Sedina Banks is a Counsel in Greenberg Glusker’s Environmental Group. She has specialized in environmental compliance and litigation for 15 years. She counsels and represents a broad array of clients including property owners, municipalities and companies in a wide range of environmental matters related to contaminated properties, CEQA, water quality and air quality issues and real estate transactional support.
Sedina has represented clients in investigation, enforcement and remedial matters involving the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the California Regional Water Quality Control Boards and California air districts, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control and the California UST Fund.
She has successfully negotiated settlements on behalf of her clients for greatly reduced penalties in matters involving water quality and air quality violations, including the successful dismissal of an environmental criminal action. Sedina has also litigated in federal and state courts at all stages, including obtaining favorable verdicts for her clients in two federal jury trials.
She has been recognized as a Super Lawyers Rising Star for Southern California in Environmental Litigation (2009 – 2018).
- Southern California Super Lawyers Rising Stars, 2009-2018
- United States District Courts for the Central, Northern, Eastern and Southern Districts of California
- University of California, Davis School of Law (J.D., 2003)
- Claremont McKenna College (B.A., cum laude, 2000)
- Represented the owner and operator of a mobile home park in an administrative civil liability action brought by the Regional Water Quality Control Board, Los Angeles Region, for the alleged violation of certain Regional Board Orders. The client was potentially liable for almost $6 million in penalties and the prosecution was recommending $1.6 million in penalties in a heavily litigated case. After a lengthy administrative hearing, the Regional Board ruled that the client was only liable for a penalty of $54,500.
- Ongoing representation of the City of Culver City in connection with the regulation of oil and gas operations in the Inglewood Oil Field. Represented petitioner City of Culver City in City of Culver v County of Los Angeles, Los Angeles County Superior Court Case No. BS118023 in CEQA action challenging the County of Los Angeles’ approval of an EIR in connection with new regulations for oil and gas operations within the county. The litigation was settled and our client recovered much of its attorneys’ fees.
- Co-chaired a federal jury trial in which the jury found in our client’s favor based upon a violation of his federal civil right to equal protection of the laws under the United States Constitution in connection with a municipal open-bid process for the redevelopment of property.
- Co-chaired a federal jury trial in which we represented the owner of real property in the defense of a lawsuit brought by an adjoining landowner asserting claims under CERCLA, RCRA, negligence, nuisance and trespass to recover damages for alleged contamination resulting from migration of impacts from our client’s property. Obtained a jury verdict in client’s favor as to claims for negligence, public nuisance and trespass. Obtained judgment in favor of our client as to claims under CERCLA and RCRA following a bench trial.
- Has represented dairy trade groups for over a decade in multiple air quality matters including successfully representing respondent-intervenor Dairy Cares in Association of Irritated Residents v. EPA, Ninth Circuit Case No. 1373398, in defending EPA’s retroactive amendment of its 2004 approval of the San Joaquin Valley Unified Air Pollution Control District Rules into the California State Implementation Plan. The Ninth Circuit denied the petition (Ass’n of Irritated Residents v. EPA, 790 F.3d 934 (9th Cir. 2015)).
- Assists commercial/industrial clients in conducting environmental audits.
- Counsel clients in all aspects of environmental rulemakings including submission of comments.
- Obtained on behalf of various commercial/industrial clients no further action determinations for formerly contaminated properties.
- Intervened on behalf of dairy trade groups in litigation challenging regulation of dairies in the San Joaquin Valley resulting in a reported decision favorable to our clients. Ass’n of Irritated Residents v. San Joaquin Valley Unified Air Pollution Control Dist., 168 Cal.App.4th 535 (2008).
- Successfully represented the City of Culver City in defending an action brought by an oil company challenging the city’s issuance of a moratorium on all new drilling.
- Counsels clients on California Proposition 65 requirements and compliance.
- Ongoing representation of a mobile home park owner in dealings with regulatory agencies including the Regional Water Quality Control Board, Los Angeles Region and local municipality.
- Ongoing representation of former owners and operators of contaminated properties in dealings with regulatory agencies including the Regional Water Quality Control Board, Los Angeles Region.
- Represents a Fortune 500 company in a major CERCLA action in Southern California.
- Responds to EPA 104(e) requests for information.
- Represents petitioners in CEQA actions challenging agency actions.
- Obtained dismissal on behalf of a client of a criminal action brought by the Los Angeles County District Attorney for water quality violations.
- Represents a Fortune 500 company in cost recovery matters across the United States.
- Negotiated settlement on behalf of a client in a CERCLA action brought by the Environmental Protection Agency.
- Negotiated a settlement on behalf of a client of a claim brought by the South Coast Air Quality Management District for a nominal fine when over $100,000 in penalties were at issue.
- Represented intervenor dairy trade groups in defending Fresno County’s adoption of a zoning ordinance for the operation of commercial dairy and feedlot facilities from a CEQA challenge brought by the Medical Advocates for Healthy Air entitled Medical Advocates for Healthy Air, et al. v. County of Fresno, et al., Fresno County Superior Court Case No. 07CECG03844. The litigation settled.
- Obtained full reimbursement on behalf of a client from the California UST Fund for claims dating back to the 1990’s.