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News & Announcements

Radio Broadcast: LULC Aids City of Newburgh in Distressed Property Initiative
On December 16, 2010, WAMC Northeast Public Radio reported on the promising collaboration between Pace’s Land Use Law Center and the City of Newburgh to tackle the City’s problem of distressed and vacant properties.  The Land Use Law Center’s John R. Nolon was featured on the broadcast along with leaders from the City of Newburgh.  “People are ready and willing and are working together,” Nolon said in the coverage, which highlights the tremendous efforts of community groups, city staff, and Newburgh’s City Council, which unanimously adopted a resolution approving the Center’s proposed approach for the city’s revitalization.  The Land Use Law Center’s work has been aided by the Center for Community Progress and funded by the Ford Foundation.

Awards Given at Sustainable Development Law Conference
Academics and attorneys from across the region gathered at Pace Law School on October 22nd for the Land Use Law Center’s “Rediscovering Sustainable Development Law Conference.”  Congresswoman Nita Lowey was in attendance to receive an award in recognition of her work to support sustainable development. Speakers presented on the existing legal framework supporting sustainable development and the quick expansion of this emerging field. With renowned arbitrator and mediator Ted Kheel in attendance, last year’s Kheel Center “Founder’s Award” recipient, Pamela Esterman, passed the Award to New York Times Dot Earth Blogger Andrew Revkin who presented on communication problems with regard to climate change.
Click here to access the conference video recording and materials

Land Use Law Center in 2010 Dean’s Report

The Pace Law School’s Dean’s Report for 2010 featured the Land Use Law Center in its section on innovative programs. The Dean’s Report acknowledges the LULC’s receipt of a grant from the National Sea Grant Law Center to conduct a sea level rise training program in the Hudson Valley, the first of its kind in the region. The training program will address the pressures faced by communities in the region from sea level rise. Read the full article on page 7.

Professor John R. Nolon Invited to Participate in Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Expert Meeting

Professor John R. Nolon, Counsel to the Land Use Law Center and Director of the Kheel Center on the Resolution of Environmental Interest Disputes, has been invited to participate again in the next Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Expert Meeting on Human Settlements and Infrastructure, which will be held this spring in Calcutta, India.  The meeting will be part of Professor Nolon’s involvement with the IPCC, assisting on a study of human settlements and climate change as a member of the expert group for the Panel’s Fifth Assessment Report scheduled to be released in 2014.

Land Use Law Center Publication Becomes one of the Top 10 Downloaded Articles for Sustainability Law & Policy
This spring, Professor John R. Nolon’s article, “The Land Use Stabilization Wedge Strategy: Shifting Ground to Mitigate Climate Change”, became one of the  Social Science Research Network’s (SSRN) Top Ten download articles for Sustainability Law & Policy.

LULA Program Expands: Regional Land Use Class Graduates 34 Leaders
MONTOUR FALLS, N.Y. — On April 29, 2010, the Southern Finger Lakes / Southern Tier region saw its first graduating class of local leaders trained through Pace University’s award-winning Land Use Leadership Alliance program. Thirty-four participants from Tioga, Tompkins, Schuyler, Chemung and Steuben counties completed an intensive series of four-day courses on land use practice, law and community decision making in New York State.  The training, hosted by Watkins Glen International, received $10,000 in financial support from both Cargill, Inc.’s Watkins Glen plant and the Global Partnership Fund. Don Chutas, Cargill Salt's Plant Manager explained that "Cargill looks to partner with higher education institutions that provide access to the best people and ideas relevant to land use." According to Chutas, The LULA program accomplishes just that by providing environmental conservation education to the area's leaders.  Originally developed by Pace University’s Land Use Law Center, over 2,000 local land use leaders have attended the popular LULA trainings in the Hudson River Valley. Cornell University’s Community and Regional Development Institute (CaRDI), with financial support from Cornell’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) University Center, has taken the lead in partnership with both Pace and Albany Law School’s Government Law Center to make the training available in other parts of the state. The LULA training has won multiple awards, including the 2009 National Leadership Award for founder John Nolon from the American Planning Association.  Organizers for the training included the Cornell Cooperative Extension associations and planning departments for the five counties, as well as CaRDI and Farm Bureau. Organizers hope to offer future trainings in the region on an annual basis.  Many thanks to Danielle Hautaniemi and the rest of Cornell Cooperative Extension for the writing of this press release.

