Thomas Shepardson -

Attorney Biography

Thomas A. Shepardson

Partner
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Attorney Biography

Thomas A. Shepardson

Partner

Mr. Shepardson is a member of Whiteman Osterman & Hanna’s Land Use and Development, Municipal, and Environmental Practice Groups.  His areas of expertise include Environmental Law, Zoning, Planning and Land Use Permitting, and Compliance and Litigation.  Prior to joining the Firm, Mr. Shepardson was an Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of Albany from 1989 to 1997 and an associate at Shanley, Sweeney, Reilly & Allen from 1997 to 2005.

Mr. Shepardson concentrates his practice on issues involving environmental law, land use law, municipal law, SEQRA and real estate development. His practice involves numerous large and small scale projects, including representing municipalities, developers, and land owners.  His work, from project inception through successful litigation, includes some of the largest shopping centers in various regions of the state.  

A primary part of Mr. Shepardson’s work focuses on the State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) review and compliance with federal and state environmental statutes and regulations. His work includes detailed environmental assessments (DEIS, FEIS and Findings Statements) for large-scale projects.  He coordinates responses among federal and state agencies as part of required federal and state environmental assessments.

Mr. Shepardson has drafted legislation for municipalities on issues ranging from SEQRA approval resolutions to complex regulations under the Telecommunications Act of 1996. He is well versed in the requirements of SEQRA and has guided many communities through the environmental review process.

Representative Accomplishments
  • Represents major shopping center developers through all phases of the environmental (SEQRA) and local land use permitting process for numerous developments, their expansion projects and other development projects throughout the State.  Many of these projects have involved controversy, and responsibilities involve creation of a solid litigation record before the administrative agency that withstands lawsuits by organized neighborhood groups and competitors.  Mr. Shepardson’s practice also involves litigation defense of the administrative permits, land use approvals received, and the environmental review performed.
  • Represents public and private clients before federal, state and local agencies to obtain permits and resolve enforcement actions.
  • Special Counsel to the City of Albany in connection with several matters including: the Park South Urban Renewal Project, seeking to substantially redevelop a blighted mixed-use nine block area of the city; defense of EPA administrative enforcement proceedings involving the city’s landfill; assisting the City and Water Board with the Beaver Creek Clean River Project, and agreements to monetize carbon credits with The Nature Conservancy and associated conservation easement.
  • As Assistant Corporation Counsel for the City of Albany, represented the Planning Board, Common Council and Board of Zoning Appeals and prosecuted building code violations.
Affiliations

New York State Bar, Northern District of New York and the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.  He is a member of the New York State and Albany County Bar Associations. He is a frequent lecturer on SEQRA and planning issues.

Background/Education

Mr. Shepardson is a local product, having graduated from Christian Brothers Academy, Siena College, where he lettered in varsity baseball for four years, and Western New England School of Law.


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