Grim, Biehn & Thatcher was one of the first law firms in southeastern Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley to form a group of professionals devoted specifically to municipal/land use law and has established a reputation of efficiently providing high quality and timely legal work to clients at a reasonable cost. While our firm primarily represents municipalities, zoning hearing boards, and municipal authorities (water and sewer), we have also represented numerous individuals and businesses in connection with their land use and zoning matters, as well as neighboring landowners and community groups opposing proposed development in their community.
We currently represent numerous municipal entities located in the counties of Bucks, Delaware, Monroe, Montgomery, and Northampton.
We welcome the opportunity to work with you in handling your municipal/land use issues.
Our professionals represent both municipalities and individuals and have extensive experience in preparing conservation easements for the preservation of farmland and open space. Also, the firm has vast experience in obtaining open space funds for municipal clients or for Federal, State, and County entities. We provide legal advice in respect to the tax consequences of land preservation. We have represented numerous individuals who have been approached by municipalities concerning the preservation of land and have provided guidance through the process. Lastly, we have worked with municipalities in the process of obtaining voter approval for the assumption of debt for the purposes of land preservation, negotiated with banks regarding the financing of land preservation, and have guided municipal clients in setting up and following procedures during the process of reviewing lands and negotiating with the land owners for preservation.
Our professionals have extensive experience in the review and preparation of zoning and subdivision and land development, other land use ordinances and ordinance amendments for municipal clients, as well as experience in interpreting existing land use ordinances for both municipal and private clients. We have provided a wide breadth of representation and counsel to both municipal and private clients concerning land use based litigation, including representation of municipal boards for zoning hearings, conditional use hearings, curative amendment hearings, and procedural challenges; representation of municipalities and private clients in front of governing bodies, zoning hearing boards, Magisterial District Courts, Courts of Common Pleas, State Appellate Courts, and Federal Courts concerning various types of land use litigation. Our professionals have been involved in numerous land use projects, including preparation of comprehensive plans and open space plans, as well as large rezonings of municipalities and the design of township open space and other large redevelopment projects.
Subdivision & Land Development
Generally, our municipal land use professionals do not represent developers. We do, however, represent individual clients concerning minor subdivision and land development issues, as well as some larger established subdivision and/or redevelopment of existing industrial and commercial property issues. We provide representation to many municipal clients’ planning commissions, and integrally in the review of subdivision and land development applications that are filed with municipal clients.
Our professionals regularly appear in front of zoning hearing boards on behalf of our municipal and individual clients. We also handle for municipal clients numerous zoning enforcement actions, not only in front of the zoning hearing board, but also in front of Magisterial District Justices, Courts of Common Pleas, and the State Appellate Courts. In addition, we represent numerous zoning hearing boards and provide counsel in regard to the various zoning hearings that appear before them.