Law Practice

Jennifer Bragar’s practice is focused on land use, real estate, municipal and environmental law. She represents business, community and government entities in matters unique to land use planning and municipal law. She has appeared before the Land Use Board of Appeals and Oregon Court of Appeals, and is a frequent lecturer and author on Oregon land use law.

Jennifer has been involved with a number of significant cases in Oregon, including advocacy for a coalition of private property owners who challenged a Umatilla County ordinance that would have severely restricted land available for commercial wind facilities, as well as cases protective of farm and forest land. Further, Jennifer assists in obtaining entitlements for a range of projects including affordable housing, and negotiating development agreements for commercial and employment zoned properties in Oregon and Washington. She has represented multiple clients on hazardous waste cleanup actions arising under federal and state Superfund laws and represents firms developing natural resource mitigation projects. This work involved negotiations with federal and state regulators, cost recovery and contribution actions, the allocation of liability among private parties, and natural resource damage claims. Jennifer’s prior experience as a partner at a large northwest law firm further expands the depth of expertise at Tomasi Salyer Martin.

Before entering private practice, Jennifer founded JB Associates (1999-2003), a land use and political consulting firm in the Monterey Bay area providing services to clients around the central coast of California. She has worked closely with government agencies, developers and community activists to achieve balanced development proposals that satisfy the requirements of all participants in the review process. She has managed campaigns for the district attorney, other elected officials, and a variety of local Santa Cruz ballot measures.

Her experience and background serves clients well, providing first-hand perspective and understanding of the implications of the land use decision-making process in the local political arena. She offers clients a practical approach to dealing with their land use and real estate matters.

Recent Representative Matters

Land Use

  • Obtain entitlements for controversial affordable housing developments in Washington County , Salem, Lebanon, Lakeview, and City of Coos Bay, Oregon
  • Implications of solar on high value farmland  and forest land
  • Protection of resource land from non-resource designations

Condemnation and Eminent Domain

  • Land use strategy in connection with condemnation and urban growth boundary expansion
  • Negotiations related to transit projects

Real Estate

  • Assisted in high value land dispositions throughout Oregon and Southern Washington
  • Complex construction easements
  • Loan document review

Municipal Law             

  • Abandoned vehicle repossession procedures
  • Wild turkey control
  • Public records requests

Environmental Law

  • Advise on creation of environmental mitigation projects
  • Conservation Easements
  • Resolve DEQ enforcement matters

Natural Resources

  • Mule deer habitat
  • Water resources

Speaking Engagements

  • Affordable Housing Series, ABA State and Local Government Section, Webinars, January 13 and 20, 2021
  • Legal Issues Associated With Planning and Zoning Hearings in a Pandemic, American Planning Association, April 29 , 2020
  • Oregon’s End to Single Family Zoning and Plan for the Future: House Bills 2001 and 2003, ABA Fall Meeting, St. Paul, Minnesota, October 11, 2019
  • “Tiny Houses/RVs as a solution to Affordable Housing,” OAPA Legal Issues Workshop, Portland, OR , December 7, 2018
  • “Removing Zoning and other Barriers to Affordable Housing,” RE Conference, Salem, OR, October 23, 2018
  • “Uncovering the Need,” Oregon Tiny House Symposium, Albany, OR March 13, 2018
  • “The Search for Meaningful Goal 10 Findings,” Housing Land Advocates Conference, Portland, OR February 9, 2018
  • “Affordable Housing Update – A Panel Discussion,” The Seminar Group, Portland, OR, December 6, 2017
  • “Land Use Basics,” Multnomah Bar Association, Portland, OR, September 26, 2017
  • “Housing and the Americans with Disabilities Act,” Oregon Chapter of the American Planning Association, Legal Issues Conference, Portland, OR, December 2, 2016
  • “Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing in Oregon,” 2016 Oregon State Bar Government Law and RELU 2016 – What’s Going On?, Portland, OR, October 21, 2016
  • “Evolution in Case Law and Policy Under the Fair Housing Act’s Duty to Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing in Oregon and Beyond,” Oregon State Bar – 2016 Real Estate and Land Use Section Annual Summer Conference, Gleneden Beach, OR, August 13, 2016
  • “Regulating Murals,” Oregon Chapter of the American Planning Association, Legal Issues Conference, Portland, OR, December 4, 2015
  • “Take Notice: Thought-Provoking LUBA and Appellate Decisions from the First Quarter of 2015,” Euclid Society Program, Portland, OR, May 19, 2015
  • “Hot Topics in Land Use,” ABA State and Local Government Section, Spring Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, April 24, 2015
  • “Annual Land Use Case Law Update,” Public Interest Environmental Law Conference, Eugene, OR, March 6, 2015
  • Women of Wind Energy (WoWE) Transmission Breakfast Series, Transmission and Wind Integration 101, Portland, OR, October 15, 2013
  • “Land Use Legislative Update 2012,” RELU Annual Summer Conference, Salishan, OR, August 10, 2012
  • “I Read the Cases So You Don’t Have To: Land Use Case Law Update 2012,” Oregon County Counsel Association, Bend, OR, July 26, 2012
  • “Land Use Planning for Job Development,” Digging Deeper into Real Estate and Land Use CLE, Oregon State Bar’s Real Estate and Land Use Section, Portland, OR, November 16, 2011
  • “The Other Side of the River: Using Land Use Planning to Create a Regional Fair Share of Housing,” OR-WA APA Conference, Portland, OR, October 20, 2011
  • “Land Use Case Law Update,” Oregon County Counsel Association Annual Conference, Bend, OR, July 28, 2011
  • “Land Use Case Law Update,” Government Law Section, Oregon State Bar, Portland, OR, October 22, 2010
  • “Land Use Case Law Update,” 2010 Annual Meeting, Real Estate and Land Use Section, Oregon State Bar, Gleneden Beach, OR, August 13, 2010
  • “Measure 49 and the Little Guy,” Oregon County Counsel Association , Bend, OR, July 30, 2010
  • “Comprehensive Planning Law Update,” 2010 Spring Meeting, ABA Section of State and Local Government Law, Miami, FL, April 29, 2010
  • “Land Use Case and Legislative Review,” Oregon Chapter of the American Planning Association, Medford, OR, October 30, 2009

