Devon B. Lincoln

Partner | Monterey
Tel: 831.646.1501
Fax: 831.646.1801
Vcard Bio

Devon B. Lincoln is a Partner in Lozano Smith's Monterey office and co-chair of the firm's Facilities and Business Practice Group. She is also involved in the firm’s Charter Schools Practice Group. After practicing international, environmental and transactional law in Washington, D.C., Ms. Lincoln relocated to California and joined Lozano Smith in 2003.

Drawing on her experience as a corporate attorney on large transactions, Ms. Lincoln focuses her practice on construction, bidding, solar projects and clean energy, general facilities and business issues, and matters involving charter schools, including charter school governance and facilities issues and creating dependent charter schools. She also coordinates the firm's Client News Brief Program.

Presenter Experience
Ms. Lincoln has presented at numerous Lozano Smith Facilities and Business Consortia on topics such as "A Primer on Paper Cuts: Document Retention, The Public Records Act, The Brown Act and Email" and "What To Do When Third Parties Come Knocking To Use School Facilities," and the Webinar, "Going Green and Conserving Energy." She has also presented at the California Association of School Business Officials (CASBO) Annual Conference on technology legal issues facing school districts, the Small School Districts Association (SSDA) and the California School Boards Association (CSBA) conferences on charter school matters. Ms. Lincoln recently presented a webinar in collaboration with CASBO on the topic of How Understanding the Private Financing of Public Agency Solar Transactions Can Get You a Better Deal.

Ms. Lincoln received her law degree from the University of California, Berkeley, Boalt Hall School of Law in 1999. She was a visiting student at Georgetown University Law Center. She earned a B.A. degree in English and Political Science from Columbia University in 1996.

Mandatory Prequalification on Certain School District Projects is Here to Stay

By: Devon LincolnAlyse Pacheco Nichols-

November 2018 Number 73 California has extended a school district prequalification requirement that was nearing sunset. Prequalification of general contractors and mechanical, electrical, and plumbing engineers on certain school district projects has been mandatory since January 1, 2015. Specifically, under Public Contract Code section 20111.6, prequalification is required on all lease-leaseback projects and on other school district public works projects when all three of the following fa...

New Law Indefinitely Extends Community College Use of Best Value Process in Bidding

By: Devon LincolnAlyse Pacheco Nichols-

November 2018 Number 74 An expiring law allowing special bidding procedures for community college districts has been amended and extended. Although competitive bidding is the default rule for procurement of personal property and non-construction related services by community college districts and other public agencies, under Public Contract Code section 20651.7, a community college district is allowed to award bids on the basis of "best value," if the district determines that it can expec...

New Law Updates Bidding Preferences for Various Public Agencies

By: Devon LincolnAlyse Pacheco Nichols-

November 2018 Number 75 The Legislature has significantly expanded local agencies' ability to use a small business preferences on a public works projects, and has expanded the use of preferences for small businesses, disabled veterans businesses and social enterprises in some counties. This new law seems to indicate the Legislature is responding to the desire of local agencies to support local businesses. Assembly Bill (AB) 2762, signed by Governor Jerry Brown, increases the small busi...

New Law Could Reduce Public School Energy Costs

By: Devon LincolnTravis Cochran-

November 2018 Number 69 A new law aims to reduce the high costs public schools pay for energy. Throughout California, K-12 schools are spending a significant portion of their general fund-nearly $700 million-just to keep the lights on. This amount is nearly equal to what public schools dedicate to books and supplies for students. Assembly Bill (AB) 2068 seeks to reduce energy costs in the future by requiring public utilities to evaluate and report the feasibility and economic impacts of e...

New Law Eases Path to School Employee Housing

By: Harold FreimanDevon LincolnLauren Kawano-

February 2018 Number 5 As a result of California's affordable housing crisis, school districts face challenges in retaining teachers and school district employees, particularly in regions with high housing costs. California lawmakers sought to address the problem by proposing Assembly Bill (AB) 1157 and AB 45 to make it easier for districts to promote housing development for district employees, though Governor Jerry Brown vetoed the latter bill. AB 1157 was part of a package of 15 hous...

