As part of the 1997 celebration of the twenty-fifth anniversary of the section we have complied all the annual reports of the Section Chairs into this written history of section:
- 1972-73: The Environmental Law Committee is created. Chairman Wade L. Hopping.
- 1973-74: There have been three principal areas of activity by the 1973-74 Environmental Law Committee to date.
AREA I: Regular monthly articles have been submitted by committee members to the Bar Journal for publication under the monthly byline: “Environmental law Notes.” Some of the articles have been simply composite reports, while others have been somewhat scholarly and focused on a particular aspect of environmental law. It is our hope that this regular feature can become a permanent part of the Bar Journal.
AREA II: Regional seminars have been planned, for the benefit of principally the attorneys from smaller counties and cities who might not otherwise have an opportunity to come in contact with the new environmental legislation (such as Ch. 380, F.S.) and who might benefit from a familiarity with the legislation. To date, the first such seminar has been held, under the auspices of Committee Vice-Chairman Guy Emerich of Punta Gorda.
AREA III: We are in the process of assembling a looseleaf notebook that hopefully will contain references to and descriptions of most of the federal and Florida legislation and administrative rulings governing environmental law. This notebook, we hope, might eventually serve as a “central clearing house” for attorneys who need a reference to statutes or rulings that might affect particular problems that they are handling.
In addition, the committee planned a second general meeting for late March to hear presentations from speakers pro and con regarding the anticipated Wetlands Legislation.
Jerry W. Gerde, Chairman.
- 1974-75: The Environmental Law Committee, recognizing the need to provide information to members of the Bar regarding environmental law, sponsored a series of seminars throughout the state. Each meeting of the Environmental Law Committee was utilized for the purpose of enabling practitioners to keep up with the ever changing state and federal regulations applicable to the environmental law practice.
Set forth below are the seminars which were sponsored by the committee:
1. The Orlando Seminar on State Environmental Laws Regulating Water Quality and Water Management. This seminar was held at the meeting on October 25, 1974. Speakers Ross A. McVoy, general counsel for the Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund, James Brindell of the Department of Pollution Control, and Ralph Bogardus of the Central and Southern Florida Flood Control District. The purpose of the meeting was to enable members of the committee and other interested guests to obtain an analysis of the function of the Trustees of the Internal Improvement Trust Fund, the Department of Pollution Control and the Flood Control Districts. Representatives of each of the agencies discussed the agency jurisdiction, the statutes pursuant to which their agency operated and answered specific questions from the audience.
2. The Tallahassee Seminar on State Environmental Agencies. This seminar was held on February 13 and 14, 1975, and was cosponsored by state agencies. It was a two-day in-depth presentation of an analysis of the state environmental regulatory agencies, the laws and rules and regulations pursuant to which they operate and the policies and goals. The seminar was organized by Kenneth Hoffman of the Attorney General’s office. Subsequent to the initial address by Attorney General Robert Shevin, there was an analysis of each agency by either the executive director or the executive director’s representative and the staff counsel. This enabled an understanding of not only what the purpose of the agency was as determined by the applicable laws, but also gave those in the audience an insight as to how the agency operated, how its decisions were made and its policies were implemented. Because of the way in which the seminar was structured by Kenneth Hoffman, there were lectures not only from attorneys, but from scientists and administrators. This seminar resulted in a unique understanding of the interrelationship of the functions of the attorneys and the environmental experts working with the various agencies.
3. The Miami Seminar on Private Compensation in Oil Spill Situations was held on February 26, 1975. Speaker was Thomas R. Post, attorney and port warden for the Port of Miami. This was an excellent presentation, not only of the history of the common law, but the current statutory laws relating to oil spills.
4. The Amelia Island Federal Environmental Laws Seminar. This seminar was held at Amelia Island on May 16 and 17, 1975, and involved an analysis of the applicable federal laws with an emphasis on those laws regulating air and water quality, the role of government in planning decisions and the federal land use legislative proposals. Among the speakers were Assistant Secretary of HUD and director of the New Communities Program, Otto Stolz; Colonel Emmett C. Lee, Jr., of the Army Corps of Engineers, Jacksonville District; Orin Briggs of the Regional Office of the Environmental Protection Agency; Vance Hughes, counsel for the Environmental Protection Agency in the Holland decision (a major decision interpreting the Federal Water Pollution Control Act); and Daniel O’Connell, past executive director of the Florida Environmental Land Management Study Commission.
In addition to the seminars, the committee sponsored the publication of the Environmental Law column in the Florida Bar Journal. Arthur Harper, editor of the column, did an excellent job in insuring that there were a series of excellent and highly topical articles regarding environmental law.
The committee also wishes to thank Linda Yates for her cooperation in connection with the Journal publication and Debbie Ginn who assisted with the seminars.
Joseph Z. Fleming, Chairman.
- 1975-76: Arthur L. Harper, Jr. is elected Chairman of the Section.
- 1976-77: Robert M. Rhodes is elected Chairman of the Committee. The Florida Bar elevates the Committee to a Section of the Bar: “The Environmental Law Section”. The Section publishes a formal newsletter.
- 1977-78: Frank R. Mastriana is elected Chairman of the Section.
- 1978-79: The Environmental Law Section has conducted two seminars so far this year. One dealt with the federal air emission and wastewater discharge permit systems, noise pollution, and economic assessments of environmental impacts. The second one focused on ocean and coastal law developments related to mining, oil exploration and spills, and coastal zone management. A third seminar is scheduled for June, and will address scientific and technical issues, as well as provide an update on Florida environmental legislation enacted during the 1979 session.
The section has completed a revision of the practice manual entitled Environmental Regulation and Litigation in Florida, and continues publishing articles in the section column of The Florida Bar Journal. Two meetings of the Executive Council have been held, and a third meeting of the council, along with a section meeting is scheduled for the Bar convention in June.
Jim Brindell, Chairman.
- 1979-80: The goals of the Environmental Law Section for 1980 were: (1) to reintroduce the section newsletter, (2) to improve and update the CLE manual, Environmental Regulations and Litigation in Florida, and (3) to upgrade the quality of the seminar materials and presentations.
To date, the section has presented two seminars, both of which have received positive comments from attendees and members of the Bar staff. Recent comments have been that materials furnished at the seminars, in particular the Industrial Site Development and Location seminar, were of superior quality, equal to or better than materials received at seminars on the national level. These seminars have been under the supervision and direction of education chairman, H. Gerald Reynolds, environmental counsel, Jim Walter Corporation. Prior to each seminar, a faculty meeting was held to discuss the presentations in order to avoid duplication and to ensure that each presentation was of maximum benefit for the time allotted. It was the goal of the section this year to avoid duplication of speakers, seek speakers on a national basis wherever appropriate and to encourage involvement by section members who had not previously participated in education programs. The final seminar will be at Amelia Island Plantation and will be an update of all major areas of environmental law including the most recent enactments the Florida Legislature.
The newsletter was revived this year. Under the co-editorship of Clifford Schulman and Judy Smith Kavanaugh, three regular issues of the newsletter are planned for 1980. To date, two issues have been published and the third was due for publication in late May. In addition, under the editorship of Tom Cloud a special issue of the newsletter was published in early April reporting on the Capital Governor’s Resource Management Task Force Report. Special thanks go to Lynn McFarland, staff artist on The Florida Bar staff, whose help has been invaluable.
The Environmental Regulations and Litigation in Florida handbook is being revised under the editorship of Rob Rhodes. This is a continuing project designed to provide continuity in the publication. The goal is to establish an outline of materials that may be used each year.
An effort was also made to maintain liaison with the Board of Governors. This goal was accomplished through the efforts of Hugh Glickstein, the Board liaison for the section, who closely monitored section activity.
The section did not make an effort to have its annual meeting at the Bar Convention in June because of historically poor attendance. In the future, the section will study returning the meeting to the Bar Convention.
The final goal was to continue quality articles in The Florida bar Journal. Under the editorship of Bob Martin, the section has presented in each issue of this year’ Florida Bar Journal an article of interest for section members. Editor Martin has made special efforts to work with authors to ensure readability and correctness of citations.
Ross McVoy, Chairman.
