Gregory J. Newmark
Gregory (Greg) Newmark represents local agencies in litigation and compliance matters regarding water quality, water rights, environmental contamination, inverse condemnation, brownfields, and First Amendment and other constitutional issues. He also advises public entities on land use laws, including the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and reviews environmental documents on his clients’ behalf. Greg has extensive litigation experience, including complex multi-party disputes.
Representing clients in a broad array of environmental and land use matters, he often serves as counsel in administrative permitting and enforcement proceedings before the State Water Resources Control Board and the California Regional Water Quality Control Board. He works closely with his clients and with water board staff and counsel to negotiate the terms of permits and orders. When necessary, he litigates administrative appeals and civil actions on behalf of waste discharge and NPDES permittees.
Greg has handled numerous cases involving groundwater contamination issues. These matters range from regulatory cleanup orders to cost recovery actions against responsible parties. Greg often strategizes with expert consultants to develop the best solution for each matter.
Prior to joining Meyers Nave, Greg was a Deputy Attorney General for the California Department of Justice. In this role, he represented natural resources agencies (e.g., the State Water Resources Control Board, the Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, the Department of Water Resources, and the Department of Fish and Wildlife) in trial court and appellate litigation regarding air and water pollution, inverse condemnation, CEQA, exotic species and endangered species, and fire suppression cost recovery.
As Deputy Attorney General, Greg presented oral argument in the first Clean Water Act case reviewed by the California Supreme Court (Burbank v. State Water Resources Control Board). He also argued the first California reported decision to adjudicate a challenge to the merits of a total maximum daily load (TMDL) under the Clean Water Act and California’s Porter-Cologne Water Quality Control Act (City of Arcadia, et al. v. State Water Resources Control Board, et al).
Greg received commendations from the State Water Resources Control Board and the California Regional Water Quality Control Board, Los Angeles Region, for his representation of those agencies in water quality litigation. The U.S. Department of Justice also commended him “for outstanding performance and invaluable assistance” in a water quality case.
Prior to joining the Attorney General’s Office, Greg represented nonprofit groups in environmental citizen suits under Proposition 65, NEPA, the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act. During law school, he served as a judicial extern to the Honorable A. James Robertson II in San Francisco Superior Court.
Greg is admitted to the U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, and the U.S. Northern, Eastern and Central district courts in California.
Honors and Awards
- Recipient, Certificate of Commendation, U.S. Department of Justice
Presentations and Publications
- Author, “Application of the California Construction Storm Water General NPDES Permit to Oil and Gas Projects,” The Override, September 15, 2010
- Moderator, "Storm Water Update: Two Decades Down the Drain?," Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite, 2010
- Speaker, "Southern California Stormwater Water Quality," Law Seminars International, 2010
- Speaker, "Federal and California Water Quality Regulation," Western Area Counsel Office Environmental Law Conference, 2010
- Instructor, “California Water Quality: An Introduction to Regulation under State and Federal Law,” Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite, 2009
- Panelist, Lorman Education Services, “Acquiring and Preserving Water Rights,” 2008
- Panelist, Sonoma County Bar Association, “The Perfect Stormwater: Where is the Finish Line for Urban Runoff Control?,” 2008
- Moderator, “Smelt Down: Endangered Species and Water Supply in Crisis,” Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite, 2008
- Panelist, “The Perfect Stormwater: Where is the Finish Line for Urban Runoff Control?,” City Attorneys Association of Los Angeles County Annual Conference, 2008
- Panelist, “Current Issues in Stormwater Regulation,” Lorman Education Services, Oakland, 2007
- Guest Lecturer, UCLA Environmental Law Clinic, "Municipal Sewage Spill Litigation," 2003
- Panelist, “Sewage Happens - Hot Environmental Legal Issues on the California Central Coast,” Santa Barbara, California, July 19, 2002 (discussion on application of state and federal water quality laws to sewage spills from municipal wastewater collection systems). [Transcript published at Environmental Law Section of the State Bar of California, "Sewage Happens" (Winter 2003) Environmental Law News, pp. 27-36.]
- Presenter, “Avoiding Legal Pitfalls When Investigating Forest Fire Cause and Origin,” Office of the State Fire Marshal, Sacramento, 2001
Professional and Community Affiliations
- Member, The State Bar of California
- Appointed by Board of Governors as Member, Executive Committee, The State Bar of California, Environmental Law Section
- Co-Chair, Legislation Committee, The State Bar of California, Environmental Law Section
- California Delegate, National Association of Attorneys General Clean Air Act Conference
- Associate Editor, Hastings West-Northwest Journal of Environmental Law and Policy
- Participant, Hastings Public Interest Law Foundation
- University of California, Hastings College of the Law, JD, 1997
- University of New Mexico, BA in History and minor in Biology, cum laude, 1994