Land Use Law Center Attorney Tapped to Speak at Sustainable Energy Conference
On March 11, 2010, Jessica Bacher, Adjunct Professor of Law and Senior Managing Attorney of the Land Use Law Center, spoke at the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association’s (NSEA) annual event in Boston, MA.  The event, “BuildingEnergy10”, is a conference and tradeshow for renewable energy and green building professionals.  Her lecture focused on “Land Use Law and Climate Change: Ideas for a Better Built Environment.”  Co-presenting with Douglas Foy, President of Serrafix, a strategic consulting firm focused on environmental, energy, transportation, and climate change issues, their session explained “what can be done now, what many laws don’t accommodate, and what changes in land use law and regulation are necessary to pull back from climate crisis.”

Majority of NY Communities Adopt Land Use Law Center Stormwater Management Law
Stormwater Management Local Law drafted by the Land Use Law Center in 2004 has now been adopted by the majority of the 450 communities in New York State that are obliged to comply with the Environmental Protection Agency’s Phase II stormwater regulations (MS4 municipalities), reports the State Department of Environmental Conservation.  DEC also reports that it uses the local law as the standard for measuring whether municipalities are in compliance with the program.

  Routledge Publishing Group Issues Press Release on Nolon Climate Change Work
Routledge Publishing Group, the publisher for the American Planning Association, issued a press release on December 17 from Abingdon, Oxon (UK) announcing the publication of two articles in Planning & Environmental Law authored by the Land Use Law Center’s John R. Nolon.  Timed to coincide with the climax of the Copenhagen Climate talks, the press release called attention to the professor’s thesis that “Combating climate change requires that the full legal power, technical capacity, financial resources and historical strengths of all levels of government be integrated into a single system of management, mitigation, and sustainable development.” 

Land Use Law Center Featured at American Planning Association Annual Conference
The Land Use Law Center’s John R. Nolon, Jessica A. Bacher, and Jennie C. Nolon, were selected to conducted a day-long “Climate Change Management and Sustainable Development” training workshop with Professor Patricia Salkin of Albany Law School at the American Planning Association annual conference in New Orleans.  The workshop explored the connection between climate change management and sustainable development and how both can be furthered by practical land-use planning, regulation, and project approval protocols.  Professor Nolon also presented “A Bull Market for Wetlands” at the Bettman Symposium.  The symposium focused on how federal and state agencies are partnering with private projects to increase carbon sequestration in wetlands.  Professors Nolon and Bacher also spoke at the Planning for the Worst Case Scenario session on the complex and persistent legal battles resulting from ad-hoc municipal climate-change adaptation plans.

LULC Attorney Selected for Executive Committee of American Planning Association’s Planning & Law Division
Jennie C. Nolon, Staff Attorney for the Land Use Law Center, has been appointed Secretary-Treasurer of the Planning & Law Division of the American Planning Association.  She will also serve as a judge for the second year in a row for the Planning & Law Division’s annual Smith-Babcock-Williams Student Writing Competition.

Land Use Law Center Expands Reach of its Land Use Leadership Alliance (LULA) Training Program

On December 11, 2009, Tiffany Zezula, Senior Managing Attorney of the Land Use Law Center, negotiated an agreement with Cornell University and Albany Law School to expand the reach of the Center’s Land Use Leadership Appliance training program to include the upstate region between Ithaca, Saratoga, and Hudson, New York.  This agreement built upon the April Memorandum of Agreement between the three organizations, pledging cooperation to increase the capacity of local governments and citizens to address critical land use, environmental, climate change, economic development, and other issues of concern to municipalities.

Gov. Patterson Appoints John R. Nolon to Council Charged with Preparing State Climate Action Plan
The Land Use Law Center’s John R. Nolon was appointed on December 10, 2009 by Governor Patterson to serve on the coordinating council charged with preparing a Climate Action Plan for the State of New York as part of the Governor’s effort to achieve the goal of 80% emissions reductions by 2050.