- 1980-81: In 1980-81 the Environmental and Land Use Law Section continued to operate at the high level of activity established during the previous year. The year began in July 1980, with an Environmental Law Update program at Amelia Island. The seminar drew one of the largest groups ever to attend a section program, and all who were there agreed that future year’s programs should be continued to be offered, at comparable locations, to review the major development in environmental law and legislative changes during the past year.
The goals for the section for 1980-81 were: (1) To continue publication of the section newsletter;
(2) To improve the CLE manual, Environmental Regulation and Litigation in Florida;
(3) To offer CLE seminar programs which would cover both basic and advanced environmental law problems;
(4) To offer a workshop series, limited to section members, which could cover detailed environmental and land use subjects which might not be appropriate for coverage in a traditional CLE format;
(5) To initiate section involvement in legislative revisions and administrative rule making; and
(6) To secure board of Governors approval for a change in the name of the section to the Environmental and Land Use Law Section.
The newsletter which was revived last year has continued publication. Two of three regular issues have already been published with a third to be published in late June. A possible special issue including materials presented at a section seminar is under consideration. Under the co-editorship of Judy Kavanaugh and Tom Cloud, the newsletter has continued to cover developments at both the state and federal level, as well as to consider local environmental land use and permit requirements.
The Environmental Regulation and Litigation in Florida handbook was revised extensively last year, and further expansions and revisions are being handled under the editorship of Cliff Schulman. In addition to supplementing and updating the annual volume, Schulman has arranged with Pam Pierce for editing the manual; he plans to publish the handbook in hardbound form, similar to most other Florida Bar CLE manuals. By providing an index, expanded table of contents and a hardbound form, Schulman and his committee sought to establish an outline of materials that would be more useful to members of the Bar.
Under the supervision and direction of CLE chairman Robert L. Rhodes, the section has presented two outstanding CLE programs thus far, and is planning a final update seminar to be held at Sanibel Island in July. The October 1980 program on Water Law, and the March 1981 seminar on Basic Environmental and Land Use Law drew better attendance and more favorable evaluations than prior years’ offerings. It was the section’s goal to include prominent national speakers, persons who were qualified in the technical aspects of these problems, and those who have not necessarily been involved in prior CLE programs. In all three respects, Rhodes and his steering committee members have far exceeded those goals. In the development of these programs, Rhodes was ably assisted by H. Gerald Reynolds, who was not only chairman-elect of the section, but also the chairman of last year’s education committee.
Recognizing that the budgetary and time constraints of traditional CLE courses might limit section educational opportunities in significant areas of environmental and land use practice, the section this year undertook to develop a workshop series of programs, following a format which as been successfully used by other sections of the American Bar Association. The workshops were established to provide a small group with an opportunity to examine, in detail, subjects which might otherwise not be covered. Workshops have been available only to section members, and the limitation on enrollment has allowed for more extensive dialogue among participants than at usual CLE courses. The first workshop in February 1981, covered hazardous waste management and was jointly sponsored by the section and the Florida State University Institute of Science and Public Affairs. The second workshop, covering sewage treatment and wastewater disposal, was offered in May. A third workshop planned as a part of the section program at the 1981 Bar Annual Convention will cover dredge and fill requirements and the process for determining dredge and fill jurisdiction. Particular thanks for the success of this workshop series should go to Gerre Reynolds, Sam Owens and Tom Cloud.
The section has undertaken a preliminary involvement in reviewing and recommending revisions to administrative rules. A committee, chaired by Paul Amundsen, has begun work with the Department of Environmental Regulation to review and consider revisions to Chapter 17-4 Florida Administrative Code.
At the annual meeting last year, section members approved a change in the section name to the Environmental and Land Use Law Section. This was done to reflect the changed nature of practice for most of the section membership. In March 1981, this change was approved by the Board of Governors effective immediately. Special thanks go to Judge Hugh Glickstein, Board liaison for the section, who worked with us in this change and keeping the board informed continually of section activity.
The section, although not holding an annual meeting at the Bar Convention in June, is holding a joint luncheon with the Administrative and Local Government Sections; the speaker will be David S. Broder, political correspondent for the Washington Post. Following the luncheon the section will offer an afternoon workshop on dredge and fill, followed by a reception.
Quality articles for the section column in The Florida Bar Journal were published throughout the year. Until we lost him to Pennsylvania and the Environmental Protection Agency, editorial Chairman Bob Martin provided direction, readability and interesting articles for each issue of the Journal.
The section undertook to increase its membership this year, and membership has expanded significantly in the last several months. Particular thanks go to John Henry Wheeler, who has directed an extensive campaign which has already brought new members and will bring in even more next year.
Last year’s chairman, Ross McVoy, was not allowed the luxury of retirement. He has chaired a committee reviewing student articles in the Dean Frank E. Maloney Memorial Writing Contest. The winning paper will be published in The Florida Bar Journal, and the winner will be the guest of the section at July’s Sanibel Island Update Seminar.
All of this was accomplished with the able assistance of the members of the executive council. At the start of the year, I told the members of the executive council that I expected it to be a working active council, and most council members delivered even more than what was expected of them.
On behalf of those who have derived benefits from belonging to the section and participating in these programs and activities, I wish to thank all of the persons who contributed to the success of the section for the year 1980-1981.
Roger D. Schwenke, Chairman.
- 1981-82 The Environmental and Land Use Section is alive and well in The Florida Bar – indeed, we have grown to some 700 attorneys. 1981-1982 was a very active year on many fronts for the section.
Our primary goal was to better educate section members in a constantly changing area of the law. To accomplish that goal, section educational activities were divided into CLE seminars and workshops. It all started with the Annual Update Seminar in July 1981 at Captiva Island attended by over 150 lawyers. The program was outstanding.
CLE seminars were coordinated by CLE Chairperson Judy Kavanaugh and the CLE Committee with three seminars planned for the year. The New Law of Hazardous Waste Management seminar was held in St. Petersburg in November. While attendance was poor, the quality of the program was very good. The second seminar was Land Use Litigation, held in Sarasota in early April and sponsored with the Local Government and Real Property Sections.
The final seminar will be the Annual Update Seminar to be held in August at Amelia Island. Credit for these fine CLE seminars should go to the CLE chairperson and her committee, Bob Rhodes, Bill Earl, Cliff Schulman, Ross McVoy, Boone Kuersteiner, Al Clark and John Hankinson.
The section has continued its workshops also. These programs have limited attendance, usually devoted to a specialized topic of interest to a smaller segment of attorneys. Workshops in 1981-82 covered the following: storm-water regulation, air permitting, basics in environmental law, sewage treatment, and case studies. Some of the workshops were free to section members. The workshops’ chairman was Roger Schwenke, ably assisted by Cliff Schulman, Bill Green, Debbie Malinsky, Tom Cloud, and Frank Schidman.
The section has continued its tradition of excellent articles in The Florida Bar Journal with Richard Hamann as editor. The lead article in the January issue of the Journal contained the winning paper in the Dean Maloney Memorial Writing Contest sponsored by the section. The contest is being held again this year, under the direction of Paul Gougelman and Bob Rhodes.
The section newsletter changed its name to the “Reporter.” Two editions have been mailed to section members with another issue due before the Bar year is over. “Reporter” co-editors were Silvia Alderman and Tom Cloud.
One initial goal was to explore the feasibility of certification. At this time we have not made much headway. The executive council members are currently reviewing the certification procedure approved by the Florida Supreme Court for the Trial and Tax Sections and are attempting to determine whether there is enough interest in the section to pursue certification further.
The section last year published a hardbound book entitled Environmental Regulation and Litigation in Florida. This year a supplement is being prepared under the editorship of Bill Register and an editorial board.
The section has also assisted the Department of Veterans and Community Affairs Bureau of Disaster Preparedness in developing a program on the legal aspects of flood plain management. In May, Ross McVoy was to make a presentation for the section at a circuit judges educational meeting being conducted by the Florida State Courts Administrator’s Office.
The section was pleased to participate in other Bar functions. We were involved in the Midyear Meeting and plan to be involved in the Annual meeting at Disney World. Our activities at these conventions were chaired by Sam Owens.
