Please note:

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Job Posting: Attorney III

CA Coastal Commission

Attorney III

$9,976.00 - $12,798.00 per Month

Final Filing Date: Until Filled

Job Description and Duties

The California Coastal Commission (Commission) is seeking an experienced attorney to join its Legal Division. The Commission is a small State agency that has regulatory and planning authority over development in the California coastal zone. The mission of the Commission is to provide for the balanced use of the coastal zone and to protect, restore, and enhance coastal and marine resources for the continuing benefit of current and future generations. Employees at the Commission enjoy working on a broad range of issues to plan for and manage coastal land uses while protecting important coastal resources including wetlands, habitats that support rare and endangered species, scenic landscapes and views to the sea, public shoreline access and recreational opportunities. The Commission’s staff includes dedicated planners, scientists, attorneys and administrative staff. The Legal Division is located at the Commission’s Headquarters Office at the edge of San Francisco’s Financial District. The Commission has district offices in San Diego, Long Beach, Ventura, Santa Cruz and Arcata.

The Commission’s Legal Division currently includes eight full-time and one half- time attorney positions, including the Chief Counsel. Attorneys and Attorney IIIs advise the staff and the Commission on a wide variety of legal issues, including the more complex issues arising under the California Coastal Act, the Federal Coastal Zone Management Act, the California Environmental Quality Act, the Subdivision Map Act, real property law, the U.S. Constitution, and numerous other state and federal laws. Attorney IIIs are expected to be experts in these areas of the law and to be able to work with broad discretion and independence with minimum supervision. The position will be filled in San Francisco, although part-time remote work would be considered. There may be occasional travel to other parts of the State.

Assignments will include providing legal advice and assistance to Commission management and to the Commission’s district offices and programmatic divisions on complex questions concerning the Coastal Act, Commission regulations, planning and zoning, and environmental and real property law and working with the Attorney General’s Office on litigation-related matters. Attorney III assignments may include providing advice to Commission staff and applicants regarding the generation, recordation, and analysis of deed restrictions, easements, offers to dedicate easements, and other recorded documents. Attorney IIIs may also be responsible for the review and analysis of planning staff’s recommendations, research and preparation of legal opinions for both Commission staff and the Commission, and advising Commission staff about legal requirements for coastal development permits, local coastal programs, enforcement actions, federal consistency review and related matters. It is not currently anticipated that the attorney will represent the Commission in litigation, although the attorney may represent the Commission in administrative proceedings and participate in preparing documents for court.

Minimum Requirements

You will find the Minimum Requirements in the Class Specification.

Additional Documents

Position Details

Job Code #:
Position #(s):
Working Title:
Attorney III
$9,976.00 - $12,798.00
# of Positions:
Work Location:
San Francisco County
Job Type:
12 Month Limited Term - Full Time

Department Information

The Commission values diversity at all levels of the organization and is committed to fostering an environment in which employees from a variety of backgrounds, cultures, and personal experiences are welcomed and can thrive. We believe the diversity of our employees and their unique perspectives and ideas inspire innovative solutions to further our mission of protecting and enhancing California’s coast and ocean for present and future generations.

Application Instructions

Dates printed on Mobile Bar Codes, such as the Quick Response (QR) Codes available at the USPS, are not considered Postmark dates for the purpose of determining timely filing of an application.

Final Filing Date: Until Filled

Who May Apply

Individuals who are currently in the classification, eligible for lateral transfer, eligible for reinstatement, have list eligibility, are in the process of obtaining list eligibility, or have SROA and/or Surplus eligibility (please attach your letter, if available). SROA and Surplus candidates are given priority; therefore, individuals with other eligibility may be considered in the event no SROA or Surplus candidates apply.

Applications will be screened and only the most qualified applicants will be selected to move forward in the selection process.
Applicants must meet the Minimum Qualifications stated in the Classification Specification(s).

How To Apply

Complete Application Packages (including your Examination/Employment Application (STD 678) and applicable or required documents) must be submitted to apply for this Job Posting. Application Packages may be submitted electronically through your CalCareer Account at When submitting your application in hard copy, a completed copy of the Application Package listing must be included. If you choose to not apply electronically, a hard copy application package may be submitted through an alternative method listed below:

Address for Mailing Application Packages

You may submit your application and any applicable or required documents to:

CA Coastal Commission
Attn: Human Resources
455 Market St. Suite 228
San Francisco, CA 94105

Address for Drop-Off Application Packages

You may drop off your application and any applicable or required documents at:

CA Coastal Commission
Human Resources
455 Market St. Suite 228
San Francisco, CA 94105
08:00 AM - 05:00 PM

Required Application Package Documents

The following items are required to be submitted with your application. Applicants who do not submit the required items timely may not be considered for this job:

  • Current version of the State Examination/Employment Application STD Form 678 (when not applying electronically), or the Electronic State Employment Application through your Applicant Account at All Experience and Education relating to the Minimum Qualifications listed on the Classification Specification should be included to demonstrate how you meet the Minimum Qualifications for the position.
  • Resume is required and must be included.
  • Degree and/or School Transcripts
  • Other - Cover Letter
  • Other - A minimum of three references
  • Other - Legal writing sample (5 pages or less)
Applicants requiring reasonable accommodations for the hiring interview process must request the necessary accommodations if scheduled for a hiring interview. The request should be made at the time of contact to schedule the interview. Questions regarding reasonable accommodations may be directed to the EEO contact listed on this job posting.

Desirable Qualifications

In addition to evaluating each candidate's relative ability, as demonstrated by quality and breadth of experience, the following factors will provide the basis for competitively evaluating each candidate:

We’re looking for an attorney with excellent research, writing, communication and analytical skills, who exercises sound judgment and enjoys working both independently and as part of a team. Attorneys are expected to be rigorous and pro-active in identifying issues and creative in problem- solving. Three to five years of experience in land use law, environmental permitting, real estate transactions, litigation, or a closely related practice is strongly preferred. Advanced knowledge of the Coastal Act is highly desirable.


Benefit information can be found on the CalHR website and the CalPERS website.

Contact Information

The Hiring Unit Contact is available to answer questions regarding the position or application process.

Hiring Unit Contact:
Louise Warren, Chief Counsel
(415) 904-5227

Please direct requests for Reasonable Accommodations to the interview scheduler at the time the interview is being scheduled. You may direct any additional questions regarding Reasonable Accommodations or Equal Employment Opportunity for this position(s) to the Department's EEO Office.

EEO Contact:
Melanie Wong
(415) 904-5433
California Relay Service: 1-800-735-2929 (TTY), 1-800-735-2922 (Voice) TTY is a Telecommunications Device for the Deaf, and is reachable only from phones equipped with a TTY Device.


This is a 12 month limited-term position with the possibility of extension or becoming permanent.

Equal Opportunity Employer

The State of California is an equal opportunity employer to all, regardless of age, ancestry, color, disability (mental and physical), exercising the right to family care and medical leave, gender, gender expression, gender identity, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, military or veteran status, national origin, political affiliation, race, religious creed, sex (includes pregnancy, childbirth, breastfeeding and related medical conditions), and sexual orientation.

It is an objective of the State of California to achieve a drug-free work place. Any applicant for state employment will be expected to behave in accordance with this objective because the use of illegal drugs is inconsistent with the law of the State, the rules governing Civil Service, and the special trust placed in public servants.

Application Methods:
Electronic (Using your CalCareer Account)
By Mail