General Business Zoning, Planning & Land Use

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New Law Expands Local Control Over Massage Industry

Law Revises Legislation Set to Sunset This Year - A new law substantially revises the state’s regulation over the massage industry, including expanding cities’ and counties’ ability to regulate massage therapists and...more

Completed Condominium Units to be Exempted from ILSA Registration Requirements

A bill exempting completed residential condominium units from the burdensome registration provisions of the Interstate Land Sales Act (“ILSA”) was passed by the U.S. Senate on September 18, 2014, after earlier passage by the...more

Partition Suit Decision Could Be Problematic for W.Va. Oil & Gas Operators

Based on a recent decision in West Virginia’s 3rd Judicial Circuit, which includes Doddridge, Pleasants and Ritchie counties, the use of litigation in the form of partition suits may be more problematic than it otherwise has...more

Supreme Court of Texas Clears the Path for Future Real Property Damage Calculations

In Wheeler v. Enbridge Pipelines, the Supreme Court of Texas provided guidance to midstream companies on the proper calculation of damages to real property stemming from the breach of a pipeline right-of-way agreement...more

FERC Order 800 eases hydropower regulations

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has issued an order streamlining its regulations for some small hydropower projects. FERC Order No. 800 conforms the Commission's regulations to the Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency...more

Pierce Atwood Environmental Regulatory Compliance Calendar (RCC)

This monthly publication provides information on compliance deadlines, regulatory developments, and other developments in federal, Maine, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire environmental and land use laws. NEW REGULATORY...more

Malian Mining Sector Update: Mining Licenses Revocations and Mitigation Strategies

On 31 July 2014, the government of Mali announced that approximately 30 % of all mining permits—spanning a surface area of more than 5,000 square miles—had been cancelled in order to “clean up the sector.” Permits revocations...more

How to Land Projects in California

Until recently, California’s state-level economic development cupboard was looking a little bare — its 400 redevelopment agencies were dissolved in February 2012, property tax increment financing has been discontinued and...more

California Energy Commission Delays Compliance With Energy Disclosure Program for Smaller Nonresidential Buildings

The California Energy Commission (CEC) implemented the Nonresidential Building Energy Use Disclosure Program in two phases. The first phase took effect on January 1, 2014 and applies to nonresidential buildings of at least...more

Ivory Coast Mining Code Update: Adoption of the Implementing Legislation

As highlighted in our client alert of March 7, 2014, the Ivorian Parliament approved a new mining code (the “New Mining Code”) on March 5 which aimed at modernizing the mining sector and increasing its...more

New Massachusetts Law Imposes Limits and Controls on Retainage under Construction Contracts

On August 9, 2014, Governor Patrick signed SB2271 into law. This law will have important impacts on both private developers and contractors. The Act limits the amount of retainage withheld under construction contracts and...more

New Kazakhstan Permits and Notifications Law

The provisions that relate to permits and licenses were recently consolidated into one legislative act. In November 2014, the Permits and Notifications Law of 16 May 2014 (the New Law) will take effect in Kazakhstan....more

Litigation of Construction Delay: Claims of Delayed Early Completion [Video]

Construction delay is a common problem that occurs on many construction projects. In this Lawline CLE program, attorney Barry Bramble delves into the legal and practical issues concerning litigation of delays and other...more

Confirmation That the Limitation Period for 'Building Actions' is 10 Years, Not Six

The recent Victorian Court of Appeal decision of Brirek Industries Pty Ltd v McKenzie Group Consulting (Vic) Pty Ltd [2014] VSCA 165 (Brirek Case) has settled the appropriate time period, at least in Victoria, in which a...more

Illinois defines metrics for medical cannabis applicants

Cannabis industry hopefuls in Illinois are poised to begin the application process after the three state agencies administering Illinois’ medical marijuana law released long-awaited metrics on Aug. 8....more

Doing Business in Canada: Aboriginal Law

ABORIGINAL LAW: Canadian law has long recognized the rights of aboriginal peoples, sometimes called First Nations, as the first occupiers of the land. With the founding of Canada in 1867 constitutional powers were...more

Implied Restrictive Covenant Prevents Conversion of Golf Course to Residential Lots

A federal court of appeals held that a golf course was encumbered by an implied restrictive covenant, preventing the foreclosing lender from selling the golf course for residential development. The U.S. Court of Appeals for...more

Environmental Alert: "Clearly Allocate Risk of Change Interpretations in Transactions"

When buyers request that sellers warrant compliance with environmental law, sellers need to appreciate that agency interpretation or agency enforcement discretion may have played a role in the seller’s apparent ongoing...more

Environmental Due Diligence: A Practical Guide to Environmental Site Assessments Part 2

If after a Phase I ESA, the EP determines further investigation is warranted, that more invasive investigation takes the form of a Phase II ESA. The primary purpose in conducting a Phase II ESA is to evaluate any REC(s)...more

BLM Agrees to Complete Hydraulic Fracturing EIS for Leases in California

A recent agreement between environmentalists and the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) may open the floodgates to challenges of the sufficiency of Environmental Assessments (EA) or Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) for oil...more

Supreme Court Affirms in Michigan v. Bay Mills Indian Community: Don’t Roll the Dice with Tribal Sovereign Immunity

The U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decision in Michigan v. Bay Mills Indian Community is a reminder to a broad range of entities, including energy companies, financial service providers, and state and local governments, that...more

Make your Developer Note more marketable - 8 tips

There is a common misperception that a municipality's willingness to issue a so-called Developer Note on a pay-as-you-go basis is tantamount to providing equity to the redevelopment project. Unfortunately, most...more

Curb Appeal: Looks Matter When It Comes to the ADA

I’m frequently asked two questions by business owners and managers when it comes to ADA compliance and lawsuits. The first question is, “what type of businesses get sued most often?”...more

Motions in Limine May be Used in Eminent Domain Proceedings to Determine Party's Interest in Property

"Motions in limine" are motions made shortly before trial, and they're typically filed in an attempt to limit the introduction of evidence to the jury. They are a powerful tool in eminent domain proceedings, and can be used...more

Entrepreneurial Growth and Recruitment Strategy: An Economic Development Formula for Success

Historically, most local economic development efforts, or regional efforts among a group of counties, have focused on business recruitment. These efforts have generally been focused on large business recruitment projects. ...more

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