In conclusion, 1981-1982 has been a very active year in environmental and land use law. We could not have accomplished the many achievements without the assistance of Chairman-Elect Bob Rhodes and the executive council. I have delegated projects freely to section members, and they have responded in superb fashion. Our growth is directly attributive to this kind of effort.
Regardless of what may be happening to environmental and land use law in Washington, it is alive and well here in Florida!
H. Gerald Reynolds, Chairman.
- 1982-83 Over the last year public attention has been called more and more to the inter-related problems of environmental protection and land use management and planning. Headlines tell the tale of contamination and potential contamination of the nation’s surface and ground waters. Recent newspaper articles have questioned the ultimate fact of the Florida Keys under current land use planning laws and regulations. At this writing, numerous pieces of proposed legislation are being considered in Tallahassee designed to beef up Florida’s laws, especially in the area of ground water quality protection and hazardous waste management. In addition, “blue ribbon” citizen panels are grappling with issues concerning land development and population growth.
In this setting, the Environmental and Land Use Law Section (ELULS) has continued its long-term efforts to provide quality education to lawyers in the public and private sectors engaged in the practice of environmental and land use law. From the Annual Update Seminar at Amelia Island last August to the Water Law Seminar in Ft. Lauderdale in April, members of The Florida Bar were provided with the opportunity to obtain the most up-to-the-minute practical and substantive training available in these areas. In addition, the section’s popular workshop program continued. Included in the workshop presentations were a fundamentals course at the Mid-Year Meeting and an innovative session for the “public interest” lawyer held in March.
In addition to the seminars and workshops, the section also published the 1983 supplement to Environmental Regulation and Litigation in Florida, the Florida practitioner’s “Bible” in the area of environmental law. Work has also started on an entirely new volume of this book, to be issued in 1984.
Two significant new programs were instituted during the 1982-83 section year. A committee was appointed to develop a program to provide public information concerning environmental and land use matters to lay citizens in the state. The section hopes to develop an independent program in this area, as well as to work with the existing public affairs programs of the state environmental and land use agencies. Additionally, a committee has been established to begin to address the question of alternative, nontraditional forms of resolving disputes issues of a highly technical, scientific nature. The committee will evaluate the propriety of the development of a “science court” as well as the use of technical special masters and other alternative mechanisms.
1982-83 has been an exciting and challenging year in the environmental and land use area. The ELULS, through the excellent work of members of its executive council and many other sections members, has risen to the occasion and met this challenge.
Robert L. Rhodes, Jr., Chairman.
- 1983-84 This year has been one of new projects and a continuation of the hard work put in by the section over the past years. This year the section established and will award the first Judith Florence Outstanding Service Award in memory of Judith Florence who served as the section’s Bar staff liaison for several years. Silvia Alderman and Cliff Schulman did an excellent job in setting up the award, its rules and its administration and the section is very proud of this effort.
Since this will be an active year in the area of land use and environmental law in the legislature, the section has been following prefiled bills as well as the committee discussions on a variety of issues, including growth management and wetlands legislation. The executive council has taken no position on any of the bills, but through Terry Lewis and the section Legislative Review Committee is keeping the membership apprised of significant developments.
The Environmental and Land Use Law Section CLE program this year is particularly ambitious. After a resounding success at the Annual Update in August, thanks to last year’s CLE Chairman Bill Green and the chairman of the Steering Committee, Bill Earl, the section is literally in the black as far as CLE programs for the year. In order to continue the CLE programs established in past years, it was necessary for this year’s CLE chairman, Roger Sims, to ask the Bar CLE committee for an additional seminar date to permit a Land Use Law Seminar to alternate with the Water Law Seminar. The committee granted a request for a seminar date in May. The Workshop Committee, chaired by Debbie Malinsky, had a very successful Wetlands Workshop, planned by Doug Halsey in Tallahassee, and has two more workshops planned. These are being coordinated with other programs planned by the section at the Bar annual meeting and midyear meeting, chaired by Paul Grogelman. Sam Owens and Alan Gold, working with the Public Information Committee, have arranged with several professional groups for mutual educational programs. The section goal has been to have an integrated comprehensive continuing legal education program consisting not only of CLE seminars, but also workshops and other presentations for section members.
This year member participation has been greater than in any past year and all of the section’s committees are full. many of the committees, such as the Public Representation Committee and the Law School Liaison Committee, are in their initial year of organization, and will come back to the executive council with a recommendation for future activities.
Other established committees, including the Editorial Board of the Environmental and Land Use Litigation Law Handbook and the Workshop Committees, have been active this year. The Editorial Board, chaired by Tom Cloud, is reformatting the handbook and streamlining it to make it the “primer” for Florida environmental and land use law. Bob Wells, chairman of the Dean Maloney Writing Contest Committee, got an early start setting up this year’s competition and the response has been good. The section publications, the note in The Florida Bar Journal, edited by Bill Earl, and The Environmental and Land Use Law Section Reporter, edited by Tom Pelham and Larry Smith, have continued the quality the section expects and all contributing authors should be congratulated.
In conclusion, this has been a very successful year for the Environmental and Land Use Law Section. The assistance I received from all of the executive council members, and particularly from Chairman-elect Cliff Schulman and Secretary/Treasurer Silvia Alderman, has been above and beyond the call of duty, and all of the executive council, committee chairmen, as well as many individual members of the section have contributed to make this a very successful year in terms of continuing legal education and membership services.
Judith S. Kavanaugh, Chairman.
- 1984-85 At the beginning of my term of office as section chairman, I set three goals to meet by the end of my short and hectic tour of office: (1) continue and improve the section’s educational programs; (2) increase section membership to exceed 1,000 members; and (3) encourage and increase public interest group representation in section activities. With our section year presently in the third quarter, these goals are well on the way to being met or exceeded.
CLE Co-chairmen Roger Sims and Al Malefatto have achieved particular success in our educational programming for the year. Attendance at all CLE functions has exceeded all expectations and attendee critiques have left no question on the value of the programs and the excellent quality of speakers that have significantly contributed to the programs’ successes.
Membership Chairman Doug Halsey has increased section membership to 921 members-representing a substantial increase in section membership since the beginning of the year. I am positive that our 1,000- member goal is well within reach by year’s end.
Our Public Interest Representation Subcommittee has taken on new life and vitality under the direction of Committee Chairman John Hankinson. We are most hopeful that this committee will be able to meet and accomplish the goals and objectives set earlier in the year so that the “public interest” sector will received adequate representation and recognition in section activities and governance.
In other areas the section has begun to consider changes in long standing section policies. For the first time, the section determined to approach the Board of Governors for permission to advocate a position regarding pending legislation dealing with funding needs of state environmental agencies. In addition, our Technical and Scientific Subcommittee, headed by Jim Brindell and Earl Gallop, is attempting to explore further legislative action in the possible creation of an administrative procedure for the litigation or arbitration of complex scientific or technical problems by qualified scientists or other professionals. At present, a survey of the section has been circulated soliciting the membership’s views on such a legislative amendment.
Our section manual is also growing with the times and undergoing a metamorphosis of sorts. Recognizing that our vistas have been expanded to include land use law along with a traditional environmental law focus. Editor Tom Cloud and his editorial board are hard at work creating a two-volume CLE manual that will cover the waterfront (wetlands?) of both subjects. Volume I dealing with Environmental Law and Litigation is scheduled for publication and distribution at our Annual Update Seminar August 16-17 at Don Ce Sar Beach Resort in St. Petersburg. This new format will include a totally new binder system that, hopefully, will make yearly updates more convenient, less expensive and more efficient for section members. Volume II dealing with land use issues is scheduled for next year’s distribution.
Clearly, the fields of environmental and land use law have taken on new and expanding dimensions in a relatively short span of years. Recent legislative changes in 1983 and 1984 have indicated that the field will only expand even more in the future and proposed legislative bills for 1985 confirm this trend. I believe that prior leadership of the section has prepared us well for these expanding vistas and I hope that this year’s activities will be another brick in an already firm foundation.
Clifford A. Schulman, Chairman.
- 1985-86 The Environmental and Land Use Law Section has had another active year. I am pleased to serve as chairman of the section during a time when it is busier than ever. We have finally crossed the threshold of 1,000 member, and were among the fastest growing sections in the Bar.