Land Use Law Center Founder Appointed to Editorial Board of Metro New York Transit-Friendly Development Newsletter
Professor John Nolon has been appointed to the Editorial Board of the  Metro New York Transit-Friendly Development Newsletter, published by Rutgers School of Planning and Public Policy.

Professor John R. Nolon Receives Endowed Chair
Professor John R. Nolon has been named as Pace Law School's Hopkins Professor for 2009-2011.  The Hopkins Chair is an endowed Chair established to honor Judge James A. Hopkins, who served as Interim Dean of the Law School in 1982-83.  The Chair is awarded every two years to a faculty member who has made extraordinary contributions to the law school primarily in the areas of scholarship and teaching.

Land Use Law Center Staff Selected for City's Sustainability Committee
Mayor Noam Bramson appointed John R. Nolon, founder of the Land Use Law Center, to New Rochelle's Sustainability Advisory Board. The Board was established to help guide the City's progress as one of three cities in the nation selected competitively as a sustainable urban community.

Land Use Law Center Study Cited
A 2005 study by the Land Use Law Center was cited in the September 25, 2009 Poughkeepsie Journal article "Dollars & Sense: East Fishkill wins fight to keep popular road open."

Cornell Cooperative Extension Features Tiffany Zezula on Strengthening Environmental Intermunicipal Agreements
Tiffany Zezula, Director of Training for the Land Use Law Center, was the featured guest speaker at a September 23, 2009 Cornell Cooperative Extension Dutchess County educational forum on “Strengthening Environmental Intermunicipal Agreements.”

Article Quotes Land Use Law Center on Pending Supreme Court Case
The August 21, 2009 article “Supreme Court Reviews of Property Case May Impact Climate Planning,” published in Carbon Control News, quoted Professor John Nolon on who he thinks should pay close attention to the Stop the Beach Renourishment case pending before the Court.  Nolon, the article writes, suggests that a variety of groups should take interest, including "planners, citizens and owners interested in the impacts of climate change, which include storm surges, hurricanes and the gradual landward movement of the tide."

American Planning Association Awards John Nolon for Work on Land Use Leadership Alliance
The American Planning Association (APA) awarded John R. Nolon with the 2009 National Leadership Award for a Planning Advocate.  The award recognizes an individual, appointed or elected official who has advanced or promoted the cause of planning in the public arena.
In selecting John Nolon for the award, the APA cited his work to create and build the  Land Use Leadership Alliance (LULA) Training Program "designed to inspire respected local land use leaders and planners to be effective agents of change in their communities."  According to the APA, through the LULA program, "Professor John R. Nolon has created the most extensive land use leaders training program in the country....  The impact of his advocacy work goes well beyond the Hudson Valley in New York where the program began, stretching now to Connecticut and Utah....  He is an advocate through his volunteerism, his demonstrated passion for promoting sound community planning, and through his professional focus on scholarship and program development for students, professionals, and community advocates alike."
The ceremony took place on April 28th in Minneapolis at the APA's annual National Planning Conference with the award presented by the APA's Executive Director and CEO, W. Paul Farmer, FAICP; APA President, Robert Hunter, FAICP; and 2009 National Planning Awards Jury Chair, Carol Rhea, AICP.  With him at the ceremony was his daughter, Jennie Nolon, Staff Attorney for the Land Use Law Center, and Professor Patricia E. Salkin of Albany Law School’s Government Law Center, who has worked with Nolon for many years and nominated him for the award.

Land Use Law Center & Professor John Nolon in Westchester Magazine
Professor John R. Nolon was interviewed for Westchester Magazine's April 23, 2009 article on “The Future of Westchester’s Environment: Our Inconvenient Truths” where he discusses what Westchester County may expect if it's current pattern of development continues.

Land Use Law Center Partners with Cornell University and Albany Law School
On April 3, 2009, the Land Use Law Center of Pace University, the Cornell University Community and Rural Development Institute (CaRDI) and Albany Law School’s Government Law Center entered into a Memorandum of Agreement pledging cooperation to increase the capacity of local governments and citizens to address critical land use, environmental, climate change, economic development, and other issues of concern to municipalities by broadening the reach of the Land Use Law Center’s  Land Use Leadership Alliance (LULA) training program.  For more information, see: "Nationally Recognized Institutions Partner for Land Use Training."

