The Leader in Public Sector Law

The principal expertise of the firm is the practice of municipal law. KP Law represents over one-third of the cities and towns in the Commonwealth as their City Solicitor or Town Counsel. In addition, we provide special counsel services, including serving as labor and employment counsel, to other cities and towns, special districts, housing authorities, regional transit authorities and state agencies. The firm’s broad range of practice areas includes labor and employment, contracts, real estate, land use, environmental, town meeting, government information and access, procurement and construction.


APPEALS COURT AFFIRMS GEORGETOWN CONSERVATION COMMISSION’S
DENIAL OF ORDER OF CONDITIONS

KP Law is pleased to announce that A. Alexander Weisheit, on behalf of the Town of Georgetown, received a favorable opinion from the Massachusetts Appeals Court on Monday, May 31, 2019. The Appeals Court upheld an earlier Essex Superior Court finding that the Georgetown Conservation Commission acted appropriately in denying an Order of Conditions under the Georgetown Wetland Protection Bylaw (the “Bylaw”). See Brian Farmer v. Conservation Commission of Georgetown, 2019 WL 2323747 (2019) (Rule 1:28 Decision). Importantly, the Appeals Court upheld the Commission’s determination that the Bylaw’s requirement that new septic systems be set back a minimum of 100 feet from a wetlands resource area barred replacement of an existing leaching field with a “new” septic system serving a new single-family dwelling within the resource area. In particular, the Court held that the Applicant failed to rebut the Bylaw’s presumption of adverse impacts to resource areas from projects in close proximity to such resource areas, concluding that increasing the cumulative septic discharge within the buffer zone from 3 to 5 bedrooms was an “expansion of treatment” and “new construction” that would result in adverse impacts to the resource area.

Alex Weisheit is an Associate Attorney with KP Law, P.C. Attorney Weisheit works in the firm’s municipal land use practice group and represents Conservation Commissions throughout the Commonwealth.


KP Law was thrilled to see so many of you in Boston for the MMA Annual Meeting. We enjoyed talking with you about the latest trends in municipal law and how can provide assistance in these areas. Katie Laughman once again presented to a packed room on the topic of non-medical marijuana, while Lauren Goldberg addressed the process for charter adoption and amendment and the continuing challenges imposed by the Open Meeting Law. We were thrilled to sponsor WEMO and honored to listen to Senate President Karen Spilka talk about her goals for the upcoming session. It was also our pleasure to sponsor former Patriot Matt Light at the MMA Friday night dinner. The reception was once again well attended and lots of fun. It was terrific to see so many of you at the Members Breakfast on Saturday, a KP tradition for decades.

Below please find a pdf copy of each of the eUpdates we prepared for the 2019 MMA Annual Meeting. Note that prior year’s eUpdates are found on our eUpdates Resources page.

PDF An Act Protecting Youth from the Health Risks of Tobacco and Nicotine Addiction
PDF Firearms Licensing Update: Red Flag Law
PDF New Municipal Bond Continuing Disclosure Rules Adopted
PDF SJC Upholds Broad Termination for Convenience Clause in Public Contracts
PDF Osha Standards: Applicability to Public Sector Employment
PDF Public Records Law Update
PDF Public Records Law – Best Practices
PDF New Law Taxing and Regulating Short-Term Rentals
PDF Short-Term Rental Law – Key Provisions
PDF Open Meeting Law Update
PDF Emergency Powers of Municipalities
PDF Sample Notice – Pregnant Workers Fairness Act
PDF The Open Meeting Law and Social Media — Potential Pitfalls

KP Law Managing Attorney Lauren F. Goldberg
Included by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly
Among its 2018 Top Women of Law!

KP Law is pleased to report that Managing Attorney Lauren F. Goldberg has been recognized by Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly as one of its 2018 Top Women of Law.  Lawyers Weekly describes the Top Women of Law event as follows, “The Top Women of Law event celebrates outstanding achievements made by exceptional women lawyers. Each year Lawyers Weekly honors women attorneys who have made tremendous professional strides and demonstrated great accomplishments in the legal field, which includes: pro bono, social justice, advocacy and business. The awards highlight women who are pioneers, educators, trailblazers, and role models.”  Lauren will join the other honorees at a reception on Thursday, October 18 from 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM at the Marriott Copley Place Hotel.  More information about the honorees and the event can be found here.  The Firm congratulates Lauren for this special recognition.


