We have now learned that McDonough, Holland and Allen will close by September. The Sacramento Bee reported on Saturday, “The sagging economy apparently contributed to the imminent demise of a legal powerhouse in Northern California.”
It continued, “McDonough Holland & Allen PC, Sacramento’s second-largest law firm and a fixture in the local legal community for more than 55 years, said Friday that it intends to “wind down its operations sometime this fall.”
“At least five lawyers have made commitments to other firms in moves that have not been announced and 19 layers – including some of the firm’s top billers and rainmakers – are in serious talks about leaving.
A frenzy of discussions continued mid-week in board rooms, back rooms, restaurants and bars, but most sources clammed up in deference to senior partners trying to save the firm while others attempt to lure McDonough’s top talent.”
Also of note is the report that “a possible merger with Stoel Rives LLP failed, sources say, though Stoel appears to be wooing specific lawyers.”
The report goes on to say, “Stoel Rives is still talking to lawyers at McDonough, sources say, but managing partner Tim Taylor declined comment with an email that said the firm is exploring opportunities to ‘strengthen our presence and capabilities in California’ and ‘Sacramento will continue to be the focal point of our operations.'”
We note this, only because that is the same Tim Taylor who is President of the Davis Joint Unified School Board.
The bigger picture and story is what would happen to the city’s long time City Attorney Harriet Steiner. Steiner has been City Attorney of Davis since 1986 and she is a shareholder and member of the law firm.
According to her bio at the law firm, “Serving as City Attorney of Davis since 1986, Harriet assisted in the development of the City’s agricultural mitigation ordinance for farmland and habitat preservation and in the development of the City’s Affordable Housing Ordinance and its new Middle Income/Work Force Housing Inclusionary Housing Ordinance.”
Furthermore, she also “serves as general counsel to the Sacramento Metropolitan Cable Commission, which holds the cable television franchise for the county and the cities within the County of Sacramento. She also represents the City of Modesto on cable and telecommunications matters, as well as other local franchising entities. She has negotiated cable franchise renewals and transfers, franchises with cable overbuilders, and represented franchising entities in cable and wireless cellular tower litigation.”
—David M. Greenwald reporting