974-1976). In 2009, Jeffrey received the Martindale-Hubbell AV Preeminent Rating, the highest possible rating from members of the bar and judiciary: a rating he retains to the present time. In 2010, 2011, 2020, 2021 and 2022, he was recognized as one of Northern California’s Super Lawyers.
Jeffrey published various articles pertaining to legal issues and is a co-author of the Solano Press book entitled “Ballot Box Navigator.”
- Constitutional Issues
- Marijuana Taxation and Regulation
- Public Works Contracting
- Real Estate
- Land Use Planning and CEQA
- Public Law
- Conflicts of Interest
- Brown Act
- Citroen v. Town of Corte Madera (11/14/02), 2002 WL 31521732
- Town of Corte Madera v. Yasin (7/25/02), 2002 WL 1723997
- Doers v. Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District, (1979) 23 C.3d 1980
- Donnellen v. City of Novato, (2001) 86 Cal.App.4th 1097
- Cotati Alliance for Better Housing v. City of Cotati, et al. (1983) 148 C.A.3d 280, 195 C.R. 825
- 152 Valparaiso, et al. v. City of Cotati, et al. (1997) 56 Cal.App.4th 278, 65 Cal.Rptr.2d 551
- City of Cotati v. Cashman (2002) 29 Cal.4th 69
- Cashman v. City of Cotati (9th Cir. 2005) 415 F.3d 1027
- MCCE Development, LLC v. City of Novato (6/17/09), 2009 WL 1695943
- Transparent Gov Novato v. City of Novato (2019) 34 Cal.App.5th 410