Lead-Safe Schools Protection Act: The Continuing Duty to Address Lead

By: Devon Lincoln-

October 2017 Number 61 Schools, colleges and other local and state agencies have a continuing obligation to address lead in the course of new construction, modernization and maintenance projects. Various provisions of California law found in the Lead-Safe Schools Protection Act, the Health and Safety Code and Title 17 of the California Code of Regulations ban the use of materials containing lead in new construction and require that public agencies use properly trained and certified person...

Paper Laws, Electronic Records: An Overview of Record Retention Laws for California School Employees

By: Devon LincolnRyan Tung-

Now that the California Supreme Court has directly addressed the universe of records accessible under the Public Records Act, it is more important than ever that school district employees and elected officials familiarize themselves with their obligations in retaining school district records to ensure that emails, texts and other electronic communications made or stored in private devices and accounts are maintained in accordance with these obligations. This article outlines California regul...

Lawmakers Extend Deadline for Proposition 39 Energy Efficiency Funding and Create New Program

By: Devon Lincoln-

July 2017 Number 42 State lawmakers have extended the deadlines to apply for and encumber money dedicated to energy efficiency projects at schools and community colleges - the program known as Proposition 39 - and have created a new program to fund such projects indefinitely. Proposition 39 was scheduled to sunset June 30, 2018. Now, Senate Bill (SB) 110 has extended the deadline for encumbering Proposition 39 funds by one year, to June 30, 2019. At the same time, the bill creates the ...

Governor Signs Bill Limiting Design Professionals' Duty to Indemnify Against Liability

By: Devon LincolnJennifer Grant-

May 2017 Number 24 The law regarding what obligations a design professional may assume to defend and indemnify a client against liability has been amended once again, and the resulting changes will affect the terms that can be included in design professionals' contracts. On April 28, 2017, Governor Jerry Brown signed into law Senate Bill (SB) 496, which partially limits the duty of design professionals to defend and indemnify a client against liability for claims arising from a design pro...

Public Agency Notification Requirements under the Information Practices Act

By: Devon LincolnEllen Denham-

This article was featured in the Spring 2017 Issue of Lozano Smith's TIPJar State and federal law generally require agencies to protect the privacy of students, families and employees. Statutes like the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g) and Education Code section 49073 prohibit the unauthorized disclosure of student records. In recent years, the California Information Practices Act of 1977 (Civ. Code, § 1798, et seq.) was amended to address the...

Agency Case Study: Lessons from a Real-Life Cyberattack

By: Devon LincolnTravis Cochran-

This article was featured in the Spring 2017 Issue of Lozano Smith's TIPJar The Lindsay Unified School District, a K-12 school district that serves over 4,000 students in California's San Joaquin Valley, knows firsthand what a ransomware attack looks like: The district recently experienced one, when attackers infected servers through phishing emails that looked like legitimate communications. Fortunately, the district had policies and procedures in place that minimized the attack's effects...

School District Bid Threshold Raised for 2017

By: Devon Lincoln-

December 2016 Number 88 According to the California Department of Education Office of Financial Accountability and Information Services, pursuant to Public Contract Code section 20111(a), the bid threshold for K-12 school districts' purchases of equipment, materials, supplies and services (except construction services) has been adjusted to $88,300, effective January 1, 2017. This represents an increase of 0.626 percent over the 2016 bid limit. The notice may be viewed here. The Califor...

