D. Wayne Brechtel


Public Agency, Real Estate, Land Use & Environmental Law

D. Wayne Brechtel has focused his practice on real property and public agency matters for more than twenty years.  Mr. Brechtel understands that legal representation is about problem solving and that each client has unique issues and goals.  Mr. Brechtel works with each client to help them identify what is required and chart a path to reach the finish line.

Mr. Brechtel assists with all aspects of land purchase and sale transactions and helps clients prepare and understand land use and real estate documents, such as purchase agreements, easements, deed restrictions, CC&Rs and title insurance policies.  He also helps landowners successfully navigate the complex rules and regulations of local and regional agencies, including cities, counties, the California Coastal Commission, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the California State Lands Commission, the California Department of Fish and Game, and others. Mr. Brechtel frequently represents clients at public hearings and has appeared before most local agencies in San Diego County.

Mr. Brechtel’s litigation experience includes actions to resolve boundary, ownership, easement, real estate, homeowner association, landlord and contract disputes.  Mr. Brechtel has also litigated numerous complex land use and environmental cases.  For example, he successfully defended legal challenges to environmental impact reports for a 150-acre coastal wetlands restoration project in the San Dieguito River Valley in north San Diego and a mixed use development in the Whispering Palms community of Ranch Santa Fe.  On the other hand, Mr. Brechtel successfully prosecuted a legal challenge to an EIR for a proposed golf course development within habitat of the endangered Peninsular bighorn sheep.

Mr. Brechtel is General Counsel for the San Dieguito River Valley Regional Open Space Park Joint Powers Authority and the Leucadia Wastewater District. In this capacity, Mr. Brechtel assists with a wide range of legal matters, such as public works contracts, employment matters, conflict of interest rules for public officials, open meeting laws and compliance with the California Public Records Act.  Mr. Brechtel is special counsel for the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) with regard to the environmental review for the Mid-Coast trolley extension project.  Other current and past public agency clients include the San Elijo Joint Powers Authority, the North San Diego County Transit Development Board (NCTD), and the City of Chula Vista.

Mr. Brechtel has lectured and written on a variety of government, land use, and environmental law topics, including CEQA, the California Coastal Act, Endangered Species Act, Common Issues Between Adjacent Property Owners, Zoning and Land Use Law in California, and Public Trails. He is a member of the State and Local Government Law Section of the American Bar Association, and the Environmental Law and Public Law Sections of the California State Bar Association.

      - University of San Diego School of Law, J.D., 1989.
      - University of LaVerne, Bachelor of Science Degree in
        Business Administration, 1985.

   - American Bar Association, State and Local Government Law Section.
   - California State Bar Association, Environmental Law Section.
   - California State Bar Association, Public Law Section.