Land Use Law Center Attorney Receives LEED Accreditation

In February, 2009, Jennie Nolon, Staff Attorney to the Center, received her credential from the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) as a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design Accredited Professional (LEED AP), making her one of less than 40 LEED APs in New York State registered in the area of legal practice.  As part of the Center’s work on green development law, Jennie’s accreditation will help the Center to educate students and work with local governments on the implementation of responsible green building practices and regulations.  The Land Use Law Center is also a  USGBC member organization.

New York Times Quotes Nolon on Dispute Over Astor Estate
The December 7, 2008 New York Times article, "The 64.5-Acre Question," quotes the Land Use Law Center's John R. Nolon on the complex land use issues faced by Briarcliff Manor in the wake of Holly Hill, "the weekend retreat of the late philanthropist and socialite Brooke Astor," coming on the market.  Among other comments, the article quoted Nolon as advising towns to "become proactive rather than defensively reactive when it comes to land use....  In general, though, when a large estate comes on the market, it presents a unique challenge that most municipalities haven’t anticipated.”

LULA Program Founder Among Westchester's "Most Influential Residents"
John R. Nolon was selected by Westchester Magazine as one of "Westchester's Most Influential Residents" for his work at the Land Use Law Center.  According to the article, published in November, 2008, "The planet, many of us have come to realize, is in need of help, and, it seems, no one has done more to help our piece of it than John R. Nolon..., the founder of Pace Law School’s nationally acclaimed Land Use Law Center, a training and research center for environmental and land issues.  Professor Nolon has taught, through a special leadership training program, more than 1,500 Hudson Valley leaders, decision-makers, legislators, citizens, and activists how to use—and, if necessary, change—local laws in order to protect and improve the environment and support eco-friendly development.  'John is known as the green guru of Westchester,' says Ned Sullivan, president of the 45-year-old and 25,000-member-strong environmental group Scenic Hudson. 'Not only is he a consummate legal practitioner, he is also a highly skilled mediator. I’ve seen him help Westchester public officials at odds over competing visions of land use to forge a shared agenda and move forward.'"

Land Use Law Center Receives Funding from Congresswoman Nita Lowey
The Land Use Law Center at Pace Law School is the recipient of a $133,000 appropriation by the office of Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D-Westchester/Rockland), a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee.  The funding, seen by Congresswomen Lowey as an urgent priority for Westchester and Rockland counties, will provide the needed training and technical assistance to local leaders who are responsible for creating the land use patterns that support the current and future population in New York State.

Environmental Benefits of Transit-Oriented Development Cited
Professor John Nolon was quoted in the Poughkeepsie Journal article, “Riverfront Advice: Build Near Rail depots,” published November 13, 2008.  The quote builds on the extensive work of the Land Use Law Center in the area of Transit-Oriented Development.  As Nolon offers in the article, per capita energy usage, water usage, storm water runoff, and pollution are all decreased in transit-oriented developments when compared to other kinds of development patterns.

The Land Use Leadership Alliance Expands to Utah
The  Land Use Leadership Alliance (LULA), the Land Use Law Center’s noted four-day intensive training program on land use and community decision-making, launched its first ever program in Utah on October 10, 2008. The attendees represented over seven different cities and various positions within the communities.  LULA will return to Utah in the Fall of 2009.

NY State Bar Association Honors LULA's Positive Impact on Natural Resources
On January 26, 2007, the Environmental Law Section of the New York State Bar Association honored John Nolon "for his extensive work in educating state and local officials on land use and environmental impacts" as part of the Land Use Law Center's  Land Use Leadership Alliance program, "which has resulted in a positive impact on New York’s natural resources."