New Claims Resolution Process Will Apply to All Public Contracts Effective January 1, 2017

By: Devon LincolnKelly Rem-

October 2016 Number 83 Effective January 1, 2017, a new claims resolution process will be required for all public works projects. On September 29, 2016, Governor Jerry Brown approved Assembly Bill (AB) 626, which adds section 9204 to the Public Contract Code. The law is aimed at assisting contractors in enforcing claims against public agencies. Currently, the law requires public agencies to follow a certain claims process for claims that are $375,000 or less. Section 9204 will apply to all c...

California Court Rules that Charter Schools Generally Cannot Locate Outside of Their Authorizing School District’s Boundaries

By: Megan MacySloan SimmonsDevon LincolnEdward Sklar-

October 2016 Number 79 In a case watched closely by the charter school community - including school districts, county offices of education and charter operators - California's Third District Court of Appeal has issued an opinion which holds that the geographic and site limitations of the Charter Schools Act (Ed. Code, § 47600 et seq.) are applicable to all charter schools, including "nonclassroom-based" programs. (Anderson Union High School District v. Shasta Secondary Home School (O...

Legislature Imposes New Procedures for Selection of Lease-Leaseback Contractors

By: Devon LincolnArne Sandberg-

September 2016 Number 63 Scrutiny regarding school districts' use of lease-leaseback (LLB) construction contracts has prompted the Legislature to impose additional contracting requirements that will make the use of LLB more complicated, and will limit a school district's discretion in selecting the LLB contractor. Assembly Bill (AB) 2316, which the Governor signed on September 23, 2016, will require school districts to use a comprehensive "best value" selection process for LLB contractors. A...

California Energy Commission Sets Eligibility Deadline for Proposition 39 Funds

By: Devon LincolnShawn VanWagenen-

August 2016 Number 52 Local educational agencies (LEAs) must act soon to be eligible for funding under the Proposition 39 program. The California Energy Commission (CEC) stated earlier this month that energy expenditure plans (EEPs) will not be accepted after August 1, 2017. That leaves less than one year for LEAs to complete their EEPs. The California Clean Energy Jobs Act, enacted by voter initiative (Prop 39) in 2012, provides funds to all LEAs in California for a variety of energy ...

California Energy Commission Makes Project-Friendly Changes to Proposition 39 Program Guidelines

By: Devon LincolnTravis Cochran-

July 2016 Number 40 On June 27, 2016, the California Energy Commission (CEC) issued a new set of proposed Proposition 39 Program Implementation Guidelines (guidelines). The proposed guidelines include a number of project-friendly changes, including a reduction in the Savings-to-Investment Ratio (SIR). These proposed guidelines are expected to be approved at the CEC's general business meeting on July 13, 2016. The California Clean Energy Jobs Act, commonly referred to as the Proposition...

Solar Energy Gets Two Important New Year Boosts

By: Devon LincolnShawn VanWagenen-

February 2016 Number 10 The future of solar energy projects for public agencies looks bright, as two important incentives expected to expire at the end of the year have instead been renewed. Specifically, the federal Solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), which supports most power purchase agreements (PPAs), was set to expire December 31, 2016. In addition, by most estimates, the current Net Energy Metering program that the investor-owned utilities have up until now offered to their public ag...

New Bill Overhauls the Design-Build Construction Delivery Method for School Districts

By: Devon LincolnTravis Cochran-

November 2015 Number 71 Although the 'design-build' construction delivery method has been available to California school districts for several years, this method has been used somewhat infrequently, as districts have opted for more traditional construction methods, like design-bid-build (Public Contract Code § 20111,et seq.), or alternatives like lease-leaseback (Education Code § 17406). The Legislature recently amended the current laws governing the design-build method for scho...

New Bill Makes Significant Revisions to Prequalification, Lease-Leaseback, and Lease-to-Own Statutes

By: Devon LincolnArne Sandberg-

September 2015 Number 51 In a year when lease-leaseback agreements have been a hot topic, a new bill makes prequalification mandatory for all lease-leaseback and lease-to-own agreements by school districts having more than 2,500 average daily attendance (ADA), and makes other significant changes to school construction law. Commencing in 2012, Public Contract Code section 20111.6 made prequalification mandatory for school district public projects where three criteria were met: (1) a pro...

