Environmental Attorneys Have Success in Ohio Supreme Court
On behalf of a consortium of 14 solid waste management districts, counties and townships, Eastman & Smith Ltd. members Albin Bauer and René L. Rimelspach, and former Eastman & Smith member Dirk P. Plessner, successfully argued in briefs filed in 2011 for the reversal of a lower court decision that found landfills to be exempt from township zoning. The Ohio Supreme Court announced its decision yesterday. The Supreme Court agreed with the consortium's friend-of-the-court brief which argued that the absence of government control over substantial aspects of a private landfill's business activities precluded the landfill from qualifying as a "public utility," that is exempt from township zoning. While focused on a landfill in Hamilton County, Ohio, this decision will have important implications for township zoning regulation, landfills and other types of waste facilities across the state.