The USGBC & Land Use Law Center Announce Two Resources to Help Local Governments Create Sustainable Neighborhoods

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and the Land Use Law Center announce two new free resources – the Technical Guidance Manual for Sustainable Neighborhoods and the Neighborhood Development Floating Zone – to help local governments leverage the LEED for Neighborhood Development (LEED-ND) rating system as a sustainability tool. The LEED-ND rating system aligns the principles of smart growth, New Urbanism, and green building into a set of national standards for green planning and design at the neighborhood scale. Accompanied by case studies of how municipalities have leveraged LEED-ND as a sustainability tool, the Technical Guidance Manual for Sustainable Neighborhoods will assist local governments in using the LEED-ND criteria to audit their land use regulations, plans, and policies to promote more environmentally sound and economically robust communities. Augmenting the manual, the Neighborhood Development Floating Zone is a model ordinance to help local governments foster green community development using the LEED-ND rating system.  The Floating Zone is offered as a cost-effective and efficient tool that can be used by local governments hoping to incentivize the private sector to follow green neighborhood development principles when the more extensive zoning update process laid out in the manual is not an option. Both resources are available for download at no cost:

Click here for the Technical Guidance Manual for Sustainable Neighborhoods
Click here for the Neighborhood Development Floating Zone

New Nolon & Salkin Book on Climate Change and Sustainable Development

From Professors John R. Nolon of Pace Law School and Patricia E. Salkin of  Albany Law School comes a  new book, “Climate Change and Sustainable Development Law in a Nutshell,”which comprehensively explores international, federal, state, and local laws and policies regarding sustainable development and climate change management.  The book – a part of the West Nutshell Series - illustrates how national and state governments can motivate local governments in the U.S. to use existing authority and to adopt effective local initiatives to mitigate and adapt to climate change. 
For more information, also see:
Nolon  and Salkin Book Announcement (scroll down to bottom of page) – a synopsis from the Land Use Prof Blog
New Book Published on Climate Change and Sustainable Development Law– a posting from Prof. Salkin on the Law of the Land blog
Alternatives to Kyoto Cap and Trade– a posting from Prof. Nolon on the Green Law blog

Hopkins Memorial Lecture – Over 100 Alumni in Attendance

The Land Use Law Center was pleased to welcome over 100 alumni, students, and friends at the November 10th James D. Hopkins memorial lecture at Pace Law School.  Professor John R. Nolon delivered the lecture, entitled "Sustainable Development Law: Keeping Pace," as the recipient of the 2009-11 endowed Hopkins Chair, awarded biennially to a faculty member who has made extraordinary contributions in the areas of scholarship and teaching.

Land Use Law Center Begins Blogging on GreenLaw

Alongside contributors such as Karl Coplan and David Cassuto, the Land Use Law Center contributes regularly to the GreenLaw blog on issues of sustainable development. GreenLaw is the new incarnation of Pace Law School’s Center for Environmental Legal Studies quarterly magazine. Branded as the “Blog of the Pace Environmental Law Program,” GreenLaw hosts articles from environmental faculty and aims to provide both news and commentary on current environmental issues.
New Training Program: LULC Announces Sea Level Rise LULA Program
The Land Use Law Center has been awarded a grant from the National Sea Grant Law Center to conduct a sea level rise training program in the Hudson Valley.  The program will be the first of its kind in the region.  The selected communities will represent municipalities that are under increasing pressures from sea level rise and storm hazards that threaten community character, sustainable coastal development, and coastal ecosystems.  The program will involve and educate the land use board members from Planning, Zoning, and Conservation Commissions, as well as other key community leaders representing local landowners, developers, Sea Grant extension agents, fishermen, coastal managers, chamber of commerce leaders, business leaders and civic and environmental group representatives.  The curriculum for the program will emphasize the relationship between these coastal communities, the health and well being of the Hudson River and non-point source activities, technical assistance on land use law, innovative approaches to sea level rise adaptation, economic development, hazard mitigation, and natural resource protection to strengthen community planning, regulation and informed decision-making. Best management practices to maintain water quality and low impact development techniques will also be highlighted.
Click here for program details

New Land Use Leadership Alliance Informational Brochure

The Land Use Law Center has just released a new informational brochure on its groundbreaking Land Use Leadership Alliance training program.  Containing updated program information, pictures from past programs, graduate testimonials, and the results from our LULA graduate survey, the brochure highlights the benefits and successes of the LULA as well as the communities and individuals involved in shaping the program. 
Click here to view the brochure!

Land Use Law Center & Kheel Center Welcome New Arrivals!

