Local Authority Law
At MHP, working for local authorities is in our blood. We are proud to be able to say that we have been Solicitors to Clare County Council for more than 40 years. Our former Senior Partner, Michael P Houlihan, was appointed solicitor to Clare County Council in 1976 and served as County Solicitor until 2007, when John P Shaw was awarded the contract following a competitive tender procedure and was again appointed County Solicitor for a further term in 2015.
We have a dedicated local authority department and over the years we have developed an in-depth understanding of the unique regulatory environment in which local authorities operate. We advise on statutory interpretation and application – and have been appointed to many framework agreements, to provide legal services to local authorities in a variety of areas. Involved in numerous ground-breaking public law cases.
We have extensive, focussed expertise in the specialist area of compulsory purchase orders, from which many local authorities have benefitted.
We are experienced in the niche areas of planning and environmental law and judicial review.
To ensure meaningful, long term value, we have provided training to local authorities – and work with council officials at every level.
A spread of services
Our work in this area includes:
- Property-based services.
- Capital projects.
- Environment and Waste Management.
- Planning and Development.
- Health and Safety.
- Regulatory enforcement and prosecutions.
- Compulsory Purchase.
- An Bord Pleanála hearings.
- Fire Services.
- Local authority finance.
- Commercial rates.
- Advising on public administrative law processes including judicial review.
- Collection of outstanding commercial rates, handled by our own significant debt collection department.
- Advising on the functions, powers and duties under legislative provisions, applicable to local authorities.
- Advising on the drafting of bye-laws, interpretation and application of legislation.
- Advice on fair procedures and the defence of challenges to public bodies’ decisions.
- Advice on data protection and freedom of information, good governance and conflicts of interest.
- Cognisant of increasingly voluminous European regulations of application to local government law, particularly in the environmental area.