Experience

Conflict Resoluiton/Communications

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.

Strategic Advice

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.

Firm Highlights

Event

Annual Update: Part 1 - 2022 Legal Year in Review (1st Session)

News

Verrill Attorney Elizabeth Connellan Smith Elected President of National Workers’ Compensation Defense Network

Publication/Podcast

BLM-Masked Employees of Whole Foods Lose Race Bias Appeal Regarding Dress Code

Blog

Verrill Partner Mat Todaro selected to serve on the American Bar Association’s Section on Environment, Energy, and Resources 2022 Fall Conference Planning Committee

Earlier this year, Verrill Partner Mat Todaro was selected by American Bar Association leadership to serve on the 2022 Fall Conference Planning Committee for its Section on Environment, Energy, and Resources. In this role...

Event

Annual Update: Part 1 - 2022 Legal Year in Review (2nd Session)

Matter

Advised Fortune 500 Company on Group Health and Welfare Benefit Plans

We were engaged by a Fortune 500 manufacturing company to provide legal and compliance services regarding its group health and welfare benefit plans. During the course of our representation, we have advised the company...

Publication/Podcast

Amending Your Retirement Plans this Year for SECURE Act and CARES Act Changes

This post was updated on September 29, 2022. On August 3, 2022, the IRS extended the deadline for retirement plan sponsors to adopt amendments necessary to comply with the Setting Every Community Up for...

News

The Boston Bar Association Adds Verrill Attorney David M. Friedman to Council

Matter

Elections and Constitutional Law: Successfully Challenged Certification of Initiative Petition

In a victory for consumers and the ride-hailing public, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court recently barred the Secretary of State from placing on the November ballot initiative petitions proposed by companies such as Uber...

Blog

Proposed Changes to Massachusetts Paid Family & Medical Leave Regulations

The Massachusetts Department of Family and Medical Leave has proposed changes to the regulations governing the state’s paid family and medical leave program. The proposed changes are intended to clarify the requirements related to...

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