Cynthia Burch is a practitioner in the regulatory, transactional and litigation arenas, concentrating her practice in several areas of administrative law, including environmental compliance and due diligence, compliance with NEPA and CEQA, land use permitting and public private partnerships. Ms. Burch has served as counsel for Southern California Edison, a major utility company; energy and chemical company clients including Shell, BP Amoco, ARCO and Conoco Phillips; transportation companies including BNSF Railway Company; and numerous manufacturing and retail facilities, developers and lenders.
Ms. Burch is a head of the firm's multidisciplinary practice servicing infrastructure and public private partnership projects. This integrated approach allows the group to deliver a complete set of services by drawing upon the experience of lawyers in the firm's leading practice areas, including corporate, project finance, public finance, real estate, environmental and land use.
Ms. Burch has obtained environmental land use permits, franchises, leases and variances for large industrial and commercial facilities, including power generating stations, refineries, cogeneration facilities, oil and gas fields and pipelines, retail facilities, logistic and transportation facilities, including port and intermodal facilities and quarries. She has led teams in the performance and defense of environmental impact statements and reports under both the National Environmental Policy Act and the California Environmental Quality Act in compliance with federal and state laws, and has assisted in the permitting and development of infrastructure projects, residential and commercial developments, and brownfields.
Ms. Burch has represented clients in the performance of due diligence and disclosures for the purchase, sale and financing of industrial facilities including generating stations, refineries, oil and gas production fields, pipelines, transportation facilities, including port and intermodal facilities, printing companies and paint manufacturers. She also performs due diligence and disclosures for transactions involving residential and commercial developments.
Additionally, Ms. Burch has extensive experience in contracting and guiding work with technical, government and public relations consultants in the preparation of environmental impact reports; the development, sale, leasing and permitting of industrial, energy, retail and transportation facilities, including port and intermodal facilities; real estate development projects; and the evaluation and performance of remediation activities of significant public import.
In representing potentially responsible parties at federal and state Superfund sites, Ms. Burch has negotiated remedial investigations, feasibility studies and remedies, clean-up orders and consent decrees. She has negotiated with the California Environmental Protection Agency (Cal/EPA) and related agencies the remediation of state Superfund sites in phases, allowing development to occur on portions of sites prior to remediation of the entire site. This innovative approach has had precedential impact statewide.
Ms. Burch conducts administrative hearings and public meetings before the US EPA and California state, regional and local governmental agencies, including Cal/EPA; state and regional water quality control boards; and local air districts, including the South Coast Air Quality Management District, the Coastal Commission, the California Energy Commission, the Public Utilities Commission, the California Air Resources Board, the State Board of Equalization and the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency. She has acted on behalf of clients in negotiating new and amended federal, state and local statutes, regulations, rules and policies concerning, for example, implementation of goods movement and major infrastructure initiatives, stimulus package applications, risk assessment, listing of toxic contaminants, air, groundwater, Superfund and consumer products.
Ms. Burch has represented clients in litigation involving injunctions against administrative orders; injunctions against state and local regulations; the compliance of major industrial facilities with NEPA and CEQA; the compliance of newly created environmental laws with the Administrative Procedure Act and CEQA; tort litigation; federal and state preemption and interference with interstate commerce; groundwater contamination; government contracts; and federal and state Superfund-related common law theories and contribution actions.
Ms. Burch is active in the area of project development, including large scale infrastructure and public private partnerships. She has chaired panels at the annual Public Private Partnerships USA Summit held in Washington, D.C., for which Katten has served as a sponsor. Ms. Burch and her partners assist in securing speakers from the US Department of Transportation and state DOTs, other state and local transportation authorities, and executives from the shipping, rail and construction industries.
Ms. Burch is also on the board of directors for FuturePorts, and a member of the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation and the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce.
Prior to joining Katten, Ms. Burch was a partner at Munger, Tolles and Olson. She earned her BA from the University of Kansas and her JD from Washburn University School of Law.