Profile

Charles has years of broad-based and expansive experience in municipal law, zoning and land use matters. 

His rich knowledge of municipal law and land use regulations provides a legal advantage to his clients. He has the know-how to establish long-term relationships and the resources to tackle problems and develop durable solutions to meet his client's diverse legal needs, regularly working in partnership with municipal counsel and outside consultants to deliver workable and legally sound land use regulations. Charles regularly counsels and represents clients with zoning and environmental review procedures under the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA). In his role as counsel of record and special counsel, he routinely and successfully represents clients in: 

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  • Defending municipal client in multiple toxic tort litigations related to former landfill property
  • Advising municipalities with respect to telecommunication siting issues and defending against Federal Telecommunications Act claims
  • Acted as a project manager on the development of one of Western New York's first hybrid, form-based mixed use zoning codes
  • Performed legal review with respect to numerous draft zoning codes and comprehensive plans
  • Drafted and successfully defended local solid waste law regulating the land application of biosolids 
  • Negotiated inter-municipal agreement consolidating municipal water services

  • Listed in
    • Chambers USA 2021, Upstate New York, Environmental
    • New York Super Lawyers 2021®, Environmental
    • Buffalo Business First, 2015 Legal Elite of WNY
  • New York State Bar Association, Environmental Committee; State and Local Government Committee
  • Erie County Bar Association, Environmental Committee, Past Chair; Municipal Committee 
  • Executive Editor, Buffalo Law Review, 1994-95
  • Recipient, Max Koren Award

  • Issues Affecting Craft Alcohol Beverage Manufacturers, Bar Association of Erie County, March 3, 2017
  • Preservation Fundamentals, New York State Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation and the Town of Clarence Historic Preservation Commission, April 29-30, 2016

 

  • The City of Buffalo Environmental Management Commission, Commissioner
  • NYS Chemistry Council, Board of Directors and Regulatory Committee Chair
  • Western New York Book Arts Collaborative, Former Board Member, Active Member
  • Buffalo Niagara Waterkeeper, Former Board Member, Member of Legal Committee
  • Preservation Buffalo Niagara, Pro Bono Legal Work
  • Partners for a Livable Western New York, Director 2007-present
  • Congress for the New Urbanism National Conference, Program Committee Chair, 2014 
  • Leadership Buffalo Graduate, 2005
  • City Honors Crew, Director