$300/Hour Is Reasonable Rate for Sonoma Practitioners.
Healdsburg Citizens For Sustainable Solutions v. City of Healdsburg, Case No. A130374 (1st Dist., Div. 4 June 4, 2012) (certified for partial publication; 1021.5 Trope fee discussion published and rest unpublished) involved the City’s appeal of $382,189.73 in fees awarded to CEQA winners, including an attorney who was a petitioner under Code of Civil Procedure section 1021.5, California’s private attorney general statute. (Petitioner attorney did provide services in the win.) The lower court reduced the fee claims by 40%, reflecting some limited success via losses on other claims and applying a 1.5 multiplier except no enhancement for petitioner attorney’s services.
The fee award was affirmed in a partially published opinion.
The published part of the opinion held that the Trope prohibition--disallowing fees to in pro per attorneys under certain circumstances--did not apply to this attorney/litigant in public interest litigation where fees were sought under section CCP § 1021.5.
The unpublished portion sustained the fee award after, among other things, determining that $300/hour was a reasonable rate for Sonoma litigators and that fees for amicus briefing should be allowed.
Bonus: City of Healdsburg website.