From traditional coal, nuclear, and gas power plants to alternative wind energy farms, Foster Swift’s attorneys help municipalities with the legal and regulatory issues presented by energy providers, including zoning matters and property tax appeals. Our clients are located across the state, from the Upper Peninsula to the “Thumb” to the coast of Lake Michigan.
ZONING & PLANNING
Foster Swift’s attorneys help municipalities develop zoning standards for wind energy farms and other energy providers; adopt temporary moratoria on new energy developments, when necessary; process applications for special land use permits submitted by developers; handle litigation or administrative appeals filed by developers or neighboring landowners; and enforce zoning requirements. We work closely with local officials to navigate these controversial issues, which often draw large crowds and media attention at meetings. Foster Swift is frequently hired as specialty counsel to handle zoning issues related to alternative energy and can collaborate with the municipality’s corporate counsel to ensure seamless and effective legal representation.
PROPERTY TAX APPEALS
A property tax appeal filed by a long-standing power plant or a new alternative energy development can present a significant threat to a municipality’s tax base. Foster Swift’s attorneys have extensive experience in representing local taxing units in these complex, high-stakes tax appeals. From valuation appeals in the Michigan Tax Tribunal to pollution control exemption disputes in the State Tax Commission, having expert legal counsel in your corner is crucial. Our attorneys are also skillful negotiators who can often reach settlements that protect the municipality’s interests while reducing litigation costs. As with our land use work, Foster Swift’s attorneys can handle property tax appeals as specialty counsel.
Publications & Alerts
- Foster Swift Secures Major Victory for Almer and Ellington Townships in Lawsuits Brought by Wind Energy Company, November 2018 Municipal Law News, November 8, 2018
- Solar Land Use Agreements, April 2018 Agricultural Law News, March 14, 2018
- Township’s Decision Regarding Wind Energy Upheld in Federal Court, November 2017 Municipal Law Newsletter, November 28, 2017
- Understanding Solar Energy Lease Agreements, Michigan Farm Bureau and MSUE, March 14, 2018