Our attorneys have served as both general and special counsel for labor, litigation, environmental, finance, tax certiorari and zoning matters. As special counsel, we work closely with a municipality’s general counsel to provide expertise on specific situations.

Our work has earned us a reputation as a leading counsel to municipalities and private parties in a wide variety of situations, including:

General Municipal Law

  • Counsel at board meetings
    • Open Meetings Law
    • Freedom of Information Law
    • Other related issues
  • Review and preparation of contracts, legal notices and other legal documents
  • Advice concerning planning, policies and procedures
  • Preparation of legislation, referenda and resolutions
  • Creation of special districts
  • Annexations and diminutions

Municipal Litigation

  • Civil rights; First Amendment; due process
  • Personal injury
  • Tax certiorari and assessment
  • Article 78 proceedings
  • Finance and commercial litigation
  • Real estate and zoning litigation
  • Environmental claims, defense and recovery

Land Use Planning

  • Zoning enactments and amendments
  • Subdivision and site plan approvals
  • Special use permits, use and area variances
  • Compliance with the New York State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQR)

Public Labor and Employment Law

  • Labor/management relations including:
    • Collective bargaining
    • PERB proceedings
    • Arbitration
  • Counsel on compliance with all federal and state employment laws, including:
    • Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
    • New York Human Rights Law
  • Proceedings before PERB, EEOC and the Division of Human Rights
  • Counsel on nondiscriminatory record-keeping, termination of employment, and civil service requirements



Ryan T. Emery and Samantha L. Millier Named Partners at Mackenzie Hughes LLP

SYRACUSE, N.Y. – Ryan T. Emery and Samantha L. Millier have been elected to the partnership at Mackenzie Hughes LLP. Emery joined Mackenzie Hughes in 2006 and focuses his practice in the areas of litigation, estate planning and estate administration. Admitted to both the New York and Florida Bar, he serves clients residing in both…

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Barry M. Shulman Joins Mackenzie Hughes LLP as a Partner

Barry M. Shulman has joined Mackenzie Hughes LLP as a partner in the firm’s business department. With nearly 50 years of practicing law, Shulman has experience representing corporate and governmental organizations, including local, regional and state authorities. He negotiates complex commercial leases for landlords and tenants, as well as contracts for the acquisition and development…

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Mackenzie Hughes Attorney Appointed to Board of Trustees of the New York State Lawyer Assistance Trust

SYRACUSE, NY – Richard P. James, a partner at Mackenzie Hughes LLP, has been appointed by the Honorable Judith S. Kaye, the Chief Judge of New York State’s Highest Court, to serve a three year term as a member of the Board of Trustees of the New York State Lawyer Assistance Trust. The Lawyer Assistance…

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Summer in the City – SIDA Makes Waves with New Tax Exemption Policies

The City of Syracuse Industrial Development Agency (SIDA) made waves earlier this summer when board members unanimously voted to end the long-standing practice of giving the Syracuse Common Council the ability to vote on all payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT) agreements. As of June 21, 2016, the Council’s PILOT oversight is limited to instances…

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Beauty Is In The Eye Of The Beholder – And In The Eye Of The Planning Board

Sometimes a planning or zoning board objects to a project based on how it looks. Aesthetic issues that come up in site plan, subdivision, or variance review may include the size and shape of a building, the materials used for a project, or even the color of a building or sign. The question often arises…

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