Property Contamination, Environmental Remediation, and Cost Recovery Actions

Mar. 18th, 2024 12:00 pm

Dealing with environmental contamination can be a challenge for property owners, often resulting in costly cleanup liabilities. When contamination occurs, a cost recovery action may be initiated to address the issue and to ensure that responsible parties ultimately bear the financial burden of remediation. Understanding how these actions proceed and what steps property owners can take to limit their liabilities is crucial in returning a contaminated property to its proper condition for future development or conservation.

Importance of a Comprehensive Administrative Record for Municipal Decision-Making

Dec. 3rd, 2023 10:00 am

Like the sunrise every morning, one thing is certain: there will always be people displeased with a municipal board’s decision-making. If a legal challenge to a municipal board decision happens, the administrative record that the board created for that decision is critically important.

Exploring Mediation Over Litigation in Land Use and Environmental Disputes

Nov. 20th, 2023 10:15 am

Today, the resolution of legal disputes — especially those involving land use and environmental laws, municipal decision-making, and community development projects impacting communities — often lead parties towards the courtroom.

Tips on Organizing Community Groups

Nov. 20th, 2023 9:30 am

New York State is home to diverse communities, each with its unique charm and character. Sometimes, development projects come knocking at our doors, bringing change that can disrupt our environment, neighborhoods, and way of life.

Understanding Type I Actions Under SEQRA

Nov. 9th, 2023 12:00 pm

New York’s State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) ensures that any state or local governmental decisions which may impact the environment are given due consideration. It’s a law that touches on various aspects of community life, from new construction to the adoption of land use plans. But what exactly triggers a Type I action under SEQRA? Let’s delve into this topic to uncover the significance of these actions and how they could affect you and your community.

Simplifying Civil Litigation: New York's Legal Landscape Transformed By Passage of New Law, Allowing Affirmations In Lieu of Affidavits in Civil Litigation

Nov. 7th, 2023 12:00 pm

In a progressive move towards streamlining the civil litigation process, New York State Governor Hochul recently signed into law bills that amend the New York Civil Practice Law & Rules (CPLR) Section 2106, marking a pivotal shift in the procedural dynamics of civil litigation. Effective from January 1, 2024, the amendments apply to both ongoing and future actions, aiming to remove bureaucratic hurdles that have traditionally impeded the swift progression of legal processes.

A New Vision for NYC: How Mayor Adams Aims to Implement New Zoning Practices to Solve the City's Most Pressing Problems

Nov. 7th, 2023 11:00 am

In an historic move, New York City is setting the stage for transformative change through comprehensive zoning reforms, collectively known as the “City of Yes” initiative.[1] This approach aims to address some of the city’s most pressing issues, including the housing crisis, the need for sustainable development, and the aspiration for a city-wide economic revitalization. This blog takes a look at the three cornerstone changes that are poised to reshape the city, while addressing necessary future considerations.

NYS's New Tech Hub Designation: A Catalyst for Development and a Test for Sustainable Practices

Nov. 7th, 2023 10:45 am

Upstate New York has the opportunity to enter a technological renaissance. In late October, the federal government, authorized by the CHIPS and Science Act, designated Syracuse, Rochester, and Buffalo as a national tech hub for computer chip manufacturing (NY SMART I-Corridor), and the Southern Tier for battery technologies and the energy storage sector (New Energy New York).

Elevating Communities: Understanding EPA's Environmental Justice Programs in New York

Nov. 7th, 2023 10:00 am

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is taking significant strides in addressing environmental and public health disparities across communities with its commitment to Environmental Justice (EJ) programs. In New York, these initiatives are receiving a substantial boost, with over $61 million in funding earmarked for projects that aim to empower and protect underserved communities. Let’s delve into what these programs entail, how they are funded, and the transformative impact they can have on New Yorkers.

Solar Energy and Homeowners' Associations: How to Navigate the Hurdles to Reap the Benefits

Oct. 31st, 2023 10:45 am

Are you part of a homeowners’ association (HOA) and considering the adoption of clean, renewable energy? Going solar as an HOA or as a homeowner within an HOA may be the right choice for you. As the world increasingly prioritizes sustainable energy solutions, HOAs are also looking to harness the power of the sun.

Balancing a State's Right to Regulate Energy Policy in the Face of Federal Preemption Laws

Oct. 31st, 2023 10:00 am

In a landmark decision, the Ninth Circuit recently struck down Berkeley, California’s ambitious natural gas ban. The ruling sent shockwaves through the nation as it rekindled the debate over the role of natural gas in our country’s energy future. This decision has far-reaching implications for both environmentalists and the energy industry, shedding light on the complexities of balancing climate goals with practical energy needs.

Navigating Environmental Enforcement in New York

Oct. 24th, 2023 10:45 am

When it comes to protecting New York State’s environment, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is at the forefront. The enforcement of the state’s Environmental Conservation Law (ECL) is a complex process, and understanding its intricacies is crucial, especially if you find yourself involved in an environmental compliance matter.

Airbnb's Challenge to NYC's Short-Term Rental Rules Dismissed: Court Upholds Regulations

Sep. 1st, 2023 10:50 am

The landscape of short-term rentals in New York City is ever-changing, with a recent court decision adding another chapter to its evolving story. The New York State Supreme Court, in its landmark decision in “Airbnb Inc. v. New York City Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement, New York County Index Number 154865/2023”, dismissed a lawsuit brought by Airbnb and short-term rental hosts against the city’s regulations on such accommodations.

The Power of State Constitutions: Montana's Recent Environmental Rights Ruling Explored

Sep. 1st, 2023 9:00 am

Constitutional rights form the backbone of our legal system. When these rights intersect with environmental concerns, the legal landscape becomes particularly intriguing. One such instance recently played out in Montana, offering insights and raising questions about similar provisions in state constitutions across the country, including New York State.

New York State's Green Amendment: An Examination of its Scope and Implications

Aug. 8th, 2023 12:10 pm

Effective January 1, 2022, New York State enacted a new constitutional amendment, known as the Green Amendment, or the Environmental Rights Amendment. Embedded within the New York State Constitution at Article I, Section 19, the Amendment assures each individual’s right to clean air, clean water, and a healthful environment. This significant constitutional change has drawn much attention, and it’s critical for residents, businesses, and government actors alike to understand what this amendment entails and how it might affect their interactions with the environment.

The "Seneca Meadows" Landfill Expansion Controversy in New York State

Aug. 8th, 2023 11:00 am

Every community faces a multitude of challenges. Some are more visible than others. But few issues have the capacity to create as much concern and contention as the proposed expansion of a landfill in your neighborhood. In this regard, Seneca County, New York, is no different. The ongoing controversy over the proposed expansion of the Seneca Meadows Landfill has ignited a passionate debate that extends beyond the county borders.