Where there is public or agency concern with the real or perceived impacts of a project, Steve provides issue identification, negotiation with affected parties, representation in public and agency meetings, and mediation among affected interests. Such situations arise in the context of alleged violations, where negotiations with permit agencies must be carried out, in the remediation of contaminated sites, where both communications with nearby residents and negotiations with potentially responsible parties often are needed, and in the environmental impact review of large or controversial projects, where public presentations and agency liaisons can be the key to success. His assignments in this area have included negotiating consent agreements in lieu of administrative or civil penalty actions on private projects, negotiating appropriate permit conditions for new development, and ministering to complex lease negotiations where potential tenants have environmental concerns. He also has represented clients successfully in negotiations around endangered species and historical resources.
Environmental Review Management
Steve often manages the preparation of environmental review documents. This begins with the negotiation of an appropriate scope of study with reviewing agencies. From that scope, he develops scopes of work for each technical contractor, assists in the selection of suitable technical contractors, provides a writers guide outline of all text to be produced and provides quality assurance and quality control review of all draft text. Where needed, he redrafts text or drafts particularly sensitive text directly. Finally, he can assemble, produce, and handle the proper filing of the review document. He also provides effective liaison services between the project proponent, its technical team, and regulators. The result is environmental review documents and processes that meet the needs of regulating agencies while achieving project objectives in a timely and cost effective way. He has provided such services on several hundred public and private sector projects.
For private, institutional, and not-for-profit clients, Steve’s efforts focus on the strategy and tactics of review and development for new projects, on environmental compliance assurance for existing facilities, and on liaisons with regulatory agencies. Steve has advised several hundred private development projects on environmental review strategy, including retail and commercial development, contaminated property reuse, industrial subdivisions, parking facilities, single and multi-family housing projects, waterfront development, mixed-use developments, and smart-growth projects. Steve’s major current and recent projects include a major transit-oriented development in Somerville, a mixed-use project in Canton, a major energy facility in Boston, a large retail project in North Attleborough, and MESA habitat review and permitting for several projects on the islands. Steve also has served as strategic advisor for environmental review and environmental regulatory matters to the University of Massachusetts (UMass), Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport), the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority (MBTA), the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation (RIEDC), and the Governor of Rhode Island. For public sector clients, Steve brings his skills to bear on environmental review strategy, policy analyses, regulatory assessments, capital planning, and development feasibility. Major projects include the UMass Lowell Strategic Development Plan, the UMass Boston Master Plan, Logan Airport Modernization, Worcester Commuter Rail Extension, and the Quonset Davisville (RI) Master Plan and Container Port Study.