Jim Ross has been providing high-quality legal advice to public entities for over 30 years. Jim is a practical and effective lawyer with extensive experience in public agency law. He has served in county counsel offices for over 26 years. In 2023, Jim was recognized for his outstanding service by the County Counsel Association of California. During his career, Jim served as County Counsel, Assistant County Counsel, and Deputy County Counsel. Prior to years of working with counties, Jim served as a City Attorney and a Deputy City Attorney as well as providing legal advice to special districts. During his career, Jim has advised governing bodies and departments on the full range of legal issues faced by local government agencies.
Jim Ross’s practice focuses on advising public agencies in multiple areas of public law including general government agency advice, affirmative litigation, land use, public works, elections, and litigation oversight and management. He also has experience advising law enforcement agencies including correctional facilities.
Prior to joining Renne Public Law Group, Jim served in multiple roles in the Shasta County Counsel’s Office including serving as the County Counsel. During his county counsel career, he advised several county departments in areas of municipal law including, but not limited to, the county clerk/registrar of voters, the planning director, the public works director, the sheriff, the public guardian/conservator, and the health and human services director. Jim also advised the Shasta County Water Agency, Shasta County Housing Authority, and the Air Pollution Control Board. Jim counts among the highlights of his career with Shasta County his participating as a member of a statewide working and negotiating group of public agency lawyers working to resolve issues relating to the distribution of funds awarded to California from settlements in the Opioid litigation; navigating the resolution of an Americans with Disabilities lawsuit against an aging facility; and successfully litigating a complicated land use case involving the unlawful operation of a business.
Earlier in his career, Jim served in the Ventura County Counsel’s Office and the Sonoma County Counsel’s Office where he represented the Ventura County Fire Protection District and advised the Ventura County Human Services Agency. Jim has advised the Code Enforcement Division of the Sonoma County Permit & Resource Management Department and represented the Public Conservator/Guardian. In Sonoma County, he also advised on the formation of a Geological Hazard Abatement District which included a FEMA property acquisition program for landslide affected properties.
Jim began his career as an Associate of McDonough, Holland & Allen where he served as the Marysville City Attorney and served as a deputy city attorney for other cities including the City of Davis. During this time, he advised several special districts and other local entities. Jim was part of the trial team that successfully defended the City of Roseville against claims for damages including inverse condemnation claims arising out of historic flooding. Jim also co-authored the Amicus Curie brief in the case Lockin v. City of Lafayette (1994) 7 Cal.4th 327.
For most of his career, Jim has served as a county counsel, assistant county counsel and deputy county counsel. In these roles, Jim was responsible for:
- Providing legal advice and representation to more than 20 County of Shasta departments, including the county clerk/registrar of voters, the planning director, the public works director, the sheriff, the public guardian/conservator and the health and human services director.
- Providing legal advice and representation to various other agencies, boards or commissions and special districts including the Shasta County Water Agency, Shasta County Air Pollution Control Board, Shasta County Housing Authority, and the Ventura County Fire Protection District.
- Served as a representative on behalf of litigating cities and counties on a statewide working group and a negotiating group in the opioid litigation.
- Drafting ballot titles and summaries, as well as impartial analyses for local measures submitted to the electorate, including tax measures.
- Advised on prevailing wage requirements, leasing, disposition and acquisition of property and public works contracting.
- Presentations to various sections of the County Counsel’s Association on different topics including Lanterman-Petris-Short Act conservatorships, Propositions 218 and 26, land use and code enforcement, California Public Records Act, due process, conflicts, Govt. Code section 1090 and open meeting laws.
- Presentations to various local public agencies, boards, and commissions on open meeting requirement requirements of the Brown Act.
- Estill v. County of Shasta (2018) 25 Cal.App.5th 702
- Conservatorship of Lee C. (2017) 18 Cal.App.5th 1072
- Locklin v. City of Lafayette (1994) 7 Cal.4th 327 (amici curiae)
PRESS & AWARDS
- Recognition Award for Outstanding Service to the County Counsel’s Association of California
ADMISSIONS AND COURTS
- United States District Court for the Central District of California
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of California
- United States District Court for the Northern District of California
- University of California, Davis, J.D.
- California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, B.S.