Publications

  • Zoning and Planning Deskbook, West Publishing Company, author since 2021.
  • “The West Coast’s Flexible Approach to the Open Meeting Laws in a Pandemic,” APA Planning and Law, Summer 2020.
  • “Meeting in the Middle,” American Planning Magazine, January 2019.
  • “Recent Developments in Comprehensive Planning (2016),” Urban Lawyer, Vol. 49, No. 3 Summer 2017.
  • “Recent Developments in Comprehensive Planning (2015),” Urban Lawyer, Vol. 48, No. 3 Summer 2016.
  • “Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum Spearheads New State Attorneys General Issues Committee,” ABA State & Local Law News, Volume 38, Number 4, Summer 2015.
  • “Recent Developments in Comprehensive Planning (2014),” Urban Lawyer, Vol. 46, No. 3 Summer 2014.
  • “Recent Developments in Comprehensive Planning (2013),” Urban Lawyer, Vol. 45, No. 3 Summer 2013.
  • “Recent Developments in Comprehensive Planning (2012),” Urban Lawyer, Vol. 44, No. 3 Summer 2012.
  • “Final Decision in Washington Land Use Matter Not Rendered Until Decision on Local Motion for Reconsideration Issues,” RELU Digest, November 2011.
  • “Measure 37 Claimants Seek Vested Rights Determinations,” RELU Digest, April 2011.
  • “No Changing the Goal Posts in New Jersey,” RELU Digest, September 2010.
  • “The Augean Stables: Measure 49 and the Herculean Task of Correcting an Improvident Initiative Measure in Oregon,” 46 Willamette L. Rev. 577, 2010.
  • “Local Aesthetic Regulations Can Trump the Federal Telecommunications Act,” Oregon Real Estate and Land Use Digest, Volume 32, No. 2, April 2010.
  • “Court of Appeals Determines Special Rights to Possession Enabled by Federal Land Grants to Railroads,” Oregon Real Estate and Land Use Digest, Volume 31, No. 4, September 2009.

Community Involvement & Personal

Jennifer is committed to public service and chooses to participate in organizations that promote equity in law and provide access to justice.  She is currently the President of Housing Land Advocates – an organization comprised of land use planners and lawyers who are committed to ensuring land is available for affordable housing across all Oregon jurisdictions.  She is  the Vice-Chair for the American Bar Association’s State and Local Government Section, and was 2016 Chair of the Oregon State Bar’s Real Estate and Land Use Section.

In her free time, Jennifer is playing hide and seek in the park with her daughter and husband, and exploring Oregon’s great outdoors.

Practice Groups

Education

Lewis & Clark Law School, J.D., cum laude, 2007

  • Environmental Law Certificate
  • Larry Kressel Memorial Award for Land Use Scholarship

University of California Santa Cruz, B.A., Honors in Economics

  • Dean’s Undergraduate Award
  • Economics and Environmental Studies, 1998

University of Melbourne, Education Abroad Program, 1997

Admissions

Oregon State Bar
Washington State Bar Association
State Bar of California

Professional Associations

Oregon State Bar, Real Estate and Land Use Section, Chair of Executive Committee, 2016
Oregon City Attorneys Association
American Bar Association
American Bar Foundation – Fellow
Oregon League of Conservation Voters Board Member
Oregon Women Lawyers
Urban Land Institute, 2009-2017
Women of Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy, President 2017

Professional Recognition

Best Lawyers in America, Land Use and Zoning Law, 2018-2020
Lawyer Monthly’s Women in Law Awards 2018 – Real Property & Land Use
Lawyer Monthly – United States’ Land Use Lawyer of the Year – 2017
Chambers USA – “Up and Coming” Lawyer for Real Estate: Zoning/Land Use (Oregon) 2016-2018
Super Lawyers Rising Star, 2012-2018