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James Longtin has been a land use lawyer for over 50 years. During his public practice he was city attorney for Lompoc, Santa Maria, Thousand Oaks and La Quinta. His private practice included representation of all sides to land use litigation, including landowners and developers, environmental and preservationist groups, and public agencies.

Longtin has presented papers and seminars on land use subjects since 1972. In a 1974 publication he formally coined the term "land use" to include all controls relating to land regulation. In 1976 Longtin self-published his first edition entitled "California Land Use Regulations," which quickly became a cult classic among practitioners. Dissatisfied with its organization, Longtin wrote the current second edition in 1987, which now enjoys popularity as the preeminent legal text on land use.

Longtin discontinued active law practice in 1994. However, he continues to study land use and to update Longtin's Cal Land Use 2d annually. He also continues to reorganize and rewrite parts of the book, as necessary, to make it more useful to the reader.


James Longtin

Little-Known Non-Relevant
Tax Fact

Longtin invented the IRA/401k tax shelter concept. Here's how - In 1971, while city attorney of Lompoc, Longtin created the first ever plan to defer income tax on current earnings until retirement, which was based upon the inter-governmental tax immunity between federal and local government. After obtaining a favorable ruling from the IRS, Longtin presented his plan at a national conference of municipal law officers (Deferred Compensation for City Employees, 34 NIMLO Law Review 311 (1973)). The plan became wildly popular among state and local government employees, causing Congress to make the tax shelter available to the public as IRAs and 401k plans.


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