Stimulating our section’s growth is the issue of growth itself; Florida’s new growth management bill and the new administrative regulations which are being promulgated have accomplished significant changes in most environmental and land use laws, and there are more practitioners than ever before who need to know about these changes.
Under the leadership and planning of our CLE seminar co-chairmen, Al Malefatto and Tom Pelham, our section has sponsored two seminars on enforcement and water law, and cosponsored two growth management seminars with the Florida State University College of Law. Our section will sponsor two additional seminars on land use law and annual legislative update in May and August. In addition, our CLE workshop chairman, Doug Halsey, has planned three workshops dealing with public interest advocacy, environmental issues for real estate lawyers, and the Marketable Record Title Act.
Perhaps our section’s greatest contribution to continuing legal education comes from our complete redesign or the section’s CLE manual. The manual will be published in a looseleaf format with volume I devoted to environmental law and volume II devoted to land use law. Volume II will be jointly sponsored by the Real Property, Probate and Trust Law Section. Our CLE manual co-chairmen, Tom Cloud and Jim Brown, have arranged for editorial support form the Stetson University College of Law. This will result in a standardized looseleaf format which will be edited in a consistent manner each year, and will provide the practitioner with the leading authority on environmental and land use law in the State of Florida.
I am pleased to report that many of the public interest programs started by our immediate past chairman, Cliff Schulman, have been expanded under the quiet leadership of Richard Hamann. His committee is working on a survey concerning public interest involvement, a workshop on public interest advocacy and a public interest column in our section newsletter. He has also found authors for articles in The Florida Bar Journal and the CLE manual.
Our section has also recognized the need to involve other professionals in our activities. In the environmental and land use field, engineers, planners, biologists, hydrologists, and similar professionals are invaluable. We are proposing that they are invited to be affiliate members in our section, and efforts are being made to involve these professionals in our CLE activities.
Inevitably, growth creates additional work. This report merely skims the surface of what is being accomplished by the section. This year we have 16 committees and 16 chairpersons dedicated to the work of the section. It is apparent that the field of environmental and land use law is one of the fastest growing areas in the state, and it is a comfort to know that our section’s committees are chaired by able leaders who be around to lead us into the next decade.
J. Sam Owens, Jr., Chairman.
- 1986-87 The Environmental and Land Use Law Section topped 1,200 members this year. As we enter our 10th year, the section can look upon its accomplishments with great pride. The section recently embarked upon a unique new program by approving a bylaws amendment to allow affiliate membership status for engineers, biologists, planners and other professional who practice in the environmental and land use law fields. The response from the professional community has been very encouraging. This process opens significant new avenues of interchange and communication between the professions.
The section is continuing its extensive CLE seminar and workshop program. A workshop or seminar has been scheduled for practically every month covering everything from hazardous waste to sewage to land use. Work has progressed on Volume II of the Florida Environmental and Land Use Law treatise which will focus on land use issues. The Bar staff informs us that the volume will be available for distribution this summer. Work is also underway to publish an update to Volume I of the treatise, which was published last year.
The section has continued its Dean Maloney law student writing contest and is publishing a directory for law school and law student use listing attorneys in our practice area.
Committees of the section have been working with professional organizations and the members of the judiciary to organize informational seminars. The public interest practice committee has been studying means of assisting practitioners who provide those types of services.
The section newsletter, The Reporter, was expanded in format this year and is a major source of case law and legislation updates, news and information of benefit to the membership.
In order to serve the section better, a new organizational structure was developed this year. Committees were placed under the leadership of three divisions under the direction of Executive Council members. The divisions are: Education (CLE seminars, CLE workshops, CLE manual – Volume I, CLE manual – Volume II, midyear meeting, annual meeting, Maloney writing contest, law school liaison and CLE Committee liaison); Special Services (special master, legislative review, judicial liaison and public interest representation); and Planning and Membership (Florida Bar Journal column, membership and planning, public information and awareness and section Reporter). The planning function continues to receive greater attention as we begin to focus on the needs of the section for the next 10 years.
Members who served on the Executive Council or as committee chairs this year are Silvia Alderman, Tom Cloud, Roger Sims, Terry Lewis, Sam Owens, J. J. Brown, Paul Gougleman, Bill Green, Doug Halsey, Richard Hamann, Mary Smallwood, Lee Chotas, Richard Lee, Al Malefatto, Tom Pelham, Irene Quincey, Bob Wells, Dan Thompson, Gary Stephens, Valerie Settles, Debbie Orshefsky, Marty Dix, Cari Roth, Vance Kidder, Jim Brindell, Mary Hansen, Richard Brightman and Bill Hyde. Their efforts are sincerely appreciated as are those of countless others who serve the section. Special thanks to Peggy Griffin, our Bar staff liaison.
Silvia Morell Alderman, Chairman.
- 1987-88 As chairman of the Environmental and Land Use Law Section, it is now my privilege to relate to you our annual report for the 1987-1988 year. When I joined the section in 1979, there were approximately 170 members. Today our membership (excluding affiliate membership) has grown to 1,430 member. We have probably been the fastest growing section of The Florida Bar over the last decade.
The section is continuing and expanding its extensive CLE seminar and workshop program. A workshop or seminar has been scheduled for practically every month covering issues such as land use, wetlands, water law, and resource recovery. Our two-volume manual has virtually sold out its first printing, with 1,035 copies of Volume I and 888 of Volume II having been sold as of November 30, 1987. In a time of growing concern over the Bar’s budget an the impact of sections on that budget, our section of the Bar has been a moneymaker.
The section is continuing its Dean Maloney law student writing contest and is updating its previously published directory for law school and law student use, listing attorneys in our practice area. The production of our newsletter is in the capable hands of Carl Roth and Mary Hansen, who are doing a fine job. Our affiliate program has now reached over 100 members, and continues to grow. Our section is also working directly with Florida’s law schools – including Florida State University and Stetson College of Law – in a variety of programs. We have just recently embarked with FSU on the development of a legislative history program to track the development of environmental and land use legislation. This program, which was developed by Larry Sellers, Bill Green, and Professor Donna Christie, may help to establish new procedures applicable to other areas of legislative change. In addition, Professor Jim Brown and law students from Stetson Law School are playing a vital role in the continued updating of the section’s manual.
Where is our section headed? Undoubtedly, our membership will continue to grow – this is a growth area of the law. We will also have to continue improving the quality of our educational programs, since I believe we can expect more competition from private CLE companies with the creation of mandatory CLE. I personally believe our section will thrive on this competition, and that the section will continue to produce quality continuing legal education programs.
Efforts of Executive Council members and committee chairmen are sincerely appreciated, as are those of countless others who serve the section. The membership should also be aware of the special efforts of Peggy Griffin, our Bar staff liaison, who has been of immense help.
Thomas A. Cloud, Chairman.
- OBSERVATIONS ON THE SECTION’S 10-YEAR ANNIVERSARY
Born in obscurity and unrecognized in infancy by other Section behemoths of the Bar, our Section has established an undeniable place in The Florida Bar educational hierarchy in the 10 years since its inception. These observations have only one purpose: To remind us how we arrived at this place and what knowledge might be useful for the future.
The Section’s period of gestation was about three years. It was called the Environmental Law Committee. Specific parentage is vague, but there were a couple of Chairmen whose names can actually be recalled: Wade Hopping, Jerry Gerde, and Joe Fleming. Everything was different then. There were a few members, a book or two was published, and much of the thrust, as Joe Fleming so aptly described it, was “divulging” that the subject existed; there was little to “update.” Meetings were had at the same time the Bar met so the odds on having attendance would improve. Trying to start a prairie fire with a pack of wet matches was no easy task.
Behemoths of the Bar awoke. The Local Governmental Law Section opposed the 1976 petition of the Committee to become a section as did the Administrative Law Section. Bob Rhodes (Robert M.) argued the petition and with characteristic diplomacy secured approval for delivery of the Environmental Law Section into the world of the Florida Bar. Early champions of the Section’s birth, such as Art Harper, Jim Brindell, and Bill Register, never doubted the youngster’s potential; it came into this world with 400 members, give or take a hundred.
The Section’ embryonic development left one distinct genetic imprint: a personality bent for ease of participation by all Section members in Section activities.
