Contact Information
San Bernardino Office
550 E. Hospitality Lane, Suite 300
San Bernardino, CA 92408
Tel: (909) 890-4499
Fax: (909) 890-9877
Email:

Practice Areas

  • Business & Corporate
  • Land Use, Mining & Water
  • Litigation

Education

  • J.D., Southwestern University School of Law, 1980
  • B.A., University of Northern Colorado, 1971

Bars

  • California, 1980
  • U.S. Supreme Court, 1984
  • U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, 1983
  • U.S. District Court of California, Central District, 1980
  • U.S. District Court of California, Southern District, 1985
  • U.S. District Court of California, Northern District, 1997
  • U.S. District Court of California, Eastern District, 2000
  • U.S. Tax Court, 1983

 

MICHAEL DUANE DAVIS

OF COUNSEL

Michael Duane Davis is of counsel and Vice President, and has represented businesses, individuals, and governmental clients in complex real estate and business transactions and litigation for nearly 40 years.  Mr. Davis has decades of experience evaluating water rights and resources and in water rights disputes, with an emphasis on groundwater basin adjudications, and has represented dozens of clients in the Mojave and Antelope Valley Groundwater Adjudications. He provides business and land use guidance and water resources management under the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, Urban Water Management Plans, Integrated Regional Water Management Plans, Water Supply Assessments, and Proposition 218.  

Mr. Davis has extensive experience serving as general counsel to numerous county water districts and mutual water companies.  As an editor and speaker for the California Water Law & Policy Reporter, he oversees monthly articles about water law and water rights.  Mr. Davis also represents clients in eminent domain litigation and inverse condemnation proceedings, organized real estate, and the organization and representation of business entities including nonprofit organizations.

Publications

  • Editor, California Water Law & Policy Reporter (Most recent articles are listed in following bullets)
  • “President Trump Issues Memorandum Calling for Streamlined Regulation and Greater Efficiency for Major Water Projects,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (December 2018), with Derek Hoffman
  • “Fifth District Court Finds Stanislaus County Groundwater Well Permitting Process Involves Discretionary Actions Triggering CEQA Requirements,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (November 2018), with Derek Hoffman
  • “The Multitude of Oversight for California’s Oroville Dam – Will This Become a Model for Dams Throughout the State and in the West?” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (November 2018)
  • “State Water Resources Control Board Hearings Draw Extensive Comments and Will Continue Over Bay-Delta Water Quality Control Plan,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (October 2018), with Derek Hoffman
  • “Colorado River Shortage Looms on the Horizon – Basin States Dodge Shortage Declaration, But for How Long?’” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (October 2018)
  • “Fifth District Court of Appeal Rejects Environmental Group’s Efforts to Drain Hetch Hetchy Reservoir and Restore Hetch Hetchy Valley,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (August/September 2018), with Paula Hernandez
  • “Governor Brown Signs Water Use Efficiency Laws, Beginning Yet Another Era of Statewide Water Regulation in Response to Drought,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (July 2018), with Derek Hoffman
  • “Legislation Introduced in Congress to Bar Judicial Review of California Waterfix – The Next Chapter in the Long Battle to Save the Delta and State Water Project,’” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (July 2018)
  • “Proposed Bill Seeks to Transfer Operation and Maintenance of the State Water Project From DWR to the ‘State Water Project Commission’,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (June 2018), with Paula Hernandez and Derek Hoffman
  • Feature Article: “Is Drought the ‘New Normal’ for California? Is It Time to Make Water Conservation a Permanent Way of Life?” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (June 2018), with Brent R. McManigal
  • “Ventura County Landowners File Suit – Seek First-Ever Comprehensive Groundwater Basin Adjudication in the SGMA Era,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (May 2018), with Derek Hoffman
  • “Lawsuit Invalidating Equitable Distribution lID for Colorado River Water Prompts IID to Rescind the Plan – What About the Drought Contingency Plan to Protect Lake Mead?” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (May 2018), with Paige H. Gosney
  • “First District Court Finds Reasonable Use Determination Requires Consideration of All Competing Water Users,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (April 2018), with Marlene Allen
  • “Southern California Saved a Record Amount of Water with Lawn Replacement,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (March 2018), with Brent McManigal
  • “Desalination Projects on Track to Receive Substantial Proposition 1 Grant Funding,” California Water Law & Policy Reporter© (March 2018), with Derek Hoffman

Affiliations

  • American Bar Association, Member (1978-present)
  • Apple Valley Chamber of Commerce, Member, (2008-present)
  • Association of California Water Agencies, Member (2001-present)
  • California Association of Realtors, Legal Affairs Committee, Member (1985-present)
  • Fox-Coates Daylight Lodge No. 842, F&AM of California, Master Mason (1997-present)
  • High Desert Bar Association, President (1983-1985), Director (1981-1985)
  • High Desert Community Foundation, President (2010-2014, 2015-2016), Vice President (2014-2015), Director (2004-Present)
  • Mitsubishi Cement Corporation Educational Foundation, Director (2005-Present)
  • Riverside County Bar Association, Member (2011-present)
  • Rotary Club of Victor Valley Sunrise, President (2001-2002), Director (2000-2006), Member (2000-Present)
  • Rotary International Foundation (1982-present); Paul Harris Fellow (1985-present); Paul Harris Society Member (2005-2007)
  • San Bernardino County Bar Association, Member (1980-present)
  • Southern California Mountains Foundation, (formerly San Bernardino National Forest Association), President (2010 to present), Vice President (2004-2010), Director (2003-Present)
  • State Bar of California, Member (1980-present), Business Law & Real Estate Law Sections
  • Technical Advisory Committee to the Mojave Water Agency, Vice Chairman (2003-2013)
  • Victor Valley Chamber Of Commerce, Director (1985-1986), Member (1983-present)

Presentations

  • 2015 California Water Law & Policy Conference – “Development, CEQA and Water Supply” with a focus on “The Drought – Water Supply Assessments and Urban Water Management Plans.”
  • Drought – Water Supply Assessments and Urban Water Management Plans, San Bernardino County Bar Association, Environmental Law Section, June 2015.

Representative Matters

  • One of the lead attorneys, representing 21 clients, in the Antelope Valley Groundwater Adjudication. The most complex groundwater adjudication in California history, it will provide for the management of the Antelope Valley Groundwater Basin in northern Los Angeles and southeastern Kern Counties.
  • One of the lead attorneys, representing over a dozen clients, in the Mojave Basin Groundwater Adjudication, that provides for the management of the Mojave Basin in northwestern San Bernardino County.
  • Co-counsel in EDF Renewable Energy, Inc., et al v. Mark Technologies Corporation, et al. in a breach of contract/declaratory relief action. Co-counsel lead attorney whose team assisted with and prepared numerous pre-trial, trial and post-trial motions, second chaired the trial and obtained a verdict that resulted in a judgment in excess of $16.250 million dollars, plus pre-trial interest and attorneys’ fees and costs.
  • Negotiated and drafted the multi-million-dollar telecommunications equipment and service agreement by which CONTEL (predecessor to GTE) first networked the County of San Bernardino.
  • Over 30 years experience representing County Water Districts, including Victor Valley Water District and Baldy Mesa Water District, prior to their acquisition by the City of Victorville as the Victorville Water Department.