Supreme Court Denies Review of Lease-Leaseback Case

By: Megan MacyDevon Lincoln-

August 2015 Number 48 In a closely watched case, the California Supreme Court has denied petitions for review of the opinion in Davis v. Fresno Unified School District (June 1, 2015) case no. F068477 (5th App. Dist.). The Court has also denied requests for depublication of the case by the school district and various statewide organizations interested in the outcome. This means that a lawsuit will be allowed to proceed against a particular lease-leaseback arrangement that is similar to man...

It's An E-World: Governing in the Electronic Age

By: Harold FreimanDevon LincolnWilliam Curley IIIManuel Martinez-

March 2015 Number 17 Technology often outpaces the law. Lozano Smith attorneys have emphasized this point at numerous presentations on technology legal issues over the past decade. Occasionally, the Legislature tries to catch up with changes in technology: in 2015, such legislative changes focused on school districts, which now must enact new policies on several fronts, as discussed below. However, the law on many other local government issues remains unsettled, and is not likely to be cl...

Legislature Expands What Community Colleges Can Charge for Use of Their Facilities

By: Devon LincolnClaudia Weaver-

October 2014 Number 81 Until recently, community college districts have not been permitted to charge organizations a share of the costs associated with maintenance and normal "wear and tear" incurred during the use of college facilities and grounds under the Civic Center Act. However, on August 21, 2014, Governor Brown signed into law Assembly Bill (AB) 1906, expanding the types of "direct costs" that community college districts may charge for the use of college facilities or grounds. Eff...

Lease-Leaseback Contractors and Subcontractors Must Prequalify

By: Devon Lincoln-

September 2014 Number 71 One day after the Court of Appeals affirmed the legitimacy of school districts entering into lease-leaseback contracts under Education Code section 17406 without public bidding (See 2014 Lozano Smith Client News Brief No. 62), the Governor signed into law a bill requiring prequalification for lease-leaseback contractors in certain circumstances. Since January 1, 2014, school districts with an average daily attendance of at least 2,500 have been required to prequal...

The Energy Commission Adopts Proposition 39 Guidelines: Prohibition on "Sole Source" Contracts Creates Confusion

By: Devon Lincoln-

January 2014 Number 2 On December 19, 2013 the California Energy Commission unanimously approved the Proposition 39: California Clean Energy Jobs Act - 2013 Program Implementation Guidelines, moving educational agencies one step closer to receiving Proposition 39 funding. Unfortunately, the Guidelines do not resolve growing confusion regarding how contracts with design professionals, energy consultants, contractors and others should be awarded in order to qualify for Proposition 39 fundin...

Did Your School District Receive a Prop. 39 Request Today?

By: Devon LincolnEdward SklarManuel Martinez-

November 2013 Number 78 Commonly referred to as Prop. 39, Education Code section 47614 requires that school districts provide facilities to charter schools. Charter schools must request facilities for the 2014-2015 school year, in writing, by Friday, November 1, 2013. Even proposed charter schools can request facilities if they submit a timely request and have their charter approved by March 15, 2014. Once a school district receives a facilities request from a charter school, the follo...

REMINDER: School Districts Must Prequalify Contractors on Certain Projects Beginning 2014

By: Megan MacyDevon Lincoln-

September 2013 Number 55 Adding to the complexity of shepherding a project through public bidding, school districts will soon be required to prequalify bidders on many projects. Lozano Smith has prepared the tools to navigate the impact of this new law. More details and additional guidelines on prequalification rules will be discussed during Lozano Smith's free webinar on Thursday, September 19, 2013 at 10:00 a.m. School districts with an average daily attendance of 2,500 or more award...