We are pleased to announce that
Christopher J. Pollart
has joined KP Law as a Shareholder

and
Karla J. Doukas
has joined KP Law as a Member


Changes in Massachusetts Marijuana Law

In January, 2018, we updated our Guide to the Revised Law Legalizing Recreation Use of Marijuana. Knowing that communities throughout the state are likely to be addressing this issue in the months to come, we have linked that document here for your use.

A Guide to the Law Legalizing Non-Medical Marijuana
Revised January 2018
 


On January 19, 2018, Attorney Katherine D. Laughman presented at the Massachusetts Municipal Association Annual Meeting in Boston. Attorney Laughman was a member of the panel entitled, Marijuana Law: The Way Forward for Municipalities. Also speaking on the panel, which was moderated by Attorney John Goldrosen, were Cannabis Control Commissioner Katharine Doyle and Chief of the Attorney General’s Central Massachusetts Division Margaret Hurley. Attorney Laughman, presenting to a capacity crowd, provided a comprehensive overview of recent developments in the law governing adult use and medical marijuana, focusing on issues facing municipalities as they consider local regulation of these new uses. Her power point can be found here, and the firm’s most recent guidance can be found here.

Attorney Laughman presented to the Central Massachusetts Regional Planning Commission on February 2, 2018. She will be speaking on this topic at the Citizen Planner Training Collaborative Annual Conference on March 17, 2018, to will be held at Holy Cross College in Worcester. Please click here for a link to the program brochure.


Congratulations to our 2017 Super Lawyers

KP Law is pleased to report that Attorneys Jonathan M. Silverstein and Michele E. Randazzo, Members at the firm, and Attorneys Deborah I. Ecker and Janet Hetherwick Pumphrey, Counsel at the firm, were named as Super Lawyers for 2017. The designation is bestowed after a rigorous selection process, including independent research and peer nomination and evaluations. The final published list represents no more than 5 percent of the lawyers in the state of Massachusetts.


New – Amendments to Attorney General’s
Open Meeting Law Regulations

On October 16, 2017, we forwarded an eUpdate to our clients entitled, “Important Changes to the Open Meeting Law Regulations,”  summarizing the recent amendments to the Attorney General’s Open Meeting Law Regulations.  That document can be found at the link below.

Important Changes to the Open Meeting Law Regulations

 


Public Records Guidelines

As of July 1, 2017, the new Public Records Law requires Records Access Officers (RAOs) to prepare and post guidelines to assist persons seeking public records. If your community has not yet done so, the RAO should prepare and post such guidelines as soon as possible. The guidelines must be posted to the municipal website (assuming that the municipality has a website) and at municipal offices.

We have prepared sample guidelines RAOs may wish to use as an aid in preparing appropriate guidelines for their communities.

SAMPLE – Guidelines for Public Records Requests – PDF version

SAMPLE – Guidelines for Public Records Requests – Word Document version

The firm’s Public Record Law Resource Page can be found here, or for assistance from a member of the firm’s Government Information and Access Group, contact us at 617.556.0007.


Lawyer’s Have Heart!

KP Law sponsored a team in the annual Lawyers Have Heart road race on May 31, a 5K which raised funds for the American Heart Association.  Timothy Zessin, with a time of 22:14, led a contingent of nine KP runners along the course, which wound its way along the Innovation District waterfront.  The event raised over $297,000 to benefit the American Heart Association.  This was the 10th anniversary of the LHH race, and KP Law has sponsored a team in the event every year.

 

 


Congratulations to our 2016 Super Lawyers & Rising Star

KP Law is pleased to report that Attorneys Jonathan M. Silverstein and Deborah I. Ecker were named as Super Lawyers for 2016. The designation is bestowed after a rigorous selection process, including independent research, peer nomination and peer evaluations. The final published list represents no more than 5 percent of the of the lawyers in the state of Massachusetts. This is the second time Attorney Silverstein, a Shareholder at the firm and a member of the Manager Committee, has been so recognized. He was also previously selected as a Rising Star. Attorney Ecker joined the firm as Counsel in 2014, and has greatly contributed to our insurance defense and litigation practice areas.

KP Law congratulates Attorney Janelle M. Austin, a Senior Associate at the firm, on again being named a Rising Star for 2016. The Rising Star selection process mirrors the Super Lawyer selection process, and is for lawyers who are under a particular age or in practice for 10 years or less.

Congratulations Jonathan, Deborah and Janelle on this special achievement!

 


Want to know more about our eUpdates and how you can get on our distribution list, or about any of our other value-added services? Contact our Managing Attorney Lauren Goldberg at 617-556-0007.