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BCM Continues to Fight the Proposed Northern Pass Project

Amy Manzelli, Esq., in collaboration with the entire BCM team, especially Stephen Wagner, Esq., representing the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests, argued successfully against a Motion to Recuse two members of the Site Evaluation Committee filed by the Business Intervenor Group in the Northern Pass matter.  Amy asserted that the Group failed “to appreciate the difference between a decision-maker denying a motion for rehearing because the moving party failed to persuade her and a decision-maker who has predetermined the outcome prior to a hearing.”  The SEC has previously voted 7-0 to deny a certificate of site and facility for the proposed project.

Click here to read more.

Amy Manzelli Presents at Agritourism and Right to Farm Policy Summit

Photo courtesy of A.R. Braver.

Amy Manzelli shared her extensive Agritourism and Right-to-Farm knowledge with a full house at the Agritourism and Right to Farm Policy Summit sponsored by the Council of State Governments in Providence, Rhode Island on April 20-21, 2018. Amy discussed various issues that face northern New England agricultural professionals, including federal laws, local zoning and land use regulations, and the current legal trends regarding agritourism.  As always, Amy received rave reviews, as the attendees found her presentation to be informative and engaging.

 

BCM Attorneys Collaborate to Help Create the Farmland Access Legal Toolkit

Amy Manzelli and other BCM Attorneys have been working with Heyman Legal and the Vermont Law School Center for Agriculture and Food Systems (CAFS) to create the Farmland Access Legal Toolkit, which launched on March 8th.

The Toolkit is a free, web-based resource designed to provide legal tools to new farmers looking for land and retiring farmers ready to transfer land to a new generation.  BCM is proud of its collaborative efforts with CAFS and is looking forward to continuing to work with them to educate and inform farmers and other agricultural professionals well into the future.

 

Amy Manzelli Works with the NH Coalition for Sustaining Agriculture to Create the Local Regulation of Agriculture Toolkit

The New Hampshire Coalition for Sustaining Agriculture, in partnership with Amy Manzelli, has created the Local Regulation of Agriculture Toolkit. The Toolkit is destined to become a must-have resource for farmers and municipal decision-makers to guide the development of local farm-friendly regulatory environments in which agricultural enterprises can operate successfully.

The Toolkit: (1) identifies and provides a flow chart of state laws governing farming and agricultural activities; (2) provides recommendations for best practices for agriculture for local planning regulations and code enforcement processes; (3) discusses the relationship between state laws and town laws; and (4) contains resources for assistance for farmers and municipalities to address conflicts and pro-actively develop farm-friendly regulatory environments.

Amy has been on-the-road with the Coalition to promote the Toolkit at various professional events, including the NH Municipal Association Annual Conference, the NH Farm & Forest Exposition, and the NH Office of Strategic Initiatives Annual Spring Planning and Zoning Conference.  If you’ve been lucky enough to attend one of these presentations, you know that Amy’s presentation was very informative; in fact, one attendee went as far as to describe Amy from Agriculture as “awesome!!!”

 

BCM Excited to Underwrite Saving Special Places

BCM Environmental & Land Law was pleased to once again underwrite Saving Special Places, NH’s annual land conservation conference, which took place on Saturday, April 7th. This annual conference gathers land conservationists to provide focused and timely education and discussion about a variety conservation-related issues, including wildlife & forest management, conservation easement tax benefits, climate change adaptation, valuation of conservation easements, re-imagining conservation, accreditation, stewardship, timber harvesting, and option to purchase for agricultural value. Amy Manzelli presented a seminar on adverse possession.  Jason Reimers and Kelsey Peterson both also attended this highly successful event.

Kelsey Peterson Appointed to New Hampton Boards

BCM attorneys are encouraged to give back to the communities in which they live and work.  In line with this ideal, we are pleased to announce that Kelsey Peterson has recently been appointed as an alternate to both the Town of New Hampton Planning Board and the Town of New Hampton Conservation Commission. Kelsey is excited to pitch-in and contribute to her community.  We’re sure everyone will be appreciative of her knowledge, expertise, and hard-working attitude.  Congratulations, Kelsey!

 

Beth Boepple Honored by Mayor of Portland for Her Years of Public Service

Elizabeth Boepple, Esq., was recently honored with a Proclamation from Ethan Strimling, Mayor of the City of Portland, Maine, and the Portland City Council for her long history of service to the City of Portland.  Beth has served on the Portland Planning Board for over six years, and has served as Chair for the last two years.

During Beth’s tenure as Chair, the City has seen the “most sustained development since the Great Fire of 1866.” Under Beth’s “steady and sure guidance”, the City has implemented many improvements, including the adoption of its first solar energy ordinance, the creation of the first major public open space along the Stroudwater River, and the approval of millions of square feet of new housing, office, commercial, and hospitality development.

Congratulations Beth!  Keep up the good work!

Jason Reimers Melds Art and the Environment

Jason Reimers, Esq., was featured in an issue of the New Hampshire Bar Association Bar News for his artist pursuits outside the office. 

Jason earned his bachelor’s degree in anthropology before deciding to go to law school, and his interest in that field is evident in the pieces of art that he creates, which all include “found objects.”  Jason’s works of art include materials such as old pieces of old wood, metal, and wire, and even some old doorknobs! His pieces have been exhibited in art shows and you can even find one of his pieces hanging in a Manhattan apartment.  Currently, he’s working on a piece that’s been commissioned by a homeowners in Cambridge, MA, that includes an amalgamation of found objects from places such as New Hampshire,  Mexico, and Yellowstone National Park.

Click here to read the full story about Jason’s work, or stop by the Concord office to talk with him about it sometime. You may even be able to spot a few of Jason’s pieces around the office!

BCM Exhibits at the Maine Agricultural Trades Show

 

BCM was on the road, exhibiting at the Maine Agricultural Trades Show, from January 9-11th.  The show, sponsored by the Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry, is an annual tradition that provides an incredible opportunity for everyone involved in the agricultural industry (from producers to consumers and everyone in between) to come together to learn about current programs and new technologies via lectures, courses, meetings, and fun exhibits.  BCM was thrilled to be a part of this year’s program. 

 

BCM Helps to Defeat the Northern Pass Project

The attorneys of BCM Environmental & Land Law, PLLC, representing the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests, were successful in defeating the Northern Pass project at the New Hampshire Site Evaluation Committee.

The proposed project was seeking approval to construct a 192-mile transmission line from the Canadian border at the edge of the Great North Woods into the heart of the Merrimack Valley, which would have destroyed some of New Hampshire’s most treasured resources.  Almost three years since the filing of the petition, and after dozens of technical sessions and 70 days of hearings, the NH SEC unanimously voted 7-0 to deny a certificate of site and facility for the proposed project.

Click to see what the Concord Monitor, Union Leader, and InDepthNH had to say about the decision.