There are those basic characteristics of the child that should be carried into its “terrible teens” which may serve it well into maturity:
Open Participation: The Section has always been blessed with an attitude of encouraging everyone to participate in writing, seminars, and management of Section activities. The Handbook article on Construction Activities in Waters of the State began as an article on Chapter 253 jurisdiction with a single author. It has greatly expanded and now has at least a half dozen authors. This is typical. Article and authors in the Environmental Regulation and Litigation Handbook have quadrupled since the initial publication. Participation means everyone’s viewpoint gets expressed. This should never change.
Ascendancy to Leadership: One of the early Committee and Section problems was securing a continuity of leadership and selection of leaders based on real contribution. In the early 80′s a group of individuals, most of whom were serving on the Executive Council literally planned the succession of chairmen (assuming the continued hard work of those in the lineage) up through 1987. Every person who has led the Section since the early 80′s earned through hard work (not popularity or membership in a particular firm or political clout) the right to chair the Section. Once a chairperson was elected by one vote – because only one person showed up to vote!
It has also helped to allow the chairperson to provide his or her own brand of leadership. The chair should be a “strong mayor” type position. Ron Mastriana (a late 70′s chairman) and Rob Rhodes were both successful, but their styles differed substantially. A change in style is good. The Section must be fluid, accommodating, and not overly institutionalized.
Superior Writing Product: Openness in participation lead to a proliferation of writing product of outstanding quality. Environmental education early on was simple because the focus was narrow. Almost anyone could memorize all the Chapter 120 environmental cases because there weren’t that many. Burgeoning environmental laws, rules, cases, and increase in the lawyer population practicing in this area has made such detailed knowledge impossible. Recall, if Roger Schwenke or Mary Smallwood didn’t show for the annual update, no one knew anything about air quality for the next year. The writing quality has improved proportionately with the need. This quality is absolutely essential to the future of the Section if it is to retain its purpose to educate members to be competent in the environmental and land use areas.
In the early 80′s the Environmental Law Section Newsletter began publication on a quarterly basis. Cliff Schulman, Judith Smith Kavanaugh, and Tom Cloud worked hard to keep the “letter” current. It was designed to fill the gap between Handbook publications. By the end of the decade the newsletter had been renamed The Reporter, and its format improved and expanded. My recollection is that Silvia Alderman played a key role enhancing that publication which continues to evolve. It has limitations, born primarily from the lack of a cohesive information flow out of Chapter 120. For example, the McDonald case requires all agencies to keep a record of precedents and cases. This is virtually impossible. Environmental cases today proliferate at an almost geometric rate, but there is no reliable retrieval system (there are reporting systems) to call these cases up to determine their precedent value. Consequently, The Reporter is a valuable sentinel of particular cases of note, and articles on subjects, sometimes esoteric, important to practicing environmental law attorneys.
The Environmental Regulation and Litigation Manual has had many champions since its inception. Joe Fleming fought a pitched battle over whether the manual would be loose leaf or hard bound. On such a seemingly mundane subject it is truly difficult to express the intensity and ferocity of the debate. One would not think such a subject that important. It would seem that utility would be the touchstone for any decision. The Bar, however, can sometimes be bound to tradition. Tradition overlooks utility, and need, because there is comfort in administering institutionalized requirements. Fleming, undaunted, ultimately prevailed.
Cliff Schulman is responsible for the initial quantum leap improvement in the quality of the Handbook. Notably, he employed outside help to timely put the “monster” single edition together. Such an approach has been continued through J.J. Brown and the Stetson student he employs. It’s tough for one busy counsel (Jay Jurgens and I have been working with Irene Quincey) to coordinate the efforts of other busy attorneys to produce the formidable product (2 volumes) we now publish.
Seminar Participation: Consistent seminar quality and quantity came of age at the end of the 1970′s when H. Gerald (“Gerre”) Reynolds became Section Education Chairman. His “The Lawyers Role in Industrial Development and Site Selection” was a gem. Top notch speakers and invitations to other disciplines (i.e., engineers) were features of that effort. A wrinkle developed in the mid 80′s with specific topics that needed presentation to a limited number of Section members. Roger Schwenke (former chairman) came up with the “workshop” concept. It still works. Jake Varn, Bill Earl, Tom Cloud, and Sam Owens (another former chairman) and of late, Tom Pelham, Al Malefatto and Doug Halsey presented us with Seminars and outstanding quality individual presentations. (Everybody got a chance to participate!) Rob Rhodes (Robert L., Jr.)(still another former chairman) probably got the vote for best written outlines – he set a standard of excellence most of us tried to emulate.
Executive Council: It is important to have staggered turnover of members of the Council and to have a membership of persons willing to work. Membership should continue to be rotated, should have a geographical mix and council members who represent governmental clients, corporate clients, public interest clients, and private sector clients. If the members are willing to work, there should not be a hesitancy to increase the Council size. Fresh troops are a necessity. No one group from any sector or geographical area should be allowed to “run” the Section.
A number of years ago the Council wisely voted to make past chairmen ex-officio members. Prior to that time there have been several past chairmen that continued to serve on the Council. Those individuals, and the other Council members, felt it was best for the Section that ex-chairpersons serve in an ex-officio capacity. This allows past chairpersons to contribute to Council decisions, but allows new or younger participants in the Section the opportunity to manage the Section.
Advisory Roles in Legislation and Agency Management: There are areas where the Section can provide valuable assistance to the Legislature and governmental agencies. This role should be undertaken very carefully so as not to evidence a bias for one segment or another of the membership. The Section has always been helpful in connection with salaries for counsel, particularly DER. This should continue and be expanded because the Section has so many more resources now than in the past.
Certification: Another albatross we hung on Fleming a couple of years ago. A concept always voted down. Most of us shifted from one field to another (i.e., “dredge and fill” to “land use” to “waste water”) on any given day. Trying to establish a person is qualified in any one of a myriad of such categories is not a practical use of Section time.
Bylaws: A responsible person needs to know what they say. John Henry Wheeler, an attorney for the South Florida Water Management District at the time, as an officer of the Council actually read them; on several occasions called our attention to potential “slips” in their observance. Time and money were saved. The Dean Maloney Memorial Writing Contest was begun to provide a liaison between the section and law students interested in our area. Professor J.J. Brown, Paul Gougelman and others put shoulder to wheel to get this fine program started. These types of ideas should continue.
The sad and untimely loss of Judy Florence, our tireless and talented Bar Section Coordinator, to cancer was tough. If nothing else, perhaps this commentary will perpetuate the memory of her contributions to the Section’s growth. Peggy Griffin, our present Coordinator, is a good one. The right Coordinator makes a difference.
Where are we now? We have 1,200 members. Somewhere along the line we changed our name from the Environmental Law Section to the Environmental and Land Use Law Section. We have three divisions (Education, Planning and Membership, and Special Services). Within these divisions there are 15 different committees or activities administered by the Section. Associate (nonlawyer) memberships apparently are being encouraged. Since non-Bar members are to practice under Chapter 120, Fla. Stat., these persons (such as Charles Lee of the Audubon Society) should be considered. Also, we can learn much from planners, engineers, and other professionals. It’s really quite amazing how much we have grown in one decade.
This growth has been driven by the passage of environmental and land use laws requiring competent legal advice. Although what were considered comprehensive laws were passed in 1957, it was not until the 1960′s that air and water pollution control laws and major amendments to the dredge and fill laws were passed, and not until 1972 that water management and major land use laws came into being. The first major reorganization of environmental agencies did not occur until 1975. From the mid 70′s on, Florida has passed a compendious array of environmental and land use legislation, as well as “adopting” various federal programs. Local and federal governmental regulation has increased twenty fold. There weren’t any environmental “givens” in the formative days; the most strident environmentalist of that era would be considered an anachronism today.
As noted at the outset, the only utility of this note is the thought that the current Section leadership may give to those concepts that helped put us where we are now and how applicable they are to the future.
1988-89 I am happy to report that the Environmental and Land Use Section is doing well in all respects. We now have more than 1,600 members and a growing group of affiliates (environmental professionals) who add diversity and technical expertise to may of our programs.
