Mediation is the use of an independent neutral person to help the participants in a land use proposal come to agreement on matters in dispute. Land use decisions often involve conflict resolution. Sometimes this is easy. A land use proposal may involve only the applicant and the government. Negotiations may take place about a project proposal that result in changes to the project proposal that are acceptable to the applicant.
At other times conflict resolution may be more difficult. An environmental group may object to the proposal, there may be neighboring property owners who don't like the project proposal, or the government and applicant cannot agree on changes. At these difficult times, a mediator may help resolve conflicts. A mediator can suggest alternative ideas for settlement that cannot be suggested by the parties either because it is politically difficult to do so or because it is a new idea. A mediator can design a process that may lead to settlement of some, if not all, issues. An experienced mediator can prepare a written agreement for the persons involved that captures the agreements made during a mediation session.
We provide mediation services because we have learned that a mediated agreement can result in a long-lasting decision that is acceptable to all involved. Our mediation services can assist in negotiations between an applicant and the government, between a neighborhood group and the applicant, or between multiple parties. Mediation can take place prior to a public hearing to attempt to resolve some issues, leaving the remaining issues for public hearing. Or, mediation can resolve all issues. It often is worth a try because at least mediation gets all parties on the same page.
We may be able to help you with our mediation services. Contact us directly to discuss how we can help.