A court may award court costs and reasonable attorney fees to the plaintiff in an action brought pursuant to Section 54960, 54960.1, or 54960.2 where it is found that a legislative body of the local agency has violated this chapter. Additionally, when an action brought pursuant to Section 54960.2 is dismissed with prejudice because a legislative body has provided an unconditional commitment pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of that section at any time after the 30-day period for making such a commitment has expired, the court shall award court costs and reasonable attorney fees to the plaintiff if the filing of that action caused the legislative body to issue the unconditional commitment. The costs and fees shall be paid by the local agency and shall not become a personal liability of any public officer or employee of the local agency.
A court may award court costs and reasonable attorney fees to a defendant in any action brought pursuant to Section 54960 or 54960.1 where the defendant has prevailed in a final determination of such action and the court finds that the action was clearly frivolous and totally lacking in merit.
(Amended by Stats. 2012, Ch. 732, Sec. 3.)