We have outgrown some of the resort locations previously used for annual meetings and major seminars. The largest enrollment ever, 398 people attended the August, 1988 Update Seminar at Amelia Island. The 1989 Annual Section Meeting and Update Seminar will be held at the Registry in Naples in August, and we expect this location to be workable and enjoyable.
The section agreed to co-sponsor a tour of the Stanton Energy Center in Orlando as part of the June, 1989 annual bar convention. Section leadership is excited about this opportunity for “hands on” experience and will continue looking for innovative ideas to promote education about the environment. Please let us have your thoughts.
We are financially sound, as in the past, and project a positive fund balance for the end of the 1988-1989 term.
One of my major initiatives this year deals with the relationship between our section and the central programs of The Florida Bar. I have established an ad hoc advisory committee to the chair and have emphasized the importance of our regular participation in meetings of the Bar CLE Committee, Board of Governors, and Council of Sections. As our section grows, I see an important need for pro-active and effective communications, rather than simply responding when the Bar “does something.” I believe these efforts will be well received and I expect us to have a meaningful voice in general Florida Bar matters during future years.
We have seen a continuing evolution of the public interest activities of our section, including a significant workshop and the publication of a directory of those lawyers who are interested in accepting public interest cases. I hope the public interest Bar will continue to support these efforts by attending programs, volunteering to accept leadership roles, and otherwise offering their time and energy.
Our Executive Council continues to work diligently toward producing outstanding CLE programs, publications, law school involvement, growth in membership by both attorneys and affiliates and meaningful projects such as a pilot program on legislative history for environmental bills. We believe these efforts will benefit members of the section and the Bar in general. Of course, we welcome your comments and suggestions on any of our section activities.
I would like to thank our Executive Council and each person who chaired a committee this year. I would also like to thank those who actively worked as members of a committee or in support of our council. Space does not permit a complete listing of these people, unfortunately. However, I will recognize key efforts at the annual meeting next August in Naples. I hope to see you there.
Roger W. Sims, Chairman.
- 1989-90 The Environmental and Land Use Law Section of The Florida Bar now has 1,718 members. Additionally, the section has an affiliate membership of approximately 140 members composed of scientists, engineers, planners, and other professionals in related environmental disciplines.
During the 1989-1990 fiscal year, the section will conduct five continuing legal education seminars and four workshops. To date, seminars and workshops providing a general environmental and land use law update, a review of growth management and concurrency, solid waste regulation, local government environmental regulation, funding cleanup activities, and citizen enforcement have been conducted. More than 850 lawyers and affiliate members of the section have attended and benefitted from these continuing legal education activities. Prior to year’s end, the section will conduct seminars and workshops on coastal construction and the mechanics of environmental litigation. The year will conclude with the section’s annual update on environmental law which is to be held August 16-19, 1990, at the Breakers in Palm Beach.
For the first year in the section’ history, the Dean Maloney writing contest for the best environmental law paper produced by a student at a Florida law school will include cash prize to the first place winner of $1,000 and a $1,000 donation to the winner’s law school. The intent of the section is to increase participation in the contest and elevate the quality of paper content.
The Environmental and Land Use Law Section has produced an expanded directory of its members. This year the directory will include all affiliate members and provide a detailed cross-reference of areas of subspecialty of practice of all listed practitioners with environmental and land use law.
During 1989, a two-year project carried out pursuant to a grant to the Florida State University College of Law Policy Studies Clinic was completed. The study is a comprehensive legislative history of the Florida Solid Waste Management Act of 1988. The legislative history documents is a voluminous and encyclopedic history of all pertinent information relevant to the passage of the Solid Waste Management Act. It is hoped the effort will be useful in providing more complete legislative history for landmark environmental legislation in Florida so judicial construction of complex law will be assisted.
Finally, the Executive Council of the Environmental and Land Use Law Section held its first annual retreat on February 9-11, 1990, at the Checca Lodge in Monroe County. The purpose of the retreat was to focus section activities and identify new programs appropriate for the section to undertake. Recommendations approved by the Executive Council for action are the following:
1. The CLE and Affiliate Membership committees will develop guidelines for nonattorney speakers at seminars and workshops.
2. The Affiliate Membership Committee will begin development of a technical bibliography to assist in environmental and land use practice and litigation.
3. The Affiliate Membership Committee together with the CLE Manual Committee will develop a technical primer for lawyers.
4. Creation of a speaker’s bureau to identify competent speakers with expertise in discrete environmental and land use topics who are willing to donate time.
5. Develop a procedure for the Environmental and Land Use Section to take positions on legislative issues.
6. Develop alternatives for creation of an environmental law employment clearinghouse either through the Section Reporter or some other medium.
7. Appoint a pro bono coordinate to explore ways section members may provide pro bono services in the environmental and land use law areas.
8. Donate $5,000 to the newly-created Environmental Education Council for the development of educational materials explaining the general scope and nature of environmental and land use law.
9. Donate Volumes I and II of Environmental and Land Use Law and Litigation Manuals to all circuit court libraries.
Terry E. Lewis, Chairman.
- 1990-91 As chairman of the Environmental and Land Use Law Section, it is my privilege to report on our section’s activities and achievements during the 1990-91 year. The section continues to grow. We how have 1,884 regular members and 143 affiliate members who practice in environmental and land use law-related fields.
We have a very active section. The section’s activities are carried out by five officers, a 16-member executive council, 20 committee chairpersons and dozens of committee members. They are assisted by our outstanding Bar staff coordinator, Peggy Griffin.
The section again has an extensive CLE program. Under the leadership of our CLE program leaders, Dennis Stotts and Mary Smallwood, the section is sponsoring five seminars and four workshops. The seminars include such diverse topics as land use conflicts; wildlife habitat, and land use law; superfund; water law, water rights, and water policies; and a general environmental and land use law update. The workshops will address the mechanics of zoning and land use law; wetlands regulation and mitigation; handling cases before local governments; and growth management problems and solutions in the 1990′s. Almost a thousand people have attended our CLE programs thus far. The section will conclude the year with its annual meeting and environmental and land use update program to be held on August 15-17, 1991, at the new Ritz-Carlton Hotel on Amelia Island.
The section also continues to improve its outstanding two-volume manual on environmental and land use law. Under the leadership and guidance of our CLE manual co-chairmen, Professor Jim Brown and Ralph DeMeo, Volume I is being revised this year. The Stetson University College of Law is again providing editorial support for the manual project. Two new committees were created this year. The Committee on Public Environmental Education chaired by Cathy Sellers, promotes and encourages public environmental education programs. The Committee on Ethics in Environmental and Land Use Practice, chaired by Dan Thompson, seeks to give greater emphasis and attention to ethical considerations.
Our section continues to sponsor the Dean Maloney writing contest for the best environmental law paper authored by a Florida law school student. The section awards a $1,000 cash prize to the first place winner and a $1,000 donation to the winner’s law school. Also, the section will continue its annual contribution of $1,000 to the FSU Journal of Land Use and Environmental Law.
The section’s Executive Council held its second annual retreat on February 15-17, 1991, in Clearwater. Our second retreat focused on three areas: 1) a comprehensive review of the section’s CLE programs; 2) section policy and procedures regarding proposed legislation; and 3) improving access to the legal system. Suzi Ruhl, who chairs the section’s Public Interest Committee, presented to the executive council a variety of proposals for improving access to the legal system. Of special interest are the following decisions made by the executive council on these important issues:
1) Develop an environmental legal clinic to provide counsel to indigent on environmental and land use matters.
2) Develop a referral network of lawyers to handle environmental and land use cases on a pro bono basis.
3) Confer and coordinate with existing legal service organizations about the availability of environmental and land use lawyers to provide legal services in these fields to indigents on a pro bono basis.
4) Compile forms for use by lay people in environmental and land use matters.
Financially, the section is in very good shape. We currently have a surplus in our budget and we are budgeted to have a significant surplus at the end of this year.
In sum, the Environmental and Land Use Law Section is a rapidly growing section; it is very sound financially; its CLE programs are of high quality and well-attended; and it is working hard to promote improved environmental education both among members of the Bar and the public and to meet our obligation to enhance access to the legal system through pro bono activities. I want to thank all past and present section officers, executive council members, committee chairpersons, and members for their efforts in helping the section to achieve this strong position.
