On May 13, 2024, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) and New York State officials broke ground on a clean water infrastructure project at Plant 6 of the Hicksville Water District, located in Nassau County.  This groundbreaking step represents just the initial phase of a comprehensive effort to implement a $9 million treatment system to remove a number of hazardous

Continue Reading Navigating the Waters: A Long Island Community’s Response to the EPA’s PFAS Directive

The New York Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (“CLCPA”) established ambitious targets to transform New York’s energy generation and efficiency. The CLCPA was signed into law in 2019 with goals to achieve 100% zero-emission electric generation by 2040 and greenhouse gas emission reduction to 85% below 1990 levels by 2050, among others.  The clean energy investments contemplated by the CLCPA include $35 billion in large-scale renewable and transmission projects, $6.8 billion to reduce building emissions, $1.8 billion for solar and more than $1 billion for clean transportation initiatives. Continue Reading Green for Green: New York’s Climate Justice Working Group Identifies Qualified Disadvantaged Communities for Clean Energy and Energy Efficiency Investments

When New York Governor Kathy Hochul executed the 2022-2023 State Budget, it included a 10-year extension to the State’s Brownfield Cleanup Program (“BCP” or “Program).  The State’s voluntary, incentive-laced, BCP was set to expire on December 31, 2022.  The Program’s extension generally reinforces the State’s commitment to incentivize the remediation and re-use of environmentally-compromised and economically-blighted property.

Applicants can now
Continue Reading 10 More Years – New York’s Brownfield Cleanup Program Extended

Last week’s election had news outlets across the State and nation talking about Long Island’s rare “red wave”.  While many are now debating what the apparent sea change means for Long Islanders, at least for the next few years, equal attention should also be paid to another important and far-reaching election result of a different color: New York’s “Green Amendment”.
Continue Reading Boon or Bane? New York’s Environmental Rights Amendment

On October 5, 2021, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (“Department” or “DEC”) released water quality guidance values for three emerging compounds, PFOA, PFOS and 1,4-Dioxane (collectively, “Emerging Compounds”).  The comment period for the draft guidance values runs until November 5, 2021.  Comments can be issued to the Department at 625 Broadway, 4th Floor, Albany, NY 12233-3500, ATTN:
Continue Reading Public Comment Period Open for NYSDEC Proposed Guidance Levels for PFOA, PFOS and 1,4-Dioxane in Ground and Surface Water

The facts at issue in Elpa Builders, Inc. v. State of New York are relatively straightforward.  The property owner (the “Owner”) owned a 53,645-square-foot parcel of property (the “Property”) along New York State Route 347 (“Route 347”) in the Town of Smithtown.  The Property is improved with a commercial building and is subject to a long-term ground lease with Taco
Continue Reading Property Owner’s Request for Court-Determined Just Compensation Backfires

Last year, the New York County Supreme Court heard an Article 78 challenge by Preserve Our Brooklyn Neighborhoods (“POBN”), a civic organization dedicated to maintaining the unique character and historical significance of the Fort Greene area of Brooklyn, New York.  This lawsuit, which I discussed in a previous post, turned on whether a resolution passed by the New
Continue Reading First Department Affirms Dismissal of Constitutional Challenge to Zoning Resolution

In a recent decision, Matter of Red Wing Properties, Inc. v. Town of Rhinebeck, et al., the Second Department held that a landowner’s intent to continue using its property for mining operations established a valid pre-existing nonconforming use.

Red Wing Properties, Inc. (“Petitioner”) owns roughly 241 acres of property located with the Town of Rhinebeck (the “Town”).  For several
Continue Reading Landowner’s Intent to Mine Property Sufficient to Establish Nonconforming Use

Last week, the New York Supreme Court, Suffolk County, denied an application for a preliminary injunction to enjoin the completion, maintenance and operation of two sixty-foot tall electronic billboard-monuments (“Project”) on opposite sides of State Route 27 a.k.a. Sunrise Highway, which Project is owned by the Shinnecock Indian Nation (“Nation”).

A.  The Project and the State’s Action

In or
Continue Reading Court Denies Preliminary Injunction to Enjoin Shinnecock Nation’s Project along Sunrise Highway

A recent Second Department decision, Matter of Village of Kiryas Joel v County of Orange, et al., addresses the intriguing justiciability doctrine of ripeness, as applied to judicial review of municipal administrative action.

In 2007, Orange County (the “County”) acquired property known as Camp LaGuardia from the New York City Economic Development Corporation.  Originally, the County’s plan was to
Continue Reading Second Department Reverses Dismissal of Article 78 Proceeding on Ripeness Grounds