As a member of the Municipal and School Group, Chris assists the firm’s municipal and school district clients by assisting them in properly running a meeting and complying with the Sunshine Act, taking land via eminent domain for public projects, responding to requests for records made pursuant to the Right-to-Know Law, prosecuting real estate tax assessment appeals and real estate tax exemption applications, drafting ordinances, resolutions and policies.
As part of his land use and zoning practice, Chris serves as the Solicitor for the Cecil Township Zoning Hearing Board. Chris uses his knowledge of the Municipal Planning Code to advise private and governmental clients as to the legal requirements of subdivisions and land developments, the placement of cell phone towers, variances, conditional uses and special exceptions.
The knowledge gained in these governmental roles allows Chris to also effectively guide private clients through the process of interacting with governmental agencies in an efficient and cost-effective manner in matters including, but not limited to: receiving real estate tax exemption approval, reducing real estate tax assessments to a fair and accurate value, receiving zoning and land use approvals, receiving just compensation in eminent domain proceedings and receiving public records.
- Prosecuted violation of a health and safety ordinance by getting a preliminary injunction for Client;
- Assisted Client in taking land by eminent domain for a road project and prevented costly delays by getting objection to the taking dismissed without a hearing;
- Assisted Client in opposing a variance filed by a neighboring property owner;
- Drafted waivers and releases for clients;
- Guided a governmental Client on its obligations under state and federal law regarding approving and/or denying an application for a cell phone tower;
- Reviewed, revised and negotiated supply and services contracts for Clients;
- Assisted Client in achieving tax exempt status as an institution of purely public charity and, for school district clients, negotiated settlements with entities claiming such status;
- Guided Clients on clearance requirements under the Child Protective Services Law;
- Assisted Client in drafting amended zoning ordinance.
Presentations & Publications
- The Ability of a School To Punish Lewd Or Profane Speech Disappears Once A Student Exits School Grounds June 4, 2018
- Commonwealth Court Holds That Addresses Contained In Property Tax Assessment Records Are Public Records March 26, 2018
- Assessment Appeal Process May Provide Opportunities for Allegheny County Property Owners March 14, 2018
- School Code Update: School Boards Must Prohibit Lunch Shaming February 12, 2018
- Federal Court Holds That Banning a Commenter From a Public Official’s Public Facebook Page Violates the Commenter’s Right to Free Speech October 23, 2017
- District Court Permits Transgender Person Diagnosed With Gender Dysphoria to Sue Under Americans With Disabilities Act September 11, 2017
- Federal Court rules that Elected Official Violated First Amendment when Banning Commenter on the Official’s Public Facebook Page August 4, 2017
- Selective property tax appeals based on property type or residency status of the owner violates the Pennsylvania Constitution’s Uniformity Clause July 12, 2017