Thomas G. Pelham, Chairman.
- 1991-92 I appreciate this opportunity to report on the activities of the Environmental and Land Use Law Section. Our section membership has recently passed 2,000, demonstrating continued growth in our section and continued interest in the area of environmental and land use law. I am also pleased to report that as of December 31, 1991, our section’s fund balance was $84,332, which exceeds the fund balance at the beginning of our fiscal year by approximately $17,000. As a section, we are in good shape financially.
Our section has always prided itself on the quality of the section’s continuing legal education programs. For the 1991-92 year, we are again presenting a full slate of programs covering issues from local government land use regulations, to pending changes in wetlands regulation, to environmental permitting, to lenders’ environmental liability, and more. Our section’s annual meeting and annual update seminar, which is always a popular and successful event, will be held in August at the Registry Resort in Naples.
Another area of emphasis this year is access to justice. Following the direction of the Florida Supreme Court, our section has embarked upon an ambitious access to justice program, and has established a committee for access to the legal system, chaired by Suzi Ruhl. The activities which her committee has undertaken include:
1) A citizen’s workshop on environmental law, to be held in Orlando on May 16;
2) A citizens’ handbook to coincide with the workshop;
3) Informational tables at Earth Day activities throughout the state; and
4) The establishment of environmental law internships, funded by a $1,000 grant for each internship, at each of the state’s law schools.
It is our hope and expectation that through these initiatives, public access to the legal system in environmental and land use matters will be enhanced.
Another task our section has taken on this year is a closer look at the representation of clients before local government zoning and land use boards by nonlawyers, a matter which is quite prevalent in hearings before local governmental boards which hear land use matters, that parties are represented by nonlawyer professionals, such as architects, engineers, or planners. Particularly in light of the increased complexity of legal issues involved in these matters, several of our members have questioned whether such nonlawyer representation constitutes the unauthorized practice of law. Our section’s Executive Council has established an ad hoc committee to look into this issue and make recommendations for further action, if necessary. The ad hoc committee has circulated a petition to our membership, which includes as affiliate members many nonlawyer professionals engaged in the environmental and land use fields, to try to gauge whether a real problem exists and is in need of correction. At the time of this writing we planned a detailed discussion of this issue at our Executive Council’s retreat on May 2-3.
Finally, an issue which is currently before the Board of Governors is the extent to which sections may engage in legislative activities. This has not been a major issue for us because our section is primarily made up of members of three interest groups; the government sector, the private business sector, and citizen group representatives. Consequently, our section typically cannot reach a consensus on most environmental legislative issues, which tend to be controversial; so, for the most part, we have refrained from any active lobbying as a group. An exception did recently arise, however, when our Executive Council passed a resolution endorsing legislation to rename Flagler Beach State Park in memory of Gamble Rogers. Rogers, a nationally renowned folk singer and conservationist, tragically drowned in the ocean off Flagler Beach State Park last October. Through his stories and his songs, Gamble Rogers did much to encourage the conservation of Florida’s natural resources and natural beauty. Our Executive Council overwhelmingly agreed it would be a fitting tribute to have a state park named in his memory. The legislative committee of the Board of Governors approved our resolution, and the bill authorizing renaming of the park in Gamble Rogers’ honor passed overwhelmingly in the Florida Legislature.
Alfred J. Malefatto, Chair.
- 1992-93 This year has again been an active year for the members of the Environmental and Land Use Law Section.
With the vote of The Florida Bar Board of Governors has come the need to revisit the issue of certification for attorneys practicing in environmental and land use law. We are evaluating the interest of our members in proceeding with certification. We anticipate that there may be more interest than when our section considered the issue several years ago. We have formed an ad hoc committee which will be providing a recommendation to our executive council at the June meeting. The issue which has the most attention is the areas of specialization which will be included.
Providing information on the ethical requirements for the environmental and land use law practitioner continues to be paramount to the section. In addition to the mandatory CLE requirements, the Ethics in Environmental and Land Use Law Practice Committee has developed a questionnaire regarding the most common questions raised in members’ practice, and an ethics section for the Section Reporter, including a chapter on ethics in our CLE manual, which organizes and references key cases and opinions into a practical reference guide, and coordinates with our affiliate members so we can assist each other when ethical codes overlap and impact the practices of our collective professions.
The Committee on Equal Access has taken strides to encourage greater pro bono activities and to increase the community awareness on environmental and land use issues. This includes continued emphasis through the Florida Pro Bono Coordinators Association, providing an informational package to the pro bono attorneys to assist low income and other citizens when threatened with environmental and land use problems, increasing the membership in our speakers’ bureau, and sponsoring workshops in decision-making in environmental and land use law.
Our coordinator with the next generation of environmental and land use lawyers continues through cooperative projects. This year we contributed funds to the Florida State University Journal of Land Use and Environmental Law and to the Stetson University College of Law and the University of Florida College of Law for participation at an environmental moot court competition at Pace University, New York. We also sponsor the Dean Maloney Scholarship and Book Award contest. The 1992 winner was Morgan R. Bentley, from the University of Florida. His paper was published in the January 1993 issue of The Florida Bar Journal.
Our membership continues to grow with 2,057 members and 181 affiliate members. The diversity of the membership is reflected in its composition of private practitioners, governmental attorneys and those who practice public interest law, and the affiliate members. While we strive to maintain this diversity, it is important to remember that our common goal is the betterment of the practice of environmental and land use law, whether that be by membership of the executive council or as a committee member. Our Affiliate Member Committee provides an interface for the affiliates with the other committees as well as raising issues of importance to our affiliate members.
Our estimated fund balance as of January 31, 1993, was $88,967. Some of the continued projects which provide a valuable service and educational opportunity for the members include the publication of the Section Reporter. Our Florida Bar Journal Committee has six articles ranging from water, wetlands, and wildlife to lender environmental liability.
The section also publishes, in cooperation with the Florida Bar CLE Committee and the Real Property, Probate and Trust Section, a two-volume publication on over 44 issues relevant to the practice of environmental and land use law. By the end of this year we anticipate that the manual will be updated to reflect the changes in law for the past two years. Our Legislative Review Committee performs a service by providing a summary review of all key bills and other legislative points of interest after the legislative session has concluded. Our CLE Committee has had another successful year. Our annual meeting at Naples in August, saw over 275 members and affiliates attend. The arrival of Hurricane Andrew the day after the seminar concluded certainly impacted the enthusiasm for many environmental and land use law projects as attention was turned to more critical matters. Our section was proud to contribute to Legal Relief, Tips for Hurricane Victims. In addition to the annual update, we have sponsored seminars and workshops in the latest developments of land use law, environmental and land use litigation, solid and hazardous waste, and land use and growth management this Bar year. We invite any interested person to participate. We have taken efforts to increase the quality of both the speakers and written materials as well as the diversity of the presenters. Our Public Interest Representation Committee sponsored a workshop on Florida’s Environmental Problems in a Conch Shell, on May 16, in Key West.
These projects would not be accomplished without the commitment of the committee chairs and their members. I would like to recognize and thank them for their efforts. Even with these dedicated members, there are ample opportunities to participate as an active member of our section and we welcome all new members.
Irene M. Kennedy-Quincey, Chair.
- 1993-94 This year the Environmental and Land Use Law Section continued to expand and improve the services provided to more than 2,000 lawyer and 150 nonlawyer affiliate members. The section has over 15 active committees involved in numerous issues of interest to environmental and land use law practitioners. This report highlights only a portion of the many programs and activities during the past 12 months.
The section’s CLE seminars and workshops committees offered a variety of educational programs, all of which received excellent ratings. Recognizing the degree to which environmental issues have affected real estate transactions, the section held a workshop in October on Environmental Issues in Land Transactions, and in February offered a seminar on Environmental Audits and Due Diligence. In November, the section cosponsored with the Local Government Law Section a seminar, Current Issues in Land Use, the Environment, and Local Government: A User’s Guide.
