Public and Municipal Law

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Our Public and Municipal Law Group represents towns, cities, districts, and agencies throughout Massachusetts. We take pride in our ability to provide cost-effective, objective, and pragmatic representation to our public sector clients.

Town Counsel and Special Municipal Counsel Services

As Town Counsel and Special Municipal Counsel, our attorneys advise municipalities in all areas of municipal law, including the Open Meeting Law, Public Records Law, Conflict of Interest Law, municipal governance, home rule, town meeting procedure, elections, land use, real estate, eminent domain, municipal finance, taxation, special legislation, contracts, school building projects, procurement, and public construction.

We work closely with municipal officials to avoid litigation whenever possible or desirable. However, if litigation becomes unavoidable, we are ready to provide vigorous advocacy in any forum. Mirick O’Connell has a team of litigation attorneys with extensive experience representing municipalities, municipal officials, and boards.

Labor Counsel Services

As Labor Counsel to cities and towns, we serve as counselors, negotiators and litigators. In doing so, we routinely render advice on the full array of employment laws, including the Family and Medical Leave Act, wage and hour laws, and anti-discrimination laws. We also advise our municipal clients on laws unique to the public sector, such as the civil service and the public sector collective bargaining statutes.

In addition to our role as advisors, we represent our clients in collective bargaining. Our role in collective bargaining varies depending upon the client. Some clients prefer that we handle negotiations from beginning to end, consulting with them throughout the process. Others have us take the role of lead spokesperson among a team of town officials comprising the town’s bargaining team. Still others ask that we act in a consultative role by preparing proposals and recommending strategies.

In today’s world of labor relations, litigation is an unfortunate reality. We have an extensive track record of success in representing clients before the Civil Service Commission, Department of Labor Relations, Joint-Labor Management Committee, and Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination, as well as state and federal courts. In addition, we regularly represent clients at grievance arbitrations.

Legal Updates and Training

Our attorneys vigilantly monitor legal developments and changes to the law, and provide our public sector clients with electronic updates on legal developments that may affect them. We provide in-house training programs to public officials on the Open Meeting Law, Conflict of Interest Law, and Public Records Law, and our labor attorneys provide workplace trainings on all aspects of labor and employment law, including harassment prevention training. Mirick O’Connell also provides an Annual Labor and Employment Law Update Seminar.
 

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