Mass DEP recently released a progress report (pdf) on its Regulatory Reform Initiative.  First launched in the spring of 2011, the reform initiative has entailed an agency-wide assessment of current practices and regulations, spawning a detailed action plan (pdf) and extensive public input, as well as a broadening of the initiative by identifying additional areas for reform.  The initiative is intended to simplify the regulatory

On Tuesday, October 30, 2012, my colleagues and follow MLUM authors Gareth Orsmond and Michael Parker will be presiding over the next session of MCLE’s five-week “BasicsPlus” series on Commercial Real Estate.  Gareth and Michael will be covering zoning, subdivision control, and environmental site assessments.  The session runs from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and takes place

My colleague and fellow MLUM author Michael Parker will be one of the featured panelists at a Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) seminar next Wednesday, October 24, 2012.  The seminar is entitled Environmental Law: MCLE BasicsPlus, and will provide an “essential overview for environmental lawyers and non-specialists.”  Michael’s topic will be effective advocacy in MassDEP administrative appeals.  The seminar runs from 9:00

In 2007, Boston was the first city in the nation to adopt Green Building provisions, known as Article 37 (pdf).  Those provisions require reduced emissions from privately-owned buildings, and require all White Roofbuildings over 50,000 square feet to comply with LEED certification standards.  Now, Boston’s Allston neighborhood is home to the nation’s first Green District.  The 500 sustainable rental

In a decision issued this morning in Garrity v. Hingham Conservation Commission (pdf), the Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) ruled that the Wetlands Protection Act’s (WPA) 21-day deadlines for local conservation commissions to hold a public hearing on a notice of intent and to issue a decision after the public hearing are waivable by the applicant, provided the waiver is (1) intentional

Help is on the way for beleaguered environmental enforcement agencies that have experienced severe budget cuts over the past few years.  As reported here, the budgetary cuts at MassDEP have been especially deep.  The Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) has stepped into the breach by suing businesses that CLF alleges are causing releases of pollution into the waters

The Appeals Court’s recent decision in Conservation Commission of Brockton v. Department of Environmental Protection presents a relatively rare instance where local and state regulators disagree about the administration of a statute under which they both have responsibilities.  The statute is the Wetlands Protection Act (WPA).power plant  Under the WPA, a local conservation commission is the

With the signing into law of the 2008 Global Warming Solutions Act four years ago, Massachusetts launched what is arguably the nation’s most aggressive program to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG)earth emissions.  The cornerstone of the Act is a mandate that by 2020 the state’s GHG emissions be reduced 25% from 1990 levels.  MassInc recently released a comprehensive

On February 22, 2012, the Supreme Judicial Court (SJC) re-issued its decision in Board of Health of Sturbridge v. Board of Health of Southbridge (pdf). 

The appellants had mailed their notice of appeal to the lower court on the last day for appeal, but it arrived and was docketed four days later.  The SJC initially released its decision in January, but