News & Events

Continue to check this page for information on the latest news about the Planning and Law Division and other planning and law activities.

September 2009

International Comparison of Growth Management Legislation — Webinar

Sponsored by the International Division of APA
September 17, 2009 

CM | 1.5 (legal category pending)

This online seminar sponsored by APA-ID will offer an overview of the legal frameworks for New Zealand's RMA and Washington State's GMA. The two pieces of legislation have notable similarities, but their application in both planning practice and judicial processes are quite different. As such, the event may be quite interesting to members in both countries, especially those working in the "growth management states."  This webinar will be offered jointly by APA-ID and the New Zealand Planning Institute, so participants from both countries will attend the online webinar, and an application for this event to qualify for the 1.5 hours of CM credit in the legal category is pending.

The presentation will generally include:

  • An overview of the two statutes
  • Planning processes under the legal frameworks enabled under the statutes
  • Involvement of the judiciary in planning decisions
  • A summary of planning, growth, economic, and legislative challenges

This webinar includes presentations from the New Zealand RMA and Washington GMA perspectives.  Ed McGuire, AICP, an attorney, planner, and former Central Puget Sound Growth Management Hearings Board member serving the Seattle area from 1996 to 2009, will present the US perspective.  Daniel Clay, a partner with Minter, Ellison, Rudd, and Watts lawyers focusing on resource management law in New Zealand.

This webinar will be conducted at 3:00pm Pacific and 6:00pm Eastern on September 17 in the United States and 10:00am September 18 in New Zealand.

Register for the webinar

The cost to participate will be $51.25, but members of the International Division may participate free of charge.  This webinar has a limit of 100 participants.

August 2009

2010 APA National Planning Conference — Request for PLD Sponsored Proposals

Submission Deadline: August 14, 2009

The Session Proposal Committee of the APA Planning and Law Division (PLD) invites division members to propose a session for the 2010 American Planning Association National Planning Conference in New Orleans. Due to policy changes by the APA, the Division has only one by-right session this year, down from the previous two by-rights. We are asking our members to consider proposing a session that will highlight a current land use/planning legal issue, share innovative ideas, and engage your peers at the premier educational and networking event for planners, land use lawyers, and community leaders in the United States. 

You can submit your proposal in one of two manners:

  1. Submit your proposal online — please remember to submit your proposal as a Division Session Proposal (Division Member) and select "Planning and Law Division" as "Your Division".   The following is a link to APA's session proposal page
  2. Send an email with a two or three sentence description of the proposed session along with a list of potential speakers and the learning objective to Co-Chairs David Silverman at or Julie Tappendorf at

 Keep in mind that sessions are 75-minutes in length, are typically conducted in a three or more person panel discussion format, and should represent a variety of perspectives.

This year, there are several conference tracks that are relevant to the day to day work of PLD members, including opportunities to showcase innovative land use regulations, including, of course, regulations designed to promote environmentally friendly land use goals and those designed to combat climate change, as well as economic development and transportation programs and regulations.

The 2010 conference session tracks, format options, and submission details appear on APA's National Planning Conference website. 

June 2009

APA Launches Ethics and Law Online Training, HIA Course Remains Free

With the launch of two new courses from APA, AICP members now have even more affordable, convenient, and interactive options for fulfilling CM requirements.

Ethical Practice for Practicing Planners (2.0| CM, $49.95) explains the tenets of the AICP Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct, and challenges participants to analyze situations, reflect on dilemmas, and apply the code. Throughout the course, planning ethics experts discuss how they might respond to several proposed scenarios.

Hot Topics in Planning Law (3.0|CM, $99.95) provides practicing planners with an understanding of the latest developments in planning law.  From digital billboards to AB 32; from the Next Generation Energy Act of 2007 to green building codes; from Oregon's Measure 49 to the impact of Kelo v. the City of New London, the course illustrates how changes in the law impact how planners work. Available late June.

In addition, APA is pleased to announce that its popular course, Planning for Healthy Communities with Health Impact Assessments, will remain free of charge through June 30, 2010.

At the online course homepage you may view the catalog, register for courses, and access your training. The online course homepage and registration site is hosted by Captus Press, APA's trusted online course program partner.

May 2009


PLD has joined with a consortium of APA Chapters and other Divisions to provide webcasts for CM credit at no cost to their respective members.

Foreclosures have become a major problem in communities across the United States. This session focuses on the legal aspects of dealing with distressed properties. This session is available for CM Law credit and is sponsored by the Planning and Law Division.

Community Strategies for Dealing with Distressed Properties
Thursday, December 10, 2009
1:00 PM - 2:30 PM EST

Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

You may have to cut and paste the e-mail address into your browser order to register for the PLD sponsored session until it is posted.

After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.

System Requirements PC-based attendees Required: Windows® 2000, XP Home, XP Pro, 2003 Server, Vista

Macintosh®-based attendees Required: Mac OS® X 10.4 (Tiger®) or newer

Call for Jurors

Professor Weinstein is looking for volunteers (3-4) to serve as Judges for this year's Competition. He does a first cut on submissions to make sure volunteers only have to review a reasonable number of entries, usually around 15-20.  Judges have about two months (late June to late August) to get through these, so it's really not a big deal.

August 2008

ABA adopts Model Statute on Local Land Use Planning Procedures

On Monday, August 11, 2008, the American Bar Association, through its House of Delegates, adopted a Model Statute on Local Land Use Planning Procedures, advanced jointly by the Sections of State and Local Government Law and the Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice, and co-sponsored by the Real Property Law Section and the Government and Public Sector Lawyers Division. The Model Act, intended to serve as a guide to state, local and tribal governments which adopt land use regulations, outlines appropriate administrative procedures that may be adopted in whole, in part, or used as reference to address particular situations.

Providing a complete development permit review process for land use decisions, the Model Statute identifies the requirements for timely consideration of applications, sets forth administrative review procedures including notices, conduct of hearings and appeals.  The Model Statute also provides for appellate review at the local level by a hearing examiner or land-use review board.  Although it does not include substantive provisions for variances, conditional uses or other possible remedies, it is designed to allow for substantive review by whatever body so authorized by local ordinance.  Finally, the Model Statute provides a judicial review process for land use decisions including jurisdictional principles such as exhaustion and federal claims, as well as standards for review.

This effort was based upon Chapter 10 of the American Planning Association's Growing Smart Legislative Guidebook, which continues to serve as the resource for lawmakers and planners who are modernizing state and local planning and zoning enabling acts and laws.

We thought Planning and Law Division members would be interested in this news and have attached ABA's Model Statute on Local Land Use Planning Procedures to this e-mail. The Model Statute also appeared in the May and June issues of Planning and Environmental Law.

Model Statute on Local Land Use Planning Procedures (pdf)

May 2007

Planning and Law Division Daniel J. Curtin Fellow David Gest (Spring 2007) has volunteered to serve as PLD webmaster. If you have any suggestions or questions about website content, please contact him at

Summaries of 12 major land use cases in the U.S. are now available