Charter School Prop 39 Facilities Requests are Due November 1

By: Edward SklarDevon Lincoln-

October 2012 Number 74 Commonly referred to as Prop. 39, Education Code section 47614 requires that school districts provide facilities to charter schools. Charter schools must request facilities for the 2013-2014 school year, in writing, by Thursday, November 1, 2012. Even proposed charter schools can request facilities if they submit their request by November 1, 2012 and have their charter approved by March 15, 2013. Once a school district receives a facilities request from a charter...

Policy Options For Retaining Email Records

By: Harold FreimanDevon LincolnDarren Kameya-

October 2012 Number 63 The use of email and other electronic communication between school administrators, professional staff, employees and the public has increased tremendously, raising complex issues with respect to communication, creation of information and systems, and retrieval and storage of electronic records. School districts often experience confusion over which content should be retained or destroyed according to existing district policies and regulations and disclosure rules un...

Parents May Now Elect to Receive Annual Notice of Parental Rights and Responsibilities Electronically

By: Devon Lincoln-

July 2012 Number 39 Starting in January 1, 2013, parents may elect to receive an electronic version of their school district's annual notice of parental rights and responsibilities, which is distributed at the beginning of each school year. In an effort to cut down on printing and distribution costs, Assembly Bill (AB) 2262 amends Education Code section 48981 to allow a parent or guardian to opt to receive an electronic version of the annual notice. For parents or guardians who do not ...

Supreme Court Decision Eliminates Redevelopment Agencies: What Is The Impact On School Funding?

By: Harold FreimanDevon Lincoln-

January 2012 Number 06 In connection with approval of the state budget for fiscal year 2011-2012, the California Legislature enacted two bills addressing redevelopment agencies. ABX1 26 suspended all redevelopment activities and scheduled dissolution of redevelopment agencies. ABX1 27 would have allowed redevelopment agencies to remain in existence by agreeing to pay an amount set by formula to their county auditor-controllers for distribution to other taxing entities, including schools....

California Schools Will Compete To Become Nationally Recognized Green Ribbon Schools

By: Devon Lincoln-

January 2012 Number 04 The California Department of Education (CDE) has announced that California schools are now eligible to apply for the Green Ribbon Award from the U.S. Department of Education. Schools must be nominated by state education officials and do not apply directly to the U.S. Department of Education. California will select up four state nominees to compete for the national Green Ribbon Award. Green Ribbon Schools are part of a comprehensive federal policy for schools that...

Charter School is Liable for Failing to Provide Special Education Services

By: Devon LincolnClaudia Weaver-

January 2012 Number 03 In a recent decision issued by the California Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH), an administrative law judge (ALJ) ruled that a charter school was liable for failing to provide a special education student with needed transition services. ( Student v. Horizon InstructionalSystemsCharterSchool (2012) OAH Case No. 2011060763.) The case is noteworthy because the charter school, which provided an independent study program, was operating as its own local educational...

Attorney General Addresses Scope Of Brown Act Exception For Closed Session Discussions About Real Estate Negotiations

By: Harold FreimanDevon Lincoln-

December 2011 Number 86 On December 27, 2011, the California Attorney General issued an opinion addressing what matters may be discussed in closed session under the Brown Act's exception for real estate negotiations. (__ Ops.Cal.Atty.Gen. __ (2011, Op. No. 10-206.)) While the Attorney General opinion concluded that this exception is relatively narrow, thus potentially limiting what may be addressed in closed session, it also recognized the reality that discussion of certain topics should ...

California Solar Incentive Program Expanded

By: Devon Lincoln-

October 2011 Number 52 Dispelling concerns that state incentives for public agency solar electricity projects might evaporate, the governor has signed legislation increasing the amount the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) can allocate to that purpose. Senate Bill (SB) 585, signed by Governor Brown on September 22, 2011 at an elementary school inFowlerUnifiedSchool District, increases the size of the California Solar Initiative (CSI) by $200 million. Created in 2007, CSI is a ...