Familiarity with technically complex scientific issues has become essential for environmental lawyers. With the active participation of geologists, engineers, and other nonlawyer professionals who are affiliate members of the section, the Workshops Committee offered programs on Use of Expert Witnesses in Administrative Hearings and Chlorinated Solvent Spill Liability and Remediation. The section also worked with EPA Region IV, the American Bar Association’s Section of Natural Resources, Energy, and Environmental Law, and the environmental and land use law sections of the other seven states in Region IV in hosting the Second Annual Comprehensive Briefing on Environmental Issues in U.S. EPA Region IV. The section will continue to cosponsor seminars and workshops with other organizations which share its educational goals and commitment to excellence. The annual meeting and update remains the most popular of the section’s educational programs and will be held August 19 and 20, at the Amelia Island Plantation.
During the past year the Executive Council created new opportunities for member involvement. A Special Projects Committee is working on drafting a form consulting services agreement for use in contracting with nonlawyer environmental professionals. The committee is composed of both lawyer and nonlawyer members of the section. The section is also publishing a new directory which will provide information on the variety of subspecialties in which environmental and land use lawyers practice. The section has a long tradition of supporting public interest and pro bono activities in the areas of environmental and land use law.
Among other projects, the section’s Public Interest Committee sponsored a workshop on Ecosystem Management in Florida: New Directions for Planning and Regulation.
Section members interested in fulfilling their pro bono responsibilities in the environmental and land use areas can contact the Access to Justice Committee for ideas and suggestions.
The Ad Hoc Committee on Certification completed its exhaustive study of the certification issue this past year. In addition to polling all section members, the committee looked at certification programs in other states and the historical origins of Florida’s designation and certification programs. Although the designation program is being phased out, and with it the option to designate in environmental law, the Executive Council voted unanimously not to seek a certification program for environmental and/or and land use law. No other state has a certification program in environmental or land use law. The Ad Hoc Committee acknowledged that there may be good reasons for certification programs in some areas; but determined that a certification program would not better assist the public in hiring competent environmental or land use counsel. There was no evidence to indicate that the current methods for identifying qualified environmental and land use counsel were inadequate. Moreover, given the historically low levels of participation in the Bar’ designation and certification programs, the Ad Hoc Committee was concerned that a lawyer’s status as “board certified” in environmental and/or land use law might be misperceived as carrying an imprimatur it is not intended to have.
Though revenues have recently declined, the section’ economic health remains sound, and it continues to show a surplus, as it has for many years. The Executive Council voted this past year to increase annual dues from $20 to $25 to help offset declining revenues. The Executive Council remains committed to reducing economic barriers to member participation and will continue to provide finance assistance to those members who would otherwise be unable to participate.
Douglas M. Halsey, Chair.
- 1994-95 The Environmental and Land Use Law Section has become a diverse, relatively large, and active branch of The Florida Bar. The section has approximately 2,000 attorney and 180 non-attorney affiliate members, who represent the entire spectrum of public and private clients, including developers, regulatory agencies, public interest groups, and environmental organizations. To address the members’ needs, the section has 15 committees working on a wide variety of issues. This report summarizes some of the on-going activities and describes some of the future issues that the section will address.
The section recognizes that one of its most important goals is to “promote and provide education to the Bar, law students, affiliates and the public on environmental and land use related topics.” Accordingly, the section sponsors CLE seminars and workshops, publishes educational materials, works on special projects when appropriate, and works with Florida’s law schools to encourage scholarship in environmental and land use law.
The section’s CLE programs have been popular and informative. The 1994 Annual Meeting and Update Seminar attracted approximately 250 people to Amelia Island for a lively discussion of the most recent cases and developments in environmental and land use law. An even larger group is expected for the 1995 Update Seminar, which will be held on August 17-19 at the South Seas Plantation on Captiva Island. The section also presented programs concerning petroleum and chlorinated solvent spills; the Florida Environmental Reorganization Act; environmental risk assessments; bankruptcy issues affecting environmental law cases; and the representation of public interest groups. All of these programs received very favorable ratings from the attendees. Parenthetically, the written course materials for these programs are available from the Bar; audio or videotapes are available for some program.
To reach a broader audience, the section is cosponsoring CLE programs with other professional organizations that share the section’ goals. For example, the section is cosponsoring programs with The Florida Bar’s Local Government Law Section and the American Bar Association’s Section of Natural Resources, Energy, and Environmental Law.
The section continues to publish outstanding educational materials. The section’s two-volume treatise on Environmental Regulation and Litigation in Florida is the subject of neverending work. This manual is revised every year to keep pace with the rapid developments in environmental law. The section also publishes monthly articles in The Florida Bar Journal and quarterly articles in the section’s Reporter. The authors and editors of these publications have done an exemplary job.
The section has been working on several special projects. It is development standard jury instructions for cases involving common law claims based on pollution, and is helping the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants prepare a handbook for environmental audits. It is also continuing to evaluate the special legal and ethical problems confronting members when they participate in quasi-judicial proceedings.
The section is trying to ensure that its CLE programs and other activities appropriate reflect the diverse interests of its members. The section not only serves those members who represent private corporations, but also assists those who represent public agencies and public interest organizations. The section encourages its members to work on pro bono cases, issues affecting the public’s access to justice, and other public interest matters. The section wants to continue to diversify its membership, Executive Council, and programs.
Each year the section conducts a meeting that focuses on the section’s long range plan. The 1995 planning session will evaluate different long range projects that the section could undertake to provide a lasting contribution to its members and the State of Florida. Among other things, the section will consider whether it should establish a scholarship or professorship in environmental law and land use law.
In conclusion, it has been a very productive year for the section. The Executive Council, committees, and staff have been working diligently to improve and expand the services provided by the section for its members.
David S. Dee, Chair.
- 1995-96 Mary Smallwood, Chair.
- 1996-97 This year the Environmental and Land Use Law Section marks its 25th anniversary of providing services to Florida’s environmental and land use lawyers. From its humble beginnings, the section is now composed of over 2,000 environmental and land use practitioners from state and local governments; academia; public interest environmentalists; pro bono advocates for the poor; large, medium, and small firm private practitioners; and affiliate consultants and scientists in the environmental and land use fields.
The extraordinary diversity of environmental and land use practitioners is reflected in the section’s executive council, where members advocate their various professional agendas through Council meetings and committee work. The committees of the section reflect these diverse agendas and undertake substantive projects and activities to serve section members, the Bar, and the public.
This year, the section has established a website. Although up and running, the website is still expanding. The site contains detailed information on a variety of section activities. CLE workshop and seminar topics and dates are also available. Please visit us at http://www.eluls.org.
High quality CLE programs continue to be hallmark of the section’s activities. This year, the section will sponsor four seminars and five workshops on a variety of topics of interest to environmental and land use practitioners. The section’s two-volume CLE manual on environmental and land use law is currently under revision and, over the next two years, will be completely redesigned and rewritten with many new topics and authors.
This year, the section continues its tradition of providing scholarships to six of Florida’s law school, and will continue its sponsorship of an annual writing contest among those schools for papers on environmental and land use law issues. The winning paper is published in the Bar Journal. Most issues of the Journal feature an article by a section member on topical environmental and land use issues.
Membership has been a major focus of the section this year. The section is working to increase the diversity of section membership, and this year’s efforts focus on bringing more minorities and in-house corporate counsel into the section.
The section continues to produce its Environmental and Land Use Law Reporter. The Reporter provides updates on environmental and land use agencies, case law, and legislation.
The section’s Committee on Access to Justice works with the Legal Environmental Assistance Foundation, and its president, Suzi Ruhl, to provide pro bono legal services to poor communities with environmental problems. LEAF is located in Tallahassee, but provides services to communities throughout Florida.
In addition to the section’ lawyers, more than 200 scientists and consultants, from the entire spectrum of environmental and land use services, participate in section activities as affiliate members. The affiliates share their expertise with section members, and are in the process of developing an online directory of consultant services and expert witnesses to assist the section’s lawyers on technical and scientific matters. Finally, I would like to give personal thanks to the section leadership, including the officers, executive council, and committee chairs. Section members have no idea how hard these volunteers work, with a constant focus on the quality of services provided by the section to increase the quality of practice for section members and all members of The Florida Bar. These section leaders deserve our praise and our gratitude.
Dennis M. Stotts, Chair.