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Concord and Keene, NH

News and Articles

Amy Manzelli Appointed to NHBA CLE Committee

BCM co-owner, Amy Manzelli, has been appointed to the New Hampshire Bar Association CLE Committee for the 2021-2022 bar year.  The CLE Committee is charged with arranging for and advising on the content of continuing legal education programs and facilitating the production of lectures, seminars, institutes and other instruction on legal subjects to keep the members of the NHBA abreast of progress of the law and encourage lawyers to exercise the highest level of professional integrity as Officers of the Court.

CLF Brings Free Legal Services to New Hampshire Farmers and Food Entrepreneurs

Legal Food Hub will help build a resilient local food system

Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) has launched its Legal Food Hub in New Hampshire. The hub is a first-of-its-kind network that connects smaller-scale farmers, food businesses, and food-related organizations with pro bono legal services to help start, grow, and operate their businesses.

“Local farmers and food businesses are essential pieces of a healthy and thriving community,” Sara Dewey, Director of CLF’s Farm and Food Initiative. “Too often, high fees and complicated legal issues are a barrier to entrepreneurs and farmers getting their businesses off the ground. Communities, residents, and our climate benefit when these businesses prosper, and it’s time they are given the tools they need.”

The goal of the program is to help provide legal services for farmers and food entrepreneurs to bring economic stability to the local farm and food sector. Economic stability for these businesses will also increase regional food production and build a more just food system for all New Englanders.

“Access to legal services and education is key to building the resilience of New Hampshire’s family farms and local food systems. The Legal Food Hub is an exciting and important new resource for small farmers and advocates working to support them,” said Seth Wilner of University of New Hampshire Extension. “This network will be a huge help to farmers and agricultural service providers alike. It is a wonderful complement to our existing resources.”

“Strengthening the sustainable local food system in New Hampshire is vital to the health and well-being of the Granite State,” said Amy Manzelli, an attorney at BCM Environmental & Land Law in Concord who is a Legal Food Hub volunteer. “The legal community has a critical role to play in the food system and BCM Law looks forward to serving New Hampshire’s farmers through the Legal Food Hub.”

“In New England, farmers enjoy a significant benefit because of the Legal Food Hub’s work to support local agriculture. The Hub offers pro bono legal services to family farmers looking to address a legal issue,” said Jim Gerritsen of Wood Prairie Family Farm. “Knowing Legal Food Hub has our backs allows us to focus on the farming we love.  Because of them we sleep better at night.”

More information about the Legal Food Hub is available at www.legalfoodhub.org.

Postponement for Casella’s Dalton Landfill

North Country Alliance for Balanced Change (NCABC), represented by BCM’s Amy Manzelli, and the Dalton Conservation Commission (DCC) have both requested a postponement of the permitting process for Casella Waste Systems’ proposed landfill in Dalton, New Hampshire. The landfill would impact 17 acres of wetlands, and Casella has denied access to the site to conduct site visits during this crucial time. Vernal pools and rare, threatened, and endangered species cannot be verified if a site visit isn’t conducted during the “growing seasons”. Amy states, “If the Dalton Conservation Commission is deprived of its legal rights to investigate to obtain such information, not only could the application process suffer from poor design and poor environmental stewardship, but also, legally, the process would be subject to invalidation upon appeal.”

Continue reading in the Caledonian Record.


NH Food Alliance – NH Agrarian Commons Discussion

On June 4th, BCM’s Amy Manzelli presented at New Hampshire Food Alliance’s Network Cafe entitled “A Focus on NH’s Farmland: New Conservation Models & Furthering Equity in Land Access”. 

 

2.6 Million square-foot Amazon Distribution Center Put on Hold

BCM’s Amy Manzelli, along with a group of Hudson, New Hampshire residents, have been working to oppose the placement of an Amazon distribution center on the current Green Meadow Golf Club property. The proposed plans for the construction of three warehouses are estimated to impact 2.8 acres of wetlands and 7 acres of wetland buffers and the current stormwater volume would no longer flow to wetlands and streams. The project has been put on hold after a successful appeal was filed by Amy, on behalf of 17 Hudson residents, last week.

Read the full story here.

NH Agrarian Commons – Normanton Farms

The New Hampshire Agrarian Commons, a subsidiary of the national Agrarian Trust, promotes land access and tenure for next generation farmers. Monadnock Community Land Trust (MCLT) has donated 63 acres of land to the NH Agrarian Commons. For the past 12 years this land was leased by Normanton Farms. The farm will now enter into a relationship with NH Agrarian Commons and sign a 99-year lease, guaranteeing that the farm can continue to provide pastured chicken, pastured pork, and grass-fed beef to the local community – even after Steve Normanton retires in the next 5-10 years.

Read more and donate here.

NHBA CLE April 30th 2021

BCM’s own Amy Manzelli will be joining a faculty of professionals this Friday, April 30th, as they speak about renewable energy facility siting. Amy regularly works with towns and the state of New Hampshire to navigate the permitting process of solar energy projects.

Register here and learn more through presented case studies of recently approved projects.

Association of Mass. Wetland Scientists – Ethics Presentation

BCM’s Jason Reimers will be making an ethics presentation for the Association of Massachusetts Wetland Scientists on April 22nd.

Register here.

Agrarian Commons – Little Jubba Farms

The Agrarian Trust works to break down the barriers preventing new farmers from accessing and securing land by creating Agrarian Commons. The Agrarian Commons holds land parcels in trust and gives the power back to the farmer, rather than the landowner. Somalian refugees in Maine have struggled with land security and tenancy in since 2014, forced to move and recreate their farm systems multiple times before BCM’s own Beth Boepple helped launch Little Jubba Agrarian Commons, making it possible for Muhidin Libah and his community to secure and control farmland.

Read about Muhidin and his community’s journey here

outdated solid waste management plan brings controversy to Dalton

Attention, and a lawsuit, has been brought to an application for a new landfill in Dalton, NH. Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) argues that the New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (NHDES) has not updated their solid waste management plan since 2003 although laws require updates every six years to keep up with the evolution of practices, technology, and alternatives to land-filling. North Country Alliance for Balanced Change (NCABC), represented by BCM’s Attorney Amy Manzelli, supports CLF in their position that NHDES cannot determine the accuracy of new permits when plans have not been updated since 2003. Amy states; “the  solid waste management plan, being 18 years old, cannot contain any up-to-date information about the preferences for source reduction, recycling, etc.” and that outdated plans “would have a dramatic and irrevocable impact on NCABC and other residents in the North Country for decades to come.”

Read the full article by the Caledonian Record here.