The Land Use Law Center and the Kheel Center on the Resolution of Environmental Interest Disputes are pleased to welcome Meg Byerly as the 2010-2011 Graduate Fellow and Sam Capasso as the first Kheel LL.M. Research Scholar.  The Centers also welcome Lily Jacqueline Zezula as the newest member of the family.  Lily Jacqueline made her appearance at 5:19 pm on March 26, 2010, weighing 9 pounds, 4 ounces, and measuring 21 inches.  She is the daughter of Tiffany Zezula, Managing Director for the Centers.

Pace Law School Announces New LLM in Land Use & Sustainable Development Law
Pace Law School is proud to announce its newest track – land use and sustainable development – within its Master of Laws (LLM) in Environmental Law curriculum. Building on existing strengths in transit oriented development, climate change, environmental law, local land use and governance, environmental interest dispute resolution, stakeholder development, and environmental equity and jurisprudence, this new track trains lawyers to confront and overcome challenges arising from the urgent need to develop and redevelop human settlements in an environmentally sensitive, commercially viable, and ecologically sustainable manner, both domestically and internationally. 
Pace Law School has offered internationally acclaimed environmental legal education since 1978 and is consistently ranked among the nation’s top programs in environmental law, according to US News & World Report. Complementing its excellence in environmental law, the school hosts both the nation’s oldest and most active Land Use Law Center and Energy and Climate Center, which provide students practical experiences related to the law of sustainable development and support the design and teaching of the school’s curriculum.

Groundbreaker's Award Recipient Announced
The Land Use Law Center is happy to announce that this year's recipient of its Groundbreaker’s Award is the Intermunicipal Task Force of the Town of Red Hook and the Villages of Red Hook and Tivoli.  The Groundbreaker's Award is given to a graduate (or group of graduates) of the Center's  Land Use Leadership Alliance (LULA) Training Program who has done exemplary work in the community or region using the types of land use and decision-making tools and techniques taught in the LULA program. 
The work of the Intermunicipal Task Force of the Town of Red Hook and the Villages of Red Hook and Tivoli epitomizes the spirit and purpose of the LULA program.  The Task Force’s leadership, community engagement, and demonstrated understanding of effective land use mechanisms have been groundbreaking for sustainable development in the Northern Dutchess region.
The Task Force was selected from a prestigious group of other past LULA graduates nominated for this award.  The award was given at the Land Use Leadership Alliance Dinner on October 22, 2009.    Click here to read our Case Study on the Intermunicipal Task Force.

Join the Land Use Law Center on Facebook!
Connect with students, alumni, LULA graduates, and many others on the Land Use Law Center’s Facebook page.  See Center updates, photos, videos, event information, and more.   Click here to join our Facebook page.

LL.M. Student Selected as First Real Estate Fellow
The  Real Estate Law Institute of Pace's Land Use Law Center has selected Temisan Agbeyegbe to hold its first ever Real Estate Law Fellow position.   Temisan graduated from Georgia State University, where he was on the Dean’s List, with dual Bachelor of Arts Degrees in Journalism and Music Management.  He received his J.D. from Mercer University School of Law, in Macon, Georgia with an Advanced Certificate in Legal Writing and Research, and CALI awards in American Legal History, and Legal Writing.  In 2008, he authored an Economic Analysis of the Common Law published in the Mercer Law BLSA E-Journal; during the 2008-2009 academic year he served as managing editor for the journal.  Temisan is enrolled in dual LL.M. programs at Pace Law School, studying both Real Estate and Environmental Law.  He is expected to graduate from Pace Law School in 2010. He also speaks the Ibo Language, a Nigerian dialect, and is currently learning Spanish.

Attention Local Boards: Meet Your Training Requirement - Register Now
The Land Use Law Center is now conducting 4-hour training programs for municipal legislative, planning and zoning, and other administrative boards. Center staff, including Professor John Nolon, will come to your community to train your local board members and staff on a variety of land use topics. These interactive workshops are designed to benefit both new and experienced members. Each program is tailored to your community’s primary issues and concerns.  For each year, the Center can only offer this program to the first 5 communities that sign up. We will schedule these sessions during the course of the year.  The cost of each program is $2000, which includes Center staff review of municipal codes and ordinances, 4-hour workshop tailored to the municipality, workshop material, and guidebook.  Please contact Tiffany Zezula, Director of Training, at (914) 422-4034 